LITTLE PEOPLE IN MOTION
When a company has been around for well over a century and has come to be recognised as a synonym for performance, ingenious design and reliability, it wants to make sure every new product being launched on the international market is delivering on that very brand promise. First impressions count, and second ones even more, this is why Recaro wanted to give its latest child car seat a strong visual brand identity, on top of a design ensuring maximum performance, safety and top quality.
Studio Volpi not only had the right set of competencies from an engineering point of view, but it also was able to leverage its expertise in branding and design to provide the most effective solution in terms of brand visual language.
Children have a habit to grow
One of the main challenges when designing a child car seat is that it must adapt to the varying sizes of the children who will be using it. Unsurprisingly, the same child using the seat will be growing fast, and unlike clothes, one cannot simply buy a new one every time the little passenger grows by a few inches. Hence the need for seats that can adapt and grow with their users, while complying with a series of stringent safety regulations and providing maximum comfort all along.
The latest European standards in this field are set out in the R129/i-Size car seat safety rules, and Studio Volpi scrupulously made sure every detail of the project met or exceeded these regulations while creating a distinctive, unique design that strongly conveyed the Recaro brand values. The seat is approved for children from 15 months to 12 years old.
It can be configured in a progressive way to gradually adapt to a child’s growth, with the headrest able to extend in height to provide adequate support and head and neck protection as the child gets taller. Also, it provides for easy transition from the built-in, 5-point harness to the car’s regular three-point safety belt.
The seat itself needs to be safely secured to the car. The Universal Isofix method, fully compliant with the latest regulations, was chosen for strength and security. It consists of two arms that hook directly onto the chassis of the vehicle, providing the strongest anchorage for the seat. The system is completed by a top tether that clicks into a tether point behind the back seat. Almost all new cars are designed to be compatible with such systems.
Providing a comfortable ride was, beyond the safety aspects, one of the primary objectives of the Studio. Rounded, natural and soft shapes were considered, to offer a reassuring cocoon for junior in all circumstances. Part of the padding providing a snug fit for the smaller children, can be removed for the successive configurations, accommodating the children as they grow, in total comfort.
The transition from five-point harness to regular three-point seat belts was facilitated by the belt guides integrated in the shell. Also, the seat can be tilted into three different reclining positions.
On top of the latest and most up-to-date Isofix+top-tether fixation system, Studio Volpi included some advanced safety features such a Recaro’s very own Advanced Side Protection (ASP) system to absorb any lateral impact and offer maximum protection for the occupant of the seat. This feature is very easy to use and was made available on both sides of the seat, depending on which side of the car it is placed.
Studio Volpi implemented some additional features to make the seat even more enjoyable for the little passengers, such as the RECARO typical loudspeakers on either side of the headrest, that connect to every portable device, which in turn can be placed in one of the dedicated side pockets. Also, baby will never get too hot thanks to the built-in air vents on the sides of the shell, ensuring continuous ventilation.
Recaro signature look
Studio Volpi’s team focussed on giving the product a distinctive, unmistakably Recaro look. If “good design is good business”, “ingenious design is Recaro’s business”: this is one of the company’s distinctive traits when it comes to the visual impact of its products. Every effort was put in to make every detail of Recaro’s new child car seat look and feel clever, well-thought out and elegantly serving its technical purposes. Also, the efficient functionality and premium quality of the product immediately stands out at first glance. Of course, aesthetics did play an important role in the design phase, as well as ergonomics, which had to convey a sense of visual and sensory comfort.
A challenging but rewarding project
The Studio always finds projects involving a variety of skills and competencies in the design, branding and engineering fields as the most rewarding, since they make for the best use of its internal resources, leveraging on the multiplicity of its expertise. Also, working in tight collaboration with the client’s team, understanding and interpreting their unique set of values in order to develop a product that represents their essence and their personality, is a rare privilege which the Studio greatly appreciates. Every time, with every project, and the Recaro Child Car Seat is among the most gratifying and fulfilling.