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Old 03-01-2021, 08:00 AM   #1
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VolvoGLT's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Vienna, Austria
Default Fitting Recaros in a Volvo 240

Here's how to fit Recaro seats (Idealsitz LS) in a 1980 Volvo 244 using the factory seat tracks and retaining height adjustability.

This is how I started out:

The seat tracks are two pieces - the part that is bolted to the floor has the front/back and height adjuster while the piece bolted to the seat itself is rigid and has a few holes for the height adjustment. Usually only the driver seat can be adjusted in height by using two levers (front and back can be adjusted individually) - the passenger seat height is set by using bolts. The part that is bolted to the seat is the same for driver and passenger seat though. I bought a second seat track for a driver seat to have the same adjust-ability for my passenger seat.

Here is a picture of the part that is bolted to the seat. As you can see the 240 seats wrap around the metal frame - from the outside you cannot really see much of the metal part.

I removed this part from two old seats, drilled out the spot welds of the metal plate that holds the seat cover and then sliced it front to back. First I tried to make it work without cutting it apart but that resulted in a seat position that was way too high.

Next step was to straighten everything using a hammer and an abrasive disc. After that I welded a rod to the rearmost part and two U shaped pieces between the two outer parts. The U shaped channels are more rigid that a flat piece of steel but since they protrude further down I had to make some cuts to make room for the height adjusting levers.
You have to be careful where you place the U channels as they shouldn't interfere with the levers but also place the seat in an acceptable position. I used the seat back position as a reference - the seat back of the Recaro is now in the same position as the OEM seats. In hindsight I would have moved the Recaros maybe an inch further back.

As you can see the rear bolt holes for the seat are very close to the outer edge (Recaros have a left/right bolt spacing of 405mm and the outer parts are around 410mm apart) - no way to put a bolt through the holes as the bolt head would hit.
Therefore I welded a reinforcing plate to the outside of the old seat track and made a window to clear the bolt head. I also built up metal on the inside of the U channel to make it sturdier where I drilled the seat bolt holes.

This is what I got after cleaning and painting:

Bolted to the Recaro seat:

Passenger seat in the car (driver seat is on highest setting in the front - passenger seat on low setting front and rear):


The Volvo seats are tilted back from the factory and the Recaros even more. My seat tracks further enhance this as I had to leave additional clearance above the front height adjuster holes but not in the back. Therefore I put the seats on the lowest setting in the front and mid setting in the back - this mitigates the increased tilt.

Last edited by VolvoGLT; 03-01-2021 at 09:44 AM..
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Old 03-01-2021, 08:20 AM   #2
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Back in Puerto Rico

That looks good!
'95 855 Turbo - SOLD
'93 244 N/A - 18" Eikers, IPD Sways, GT Style Braces, Eibach Red Springs, Bilstein Tourings, M47

IG: @stock_bricks
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Old 03-01-2021, 09:18 AM   #3
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Join Date: Jul 2020
Location: NW Virginia

That's the way to do it - nice work & writeup.
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Old 03-03-2021, 12:11 PM   #4
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Join Date: Mar 2008

Nice job! My wife want's me to put Recaro seats in my 1961 MK 1 MG MIDGET don't know if I have the room, we will see.
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Old 03-03-2021, 01:11 PM   #5
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: PDX

Cool! I have some stock seat bases that I kept for this very reason. Good to know they don't add too much height!

Herr Harlard am Erstens

1979 242 DL

Originally Posted by t8fanning View Post
My knob has a big chunk of steel on it
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