Replaced my stock seats with Recaro Sport seats!

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  1. #1
    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Replaced my stock seats with Recaro Sport seats!

    So my Supra has 71k miles on it, and after 14 years of getting in and out of it, my driver's seat leather was cracking. I've always thought that a car that can pull .99 latteral Gs on a skidpad deserved better latteral support in the seats. So I started looking into replacing the seats with better ones instead of getting the seats reupholstered. The new ones had to look like they might have come with the car from the factory (I'm something of a purist). After a lot of research, I decided on the Recaro "Sport" seats. I got the "Topline" model (electric+vent fan+heat) for the driver's seat, and the base model for the passenger's seat (rarely used anyway)...the same basic feature set as the stock seats (power driver's, manual passenger's).

    My car is Baltic Blue (the best looking color, of course) with beige leather seats, beige carpet, and black floor mats (and instrument panel/console, of course). For the new seats, I decided on Recaro's beige leather with black leather bolsters (side and thigh). This was not a "standard" color combination, so they charged me a little up charge. I also had them stitch the "Recaro" logo in black thread so it would be very very subtle.

    The Recaro driver's seat (the Topline one) has on-seat buttons for power height and recline adjustments, as well as the seat heater and seat vent. But since Toyota made a set of seat heater buttons for this car (sold only on Canadian models, so I hear), I wanted that button for my instrument panel. Ordered it from Curt, who got it sent in from Japan (thanks Curt!). I then rewired the Recaro seat so that, in addition to the on-seat buttons, the Toyota button set would also operate the heat and vent (left button for heat, right button for air/vent). A nice side effect is that the Toyota button's LEDs light up if I happen to bump the on-seat buttons. The last few pictures (below) show this button set. Now I just need to relabel the right button from "R" to "Cool".

    I also ran my radar detector's remote speaker up into the seat (wire completely hidden), with a small speaker set into one of the 4-point harness holes, which will be right next to one of my ears. Now I'll be able to hear the radar warnings with the roof off and the radio cranked!

    Overall, I'm very pleased with the result. The leather match is perfect, and the two-tone look matches the rest of the interior.

    First, the "before" picture:


    Old passenger seat next to new passenger seat:


    The same seats showing the slick side profile of the Recaros:


    Right side of Recaro passenger seat showing lumbar pump:


    Bottom of Recaro passenger seat:


    Recaro passenger seat installed next to stock driver's seat (had to take a break at this point):


    The "before" picture of the driver's seat:


    The "after" picture of the Recaro driver's seat:


    Both Recaros from the side, installed:


    Nice detail of the new interior, from above:


    The instrument panel with the Canada-only OEM seat heater button installed:


    Closer-up view of all my instrument panel buttons now:


    Close-up of the Canada-only OEM seat heater button:
    WTB (09/23/2014): OEM glass break sensor/mic.

    1995 Supra NA, Baltic Blue, targa, TRD LSD, Recaro Sport seats, Cusco carbon fiber front/rear strut tower bars, 97+ front turns
    Passport hardwired, w/ amped remote speakers in seat harness slots
    Hidden/hardwired garage door opener w/ custom Supra dash button


    1995 Supra TT, BPU, Baltic Blue, targa, TRD front/Cusco rear strut tower bars, 98 headlights w/ 6k HIDs, 97+ front turns, Tial BOV, HKS Super Drager exhaust, SSR Professor SP1 wheels, Racelogic TC, VPC/GCC
    Passport hardwired
    Hidden/hardwired garage door opener w/ custom Supra dash button
    Subtle white LED dash backlights

  2. #2
    EchoDeDupra Supradedupra's Avatar
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    That looks awesome! and very clean!
    It's not what you have; it's what you know.
    Quote Originally Posted by exvelocity View Post
    Actually this car did catch fire at my shop,at that time it had more leaks than a torn off roof in a hurricane

  3. #3
    GO 'Cats! bonz's Avatar
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    Nicely done. I like it! I went and looked at some sites and had to re-read your post to find the non-standard color charge as I couldn't find that color combo....very nice!

