Suspension Secrets Toyota GR Yaris Seat Lowering Plate Kit – A New Perspective
A favourite of the automotive media and with an extended order waiting list to boot, Toyota’s GR Yaris homologation-special is one of the most talked about ‘real world’ performance cars in recent years. It has received rave reviews, with praise being given to the car’s strong performance, and motorsport-derived design.
But the GR Yaris is not perfect.
There is one issue that owners and publications alike have taken issue with – the overly high seating position.
Currently, rectifying this issue requires the installation of aftermarket seat frames and sliders, which are not compatible with the GR Yaris’ original seats, which means buying aftermarket seats, and this can cost around £2500.
It was even declared impossible to achieve a lower seating position whilst retaining the standard seats.
That is, until now.
We here at Suspension Secrets are thrilled to present a world first – our Toyota GR Yaris Seat Lowering Kit. Designed to be entirely compatible with the standard seats, our kit gives a reduction in seat height of 35mm, at a fraction of the cost of any other available solutions.
How did we do it?
The development process for our Seat Lowering Kit began when our good friends at Supercar Driver loaned us their GR Yaris to use for the development of our kit.
We started by removing both front seats from the car, and then we stripped apart the whole seat assemblies for both seats. From here, we could see what was bolted, what was welded, and how the seat could sit lower.
We discovered that most of the seat assembly was welded, which limited our lowering options. The only solution that allowed us to achieve the desired reduction in seat height whilst retaining the factory-fit seats, was to remove the slider assemblies from the underside of the seats.
From there, we could install a seat lowering plate that could be bolted directly to the floorpan of the car.
The next step was to 3D scan the entire floorpan and both seat assemblies. Using the three-dimensional data acquired from the scan, we used CAD to design a compatible lowering plate.
Once the design was finished and we were satisfied, the CAD file was sent to be laser-cut and CNC-folded, and a working prototype was created.
Our prototype was then installed on Supercar Drivers’ GR Yaris, and thoroughly tested, with particular focus being given to the strength of the mount, and how the lowering plate’s adjustable chassis mounting points could be positioned to suit drivers of differing heights.
Finally, once the testing process had been completed, we were able to review the product, and analyse its benefits.
The main achievement of the Suspension Secrets Toyota GR Yaris Seat Lowering Kit is a reduction in the height of both the driver’s and passenger’s front seats by between 35mm, whilst retaining and being fully compatible with the original seats and their electrical functions, and also having the adjustability to accommodate GR Yaris drivers of all different sizes.
We have created a solution that is extremely cost effective, costing approximately 10% of some other solutions, with the only downside being a lack of slider adjustment for quick adjustment.
Why would I want lower seats?
As much as we are proud of our achievement, you may be asking yourself – what is so important about having a lower seating position?
A lower seating position is desirable in a performance car in terms of handling dynamics, but also in subjective terms for the confidence and comfort of the driver.
By mounting the seats lower in the car, both the weight of the seat, and the weight of the driver and passenger, if present, will be situated closer to the floor of the car, lowering the Centre of Gravity (CoG).
Having a lower CoG will make a car more responsive during cornering, due to having less body roll, and it will also give the car more stability during direction changes, as the weight is more evenly distributed lower in the car. This means the suspension is less occupied with making sure the weight load is being managed and can, in turn, generate more lateral grip, leading to higher cornering speeds.
Whilst the dynamic benefits of a lower seating position are welcome, another benefit of having lowered seats is the difference in feeling for the driver. Not only will the driver have more headroom in the car, being sat lower will also make them feel more connected to the chassis and suspension of the vehicle. This is particularly useful as it creates a stronger feeling of ‘connection’ for the driver, allowing them to more finely understand how a car is driving beneath them and how their inputs, be it throttle, brake or steering, impact the dynamics of their car.
The original seating position in the GR Yaris, even in its lowest position, is notoriously high and visibility is often impacted by the rear-view mirror. Our kit negates this, giving the driver an unobstructed view out of the windscreen, boosting the confidence of the driver to place the car more precisely on the road, leading to greater driver enjoyment.
Following the link below to purchase either a driver’s and passenger’s kit, or single plates for either the driver’s or passenger’s seat only.