Bucket seats are standard issue in many sports cars.
Apart from giving the interior the right look, they help keep the driver snug.
Bucket seats can enhance your car’s sporty credentials and improve lap times during track days.
But before you go purchasing a pair of bucket seats and fitting them to your car, consider their pros and cons.
Bucket seats hold you tight.
If you’re trying to set faster lap times, bucket seats are a must.
They keep your bum from sliding around, which reduces or even eliminates the need to re-centre your body.
Seats whose backrests cannot be adjusted for recline are usually in the “correct” position, too.
By keeping your body in place and ensuring all controls are within reach and can be manipulated without fuss, you will go faster.
Bucket seats reduce your car’s weight.
See those seats in the photo? They weigh 14kg each.
A regular car seat usually weighs more and will be even heavier if it has electric motors, fans and vents.
Bucket seats are also stiffer than normal seats, to help secure the driver and front passenger (in rally cars) in place.
Even if you don’t do track days, you’ll still improve your street cred.
Especially if you’ve also installed a matching pair of racing harnesses.
If you don’t do track days, you might be called a poser.
It’s unlikely that your buddies would call you out like this, but not all petrolheads are as nice as they are.
That said, you might be one of those enthusiasts who genuinely just like the racier look that bucket seats give your car.
It doesn’t matter if it’s just a humble runabout.
There’s nothing wrong with this. And if you feel that a more snug fit helps you drive better, it’s all good.
Just remember that a good driver is a safe, smooth and always has good situational awareness.
Getting in and out may be difficult.
Those tall bolsters are great for keeping your legs and shoulders from sliding about.
But they can make getting in and out of the driver’s seat tricky.
If you’re not very limber or have issues such as back problems, bucket seats are not for you.
They may be uncomfortable on long drives.
Bucket seats, especially those designed for racing, are not the most comfortable seats for road trips.
Most of them have very minimal padding.
After all, many racing circuits have pretty smooth track surfaces.
This lets teams go for stiffer dampers and suspension setups as well.
Road trips in these kinds of seats may not be a good idea!