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    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bonz View Post
    Nicely done. I like it! I went and looked at some sites and had to re-read your post to find the non-standard color charge as I couldn't find that color combo....very nice!
    Thanks! Recaro has a standard up-charge for "customization", but the Recaro dealer I bought from talked them down, I think to about 25% of the normal up-charge, since both leathers were stock colors...I was just combining them differently than Recaro normally does.
    Last edited by bitshftr; 02-22-2009 at 12:16 PM.

  5. #5
    Time for change
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    Weight difference from the new drivers seat to the stocker?

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    ESE CULO RemixPinoY's Avatar
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    Nice seats! Those OEM buttons can you still order those? I wouldn't mind adding heated seats since they sell the parts separately for cheap.

  7. #7
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    I have to admit, those look damn hot. DAMN HOT. Good job.

  8. #8
    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beau View Post
    Weight difference from the new drivers seat to the stocker?
    Stock driver's seat with mounting brackets is 49 lbs. (weighed on my bathroom scale).

    Recaro Sport Topline seat (according to Recaro...I didn't weigh it) is 45.2 lbs., plus Recaro slider (3-4 lbs. maybe?), plus Wedge Engineering mounting bracket (don't know, maybe another 4 lbs.). My guess is a total of 53 lbs.

    I'll weigh the Recaro/Recaro/Wedge combination on the bathroom scale when I take them back out this weekend to replace a plastic trim piece that was cracked in shipping. Then I'll post another reply with the exact weight, and I'll edit this post and put the result here:
    .
    Update: Recaro Sport Topline seat plus Recaro slider plus Wedge Engineering mounting bracket is 58 lbs.
    .
    Last edited by bitshftr; 03-07-2009 at 03:50 PM.

  9. #9
    SupraForums Member
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    Those are VERY nice seats, plus the vastly improved functionality. Congrats and good luck with them.

    If you don't mind posting or PM'ing me about what these cost, I'd appreciate it since I've been thinking along these lines and those are exactly the type I'd want...but all black to match my car. Does a vendor here sell those, or did you get them elsewhere?
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    SupraForums Member loneranger's Avatar
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    Nice. Those would look good in full black in my car.. What was the damage on the set? Or a rough round a bout price?

  11. #11
    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RemixPinoY View Post
    Nice seats! Those OEM buttons can you still order those?
    Yep...give Curt a call.

    "Switch, seat heater", 84751-14030, list $81.22, cost $62.01

    Got them in less than a month (came from Japan).

    Edit: Here are the part #s for the connector that plugs into the OEM swtich:

    Quantity 1: 90980-10933 "HOUSING, CONNECTOR 6 PIN" list $6.60, cost $5.04 (harness side)
    Quantity 6: 82998-12440 "TERMINAL, FEMALE" list $6.55, cost $5.00 EA (terminals with wires attached)
    Last edited by bitshftr; 11-15-2010 at 06:15 PM.

  12. #12
    ~ RSP LOVER ~ WrenchWhore's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RemixPinoY View Post
    Nice seats! Those OEM buttons can you still order those? I wouldn't mind adding heated seats since they sell the parts separately for cheap.

    The temps over in Santa Clara must get a lot colder than over here in Los Gatos because the last time I checked even on our coldest days we didn't need friggin seat heaters.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick 95 6sp View Post
    If you don't mind posting or PM'ing me about what these cost, I'd appreciate it .... Does a vendor here sell those, or did you get them elsewhere?

    Ditto

  14. #14
    SupraForums Member loneranger's Avatar
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    How do they feel? Is there any height difference?

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    Its Almost Easy A. Brodie's Avatar
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    they look great! but are they comfortable? for example, good for short distances? good for long distances? better then stock seats?

  16. #16
    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick 95 6sp View Post
    If you don't mind posting or PM'ing me about what these cost, I'd appreciate it since I've been thinking along these lines and those are exactly the type I'd want...but all black to match my car.
    Quote Originally Posted by loneranger View Post
    Nice. Those would look good in full black in my car.. What was the damage on the set? Or a rough round a bout price?
    Quote Originally Posted by 94Canuck View Post
    Ditto
    I have no problem posting the info here. They were a combined birthday/Christmas gift from my wife (although I did all the research and legwork).

    Recaro's pricing is pretty straightforward. Dealer prices seem to vary by a few hundred dollars per seat. Here's what we paid for mine:

    Recaro Sport (passenger seat) in beige leather / black leather: $1290.
    Recaro Sport Topline (driver's seat) in beige leather / black leather: $1550.
    Recaro sliders: $80 each.
    Wedge Engineering brackets: $100.00 each.

    Evidently, Recaro makes brackets for our Supras, but they are ridiculously expensive because they have to bring them in from Japan. I think that Recaros were an option on JDM Supras during the last couple of years they were sold there.

    Shipping will run somewhere between $90 and $180 depending on your location and bargaining skills. And my Dad paid about $62 for the OEM seat heater switch (if anyone goes this route, PM me and I'll give you the details of wiring modifications in the seat and connection to the switch).

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick 95 6sp View Post
    Does a vendor here sell those, or did you get them elsewhere?
    I don't know of a supporting vendor here that sells them, but I haven't done an exhaustive search. I got mine from Danny at GMP Performance in Charlotte, NC. Their pricing seemed to match the lowest that I saw on the web, and they were very good to work with. I'm not sure what the rules are for posting vendor info here. If a mod or admin can tell me, I'll be happy to post contact info. Otherwise, feel free to PM me and I'll get you the info.
    Last edited by bitshftr; 02-17-2009 at 10:15 PM.

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    ESE CULO RemixPinoY's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bitshftr View Post
    Yep...give Curt a call.

    "Switch, seat heater", 84751-14030, list $81.22, cost $62.01

    Got them in less than a month (came from Japan).
    Whoa very expensive for the buttons lol. I wonder if they'll work with aftermarket heater's, I just want an OEM look for the switches.

    Haha wrenchwhore while I don't necessarily need it, it would be nice on cold windy days.

  18. #18
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    Absolutely gorgeous

    And thanks for posting the pics of the buttons - hadn't seen those before.
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  19. #19
    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loneranger View Post
    How do they feel? Is there any height difference?
    Quote Originally Posted by A. Brodie View Post
    they look great! but are they comfortable? for example, good for short distances? good for long distances? better then stock seats?
    They feel great! Very supportive, and they hug my back just like I want. I'm 5'7" 150lbs. I've already gotten some easy 4-wheel drift on a daily left-hand turn just because I'm not sliding sideways in my seat. Yes, I think they are better than stock seats...better latteral support, and very comfortable. I haven't had a chance to drive any long distances in them yet, but there are no pressure points, so I have no doubt that they'll be fine. If you can find a Mitsubishi Evo (a year or two old I think), they have Recaro Sport seats standard (although they use a custom stitching pattern). That's what I did to sit in them before purchasing, since the nearest Recaro dealer is 3 hours away from me and they don't stock a lot of these seats anyway.

    As far as the height difference, there are 2 answers. See my next post for height and seatbelt position info.
    Last edited by bitshftr; 02-17-2009 at 10:48 PM.

  20. #20
    6-speed Challenge 2yotasuper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RemixPinoY View Post
    Nice seats! Those OEM buttons can you still order those? I wouldn't mind adding heated seats since they sell the parts separately for cheap.
    I have a Canadian car as well with the heated seats--which came standard in Canada since it gets so damn cold... lol

    Nice seats... they kind of offset the stock tan a little bit... I just bought some new seats and I am going to put them in soon as well... maybe I will post some pics...
    Last edited by 2yotasuper; 02-17-2009 at 11:29 PM.
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    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loneranger View Post
    Is there any height difference?
    The passenger seat, which does not have height adjustment, with the Recaro sliders and Wedge brackets, sits 1.25 inches lower than stock. Now, I had to put 0.5 inch spacers (not supplied) between the Wedge brackets and the Recaro sliders because the bottom of the seat itself has a slightly convex butt shape (as viewed from the bottom of the seat), with the convex part dipping 0.5 inches below the bracket mounting plane. Without the spacers, I wouldn't be able to slide the seat fore and aft, because the convex part would stop on the frame of the bracket. So with the spacers in place, they are 0.75 inches lower than stock. I plan on taking some final measurements this weekend and then contacting Wedge to replace this bracket with one that adds 1 inch of clearance between the bracket frame (the crossmember bars) and the slider mounting points. Then I'll be back to within a quarter inch of stock seating height.

    The driver's seat (Recaro Sport Topline) has electrical height adjustment, and I just ran it up a little (about an inch maybe) so that I'm at the same exact height as stock. I'm satisfied with this, but....

    The other issue is the seatbelt anchor points. On the stock seats, the anchor point is the hinge of the seat. The Recaro seats have no such anchor point, so the bracket makers weld in an anchor point. In the position I have my seats, the anchor point makes the seatbelt latch sit higher and more forward of where it was with the stock seats in the same position. During my research phase, I saw at least one other posting that eluded to this also. This makes the seatbelt feel looser, which I don't like. The anchors are also a little too close to the seats, and the anchor bolt and guide posts point toward the seat, so if you fold and slide the seat forward, they'll cut the leather in no time. They need to be flipped around so they point away from the seat.

    So, I'm going to try to get Wedge to make a set of brackets with these adjustments, and trade them out. Maybe my adjustments can even become an option for all Supra fitments. I'll keep you posted on my progress.

  22. #22
    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RemixPinoY View Post
    Whoa very expensive for the buttons lol. I wonder if they'll work with aftermarket heater's, I just want an OEM look for the switches.
    Yes, they should work with any aftermarket seat heaters. The OEM switch just connects a common lead (power) to an output lead (the heater or heater relay) and lights up the internal LED. There are 2 output leads and 2 LEDs (normally for left and right seats). PM me for pin numbers and a diagram if you want.

    Edit: Here are the pinouts for the switch:

    1: ground
    2: power to LH seat heater (when button pressed)
    3: illumination negative
    4: main power in
    5: illumination power
    6: power to RH seat heater (when button pressed)

    For the "illumination negative" wire, it's best to run this to a similar wire, like the one on the cigarette lighter. This is not a true ground...it is controlled by the dash-light dimmer knob so that the switch backlight will dim with the rest of the dash lights.
    Last edited by bitshftr; 02-06-2012 at 05:23 PM. Reason: spelling/typo

  23. #23
    SupraForums Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spooled_Rotten View Post
    Absolutely gorgeous

    And thanks for posting the pics of the buttons - hadn't seen those before.
    Thanks, Spooled. Pretty sweet Baltic you've got there too. I notice you're just "across the street" in Greensboro. If you find yourself driving over to Raleigh, drop me a PM...I'd love to see your car.

  24. #24
    SupraForums Member botchilah's Avatar
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    I have the exact same seats in my Supra but were off a Lancer Evo VI. I bought them 2nd hand for about 700 dollars for the pair. It's black fabric with a blue dotted center fabric that is quite grippy. Because I'm a anal about aftermarket seats, I ordered the JDM Recaro seat brackets from my friend who is the distributor. The seat brackets and sliders came in at about 600 dollars for the pair, discounted already. The seat brackets are worth the cost since it mounts really low and feels really sturdy. Having said that, your Wedge Engineering brackets are definitely a bargain!

    I dunno about your seats, but mine has the extendable thigh support piece, very handy on long drives where my thighs get weary. Since mine were JDM seats, they hug ever so slightly tighter than the regular ones sold as aftermarket items.

    It sits about half an inch or so taller than the stock seats in their lowest position but the support is phenomenal. I also have sligt back problems and the RECARO seats really help address that issue in me pretty well.

    Now that I've seen your seat btshftr, I'll probably redo my seats with black leather and alcantara with red stitching to go with my car's paint scheme as I'm red on black interior great pics!

  25. #25
    SupraForums Member Sway_NV's Avatar
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    Looks amazing! Goes well and really sets off the interior!
    I want some leather sparco's but I just can't bring myself
    to part with such a pretty penny for seats yet...

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