2013 Tesla Model S: Jump Seats
March 22, 2013
It's pretty obvious the Model S jump seats aren't intended for adults. I tried them once while the car was parked and I have to admit, I've been trapped in trunks that were roomier (ahhh, Vegas). Because I don't have kids, I figured I'd have to leave jump seat evaluation to one of our editors that do. But my sister's desperation to have someone watch her three children while she was off skiing in Utah left her no other choice but to have the infamous uncle "Marky" in charge.
So, I took this unusual opportunity to stuff my nieces in the trunk. I have to admit this would be my preferred seat if I were still a kid. Anything different has a great novelty to it. The taller of the two just barely fit, and I was nervous about her head being so close to the glass, but she seemed to be fine.
Driving around, though, I was pretty nervous about getting rear-ended. Fortunately, tailgaters stayed away. The seats themselves are pretty stout, certainly more substantial than the third-row seats in our old Mitsubishi Outlander. Those things felt as strong as a 99-Cent Store beach chair. The child-seat restraints were well placed and had enough range to fit either kid perfectly.
I took the whole gaggle out to dinner that night. Since I'm not well-versed in child care (I can barely maintain myself), I didn't know that a full can of a soft drink would turn the little one into a close approximation of the Great Cornholio. Hilarity ensued as she was rattling off like she was speaking in tongues.
In the end, I did discover one drawback to putting kids in the jump seats. The rear window was plastered with fingerprints. I suppose if a younger uncle Marky was back there, face prints and perhaps "other" prints would be smeared all over the glass, too.
I'd guess these seats were intended for occasional and novelty use, not on an everyday basis. In any case, I think they're pretty cool, though they'd be even better if they were easily removable.
Mark Takahashi, Automotive Editor @ 1,641 miles