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Discussion Starter #1
was looking at the configurator on Subaru's site. I never noticed this when testing the car.... are the 8 and 7 passenger 2nd row left and right seats actually pretty much identical? save for adding a shoulder belt point on the left seat that will be used for the center jump seat? I can't tell if the center jump seat back folds down independently of the left seat.... i know the seatback protector covers the left andcenter seat together. I'm asking all this because i'm wondering if it basically means the seating comfort/position/ etc. would be essentially identcal for the left and right seats regardless of whether you get the center seat or not.
 

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2020 Ascent
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112 Posts
We’ve got the 8 seat. The bench is I guess a 60/40 situation, the middle seat is part of the drivers side passenger seat. The Captains chairs have arm rests and grab handle but I believe the seating position is indentical as far as height and legroom are concerned.
 

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2019 Ascent Touring (CWP)
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Other than what side the arm rests are for obvious reasons, I do not believe there are any meaningful differences between the right and left 2nd row captain's chairs. They are very comfortable, too, IMHO, not that I get to ride in them since I'm the only driver for the Ascent other than when my daughter occasionally steals is for an errand and is low on gas in her Outback. To date, Professor Dr. SWMBO has never driven it. LOL (her choice)
 

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2020 Ascent, 2011 WRX, 2001 Forester
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2nd row captain seats are more comfortable than the 8 passenger 2nd row bench. However, the 2nd row bench folds flat unlike the captain seats (they stick up more when folded).

For us we have 2 dogs and a son. We wanted the bench for the dogs (more area for them when folded, it was a pain with captains in our Yukon), plus for when we haul stuff (already transported countless doors and other home improvement items where it being flat helped).

We did not want our son to be uncomfortable, so we had him for a test ride in the bench. He was totally fine with them (he is a 15 year old), and this is after having captains in the 2015 Yukon. He also preferred having the center seat/console as something to put his arm on, lean on with a pillow, etc, something he missed doing with our former Outback.

At the end of the day there was very little gain to the captains, and far more gain from the bench for us.

If I could change one thing it would be to have the 60/40 split be reversed. Having the 60% on the passenger side would allow longer/wider cargo to be transported while still being able to have someone sit behind the driver.
 

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2020 Ascent, 2011 WRX, 2001 Forester
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Oh, and after a year and a half, neither our son or other adults have complained about comfort with the bench. This would be 4+ hour rides too.
 

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i purcahsed a touring, but had to take a road trip with 8 people over the christmas holiday. Renting a Suburban would have been 1200 to 1500 for 8 days and I just couldn't swallow that. I purchased a second row bench from a wrecked Ascent and installed it. No one noticed a difference in comfort and I was able to convert my 7 seater to an 8 seater for $400 shipped. I have since swapped the original seats back in and bagged and stored the bench in the garage. Best of both worlds!



6817
 

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2020, Ascent Limited CWP, 2010 Legacy Limited SWP, 2013 STI Hatchback PBP
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i purcahsed a touring, but had to take a road trip with 8 people over the christmas holiday. Renting a Suburban would have been 1200 to 1500 for 8 days and I just couldn't swallow that. I purchased a second row bench from a wrecked Ascent and installed it. No one noticed a difference in comfort and I was able to convert my 7 seater to an 8 seater for $400 shipped. I have since swapped the original seats back in and bagged and stored the bench in the garage. Best of both worlds!
This is a great idea! now i have to find a wrecked ascent for the 2nd row!
 

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Everyone has their preferences and needs. We got the Ascent (we sold the 7 year old Outback) because we needed more seats when my son and his family come from 3000 miles away and it becomes a carload of 6. Before purchase, I tried the bench seat but thought the center was not really meant for adults, or at least some of us adults. When you look on line in the Features area at the two layouts, it is a dog, not a person in the middle! I found the 3rd row acceptable for me for a few hours in a trip if the captain's chairs were not all the way back.
 

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[OffTopic]

@latapx,

Depending on how handy you are with a welder.... You could create a base frame for that bench so the mounting points do not get tweaked as things get stored on it... OR if your minion pulls it out to sit on.

I did that for two spare seats from an old `01 Subaru RS... We use them for garage sales, outdoor movie nights and of course for the below image. Mounting strips of Delrin on the bottom to act as skids...

The passenger seat is in Minion #2's room...

6842


[/OffTopic]
 

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[OffTopic]

@latapx,

Depending on how handy you are with a welder.... You could create a base frame for that bench so the mounting points do not get tweaked as things get stored on it... OR if your minion pulls it out to sit on.

I did that for two spare seats from an old `01 Subaru RS... We use them for garage sales, outdoor movie nights and of course for the below image. Mounting strips of Delrin on the bottom to act as skids...

The passenger seat is in Minion #2's room...

View attachment 6842

[/OffTopic]
I've spent A LOT of time behind the wheel on racetracks. I've tried a few sim setups like above that some friends of mine have...I SUCK. There is not enough feel. I guess i just need to spend more time doing it, but it just ends up frustrating me lol. Prefer to be behind the wheel of the car!!
 
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It's all about the settings of the wheel... People set it up to their own preference which can vary between people... I found a medium for the Minions + Wife*

*Wife's favorite game is WreckFest, with the lawnmower races, and figure-8 racing... Although she's not keen of being able to run over opponents on the demo derby option, lol

6843
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I did some more test sits and drives in some Ascents and Atlases last night.... In both, the captains vs bench seats difference isn't much for me. In both styles...bigger problem is that for tall people, you're ass is too close to the floor and it's tough to sit with a good knee angle for longer times. I rarely have passengers... so I guess I'm not worrying about this too much...and will probably end up with 2nd row bench in in order to get a flat floor.
If either type of seat were easier to remove so i could recover the utility space... i might opt for that.
 

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Either seating arrangement is just as easy to get in or out (4 bolts passenger side, 5 bolts driver's side). The 2/3 portion of the bench seat weighs over 80lbs so its a bit awkward to deal with. The 1/3 side is around 50 so its easier to handle. I just did a 3700 miles trip in the ascent with the bench seat. Kids are 24, 19, 15, 14, 14, and 12...they were all fine on the trip and they had a ton of crap with them in the car. i keep telling them, hey I'm going to be comfortable in my driver's seat...the more crap you bring the more uncomfortable you'll be! But they still bring it! lol
 
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