HAMBURG — Of all the fascinating pre-pandemic seat concepts reappearing at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg this week, Jamco’s upmarket Quest for Elegance staggered business class seat — which so impressed during the 2019 AIX show — is doing so on-screen in virtual form, with the Japanese seatmaker’s Venture PSZ (Personalised Sound Zone) product taking the mockup centre stage at its booth this year.
But Jamco hasn’t been resting on Quest’s plaudits from three years ago, or indeed from its win of a 2022 iF Design Award, with progress continuing on the seat and updates based on feedback from customers at the 2019 show.
Runway Girl Network sat down with Jamco’s director of sales and marketing Jeremy Hunter and director of research & development John Cornell ahead of the show to learn more.
“Quest for Elegance,” Hunter tells RGN, “was really originally designed to bring in that premium hotel in the sky feel, with an efficient methodology to allow a very competitive density with features such as the angled tilt monitor, and sweeping surfaces that align with the angle of that monitor, to maximise the experience in the sky.”
That angled tilt monitor isn’t just about securing a variety of viewing angles for varying heights of passengers when seated upright, reclined or in bed mode. It’s about the way that the carveout for the monitor tilt creates extra space, especially around the knee area in seated mode and in the hip area when in bed mode.
It’s one of the more impressive why-didn’t-I-think-of-that innovations in the world of staggered business class, and Jamco has been building on it.
The company’s engineers, Hunter explains, “looked at how they could make the best use of its efficiency, integrating a lot of the same ideas that we utilise with our Venture product, looking to find ways to mitigate where possible, looking to mitigate unnecessary surfaces where possible, such as secondary trim, that’s not necessary.”
In terms of “the evolution that has occurred since the 2019 show,” he says, “we took a lot of input from the airlines and the lessors during the show in 2019, and we refined the design, noting that the pandemic had a significant impact in our industry as a whole.”
A key piece of feedback was around the meal table, which previously slid out from the horizontal surface at console level in a rather delightfully whimsical James Bondesque kind of fashion.
Alas, this bit of elegance didn’t survive contact with the industry, and particularly discussion of the use case of passengers wanting to get up out of their seat with the table deployed, Jamco’s Cornell explains. “Because of that feedback, we’ve moved the meal table to actually come from under the monitor and under the console, so it stows all the way in front of the knee space. So maintaining that very critical knee space that had good feedback from the customers. And now the meal table slides aft towards the passenger.”
A new option for airlines is a legrest, allowing a more Z-bed position, although airlines that prefer to save on the weight and complexity will have the option for the baseline version, where the legrest function is fulfilled by the ottoman.
Jamco has made substantial progress on the R&D side, and is actively marketing the seat at present. The selling point for Quest, Jamco’s execs explain, is partly the behind-the-monitor space and partly the trim, finish and overall elegance of the product.
With its own dynamic testing facility, and given that Quest is a forward-facing seat and thus would appear set to be among the less complicated crash testing seats at that stage these days, Jamco expects to have the product ready for installation in 2024 or early 2025.
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All images credited to Jamco