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    VWVortex


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    Thread: Seating Options

    1. 09-10-2012 01:51 AM #1
      First post in forever, so save me some grief if I'm beating a dead horse.

      I have an 03 Jetta as a DD, and have had an 08 Grand Caravan SE and now have a brand new Grand Caravan SXT as company vehicles.

      Long story short, what's the situation with Stow N Go on the Routans? I've heard it wasn't an option for certain years, I assumed possibly because of suspension changes between the Chrysler chassis and the VW, yet I see an ad for a 2011 SE that appears to have the same fold flat seats my Caravan has.

      The Ad in Question

      I'm looking down the road at a career change in the future, and currently DJ on the side. I need a van to haul equipment as what I have won't fit in the Jetta anymore. I can't justify a cargo van, nor do I really want to be stuck with Dodge since neither Chevrolet or Ford make a minivan anymore.

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      09-10-2012 03:15 AM #2
      Its the same setup. On the Routan, the third row folds flat but the second row has to be removed. You can install stow n go middle row seats though, someone has done them on here. The storage bins are still on the car as well.

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      09-10-2012 11:53 AM #3
      As part of the contract with VW, Chryco did not license the stow-n-go or swivel-n-go seating arrangement for the mid-row captain chairs. The false floor is still there on the Routan where the stow-n-go seats would have folded down underneath had the vehicle been badged Dodge or Chrysler, but it is only used for storage in the Routan. The seat-backs on the Routan captain chairs will fold flat over the seat-bottom cushion, and from there you can release the back "legs" of the seat and sort of roll them forward where they fold up against the back of the front seats (but above the under-floor storage). And from there, as tuanies mentioned, you can remove the mid-row captain chairs altogether.

      The trade-off for the lack of stow-n-go on the Routan is the mid-row captain chairs on the Routan are more comfortable than the Chryco stow-n-go seats. Chryco made vast improvements with the stow-n-go seating beginning with the 2011 MY, both in terms of comfort and (I believe) adding the ability to slide them forward and backwards, but the Routan seats are still more comfortable.

      The stow-n-go seats are plug & play on the Routan though, and the seats are readily available from the companies that do handicap van conversions. There is a thread here on that. It's about $500 total for the two seats and the replacement cover over the floor storage to accommodate storing the stow -n go seats. The Chryco interiors are not exact matches with VW, but you can get really close with the leather seats (to my knowledge, Chryco does not offer the leatherette/pleather/vinyl option that VW offers on the SE).

      The third row bench seat on the Routan does fold down just like the Chryco vans, but VW simply doesn't brand that as "stow-n-go". Just as tuanies stated.

    4. 09-10-2012 02:08 PM #4
      Cool. That's exactly what I wanted to hear. The under floor storage covers are deceiving to someone who's been looking at both the GC and the Routan. I like the fact that the rear seats fold flat though. If it's that inexpensive to install the fold flat seats, I may do it down the road if I pick one of these up.

    5. Member PaulAP's Avatar
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      09-10-2012 04:15 PