The present invention relates to a front seat arrangement for light
trucks, vans or the like, of the type comprising a row of three front seats each
provided with a respective safety belt.
In vehicles of this kind, the driving seat and the front seat located
on the side opposite to that of the driving seat are each provided with a safety
belt having both an abdominal portion and a thorax portion, a belt passage support
being fixed on the side pillar of the vehicle structure. The central front seat
is provided instead with a safety belt having only an abdominal portion.
In order to improve safety of the passenger seated on the front central
seat, the present invention provides an arrangement of the above indicated type,
characterized in that said central seat is provided with a safety belt including
both a lower abdominal portion and a thorax diagonal portion which is passed at
the top through a support fixed to a pillar which is rigidly connected to the vehicle
In a preferred embodiment, the winder device of the safety belt of
the central seat is also mounted on said pillar, adjacent to the lower end thereof.
The above mentioned pillar is provided at a position adjacent to
the backrests of the driving seat and the central front seat, so that it does not
reduce the available space within the passenger compartment of the motor-vehicle.
This pillar may extend from the floor up to the roof of the driving cab, or can
be stopped at a height substantially corresponding to that of the front seats.
The invention will be now described with reference to the annexed
drawings, given purely by way of non limiting example, wherein:
- figure 1 is a perspective view of a first embodiment of the seat arrangement
according to the invention,
- figure 2 is a side view of the arrangement of figure 1, and
- figure 3 shows a variant of figure 1.
With reference to the drawings, numerals 1, 2 respectively designate
the central front seat and the front seat opposite to the driving seat of a light
truck or van. In the drawings, the driving seat is not illustrated, in order to
show the structure forming the subject of the invention more clearly.
In the case of the illustrated example, the two seats 1, 2 have cushions
1a, 2a and backrests 1b, 2b supported by a single support frame 12 fixed to the
cabin floor of the vehicle. The side seat 2 is provided with a conventional safety
belt (not illustrated) including a lower abdominal portion and a diagonal thorax
portion which are connected to the side of the structure of the vehicle in the
conventional way. The arrangement of the safety belt of seat 2 is not illustrated
since it is of conventional type and does not fall, taken alone, within the scope
of the present invention. The deletion of such details from the drawings also
makes the structure forming the subject of the invention easier to understand.
Contrary to the conventional art, the central seat 1 is provided
with a safety belt 3 including not only a horizontal portion 4, but also a diagonal
portion 5. The safety belt 3 has a connecting tab which is for cooperation with
a quick-fit buckle 6 provided in the space 13 intermediate between cushions 1a,
2a (similarly to a buckle 7 associated with the safety belt of seat 2). Belt 3
has one end rigidly connected to an anchoring bracket 8 and the other end connected
to a winder device 9 and is passed through a support 10 adjacent to the shoulder
of the user.
According to the invention, the support 10, and preferably also the
winder device 9 and the buckle 8, are supported by a pillar structure 11 which
is rigidly anchored to the cabin floor.
Figure 1 shows an embodiment in which pillar 11 stops at a height
substantially corresponding to that of the backrest of seat 1 and is arranged substantially
in the space between the backrest of seat 1 and the adjacent backrest (not shown)
of the driving seat. Figure 3 shows a second embodiment in which pillar 11 extends
from the cabin floor up to the roof and is rigidly connected to the latter, whereas
buckle 8 is fixed to frame 12.
The above described arrangement substantially improves the safety
of the passenger seated on the front central seat of the vehicle, with a relatively
simple and cheap structure.
Naturally, while the principle of the invention remains the same,
the details of construction and the embodiments may widely vary with respect to
what has been described and illustrated purely by way of example, without departing
from the scope of the present invention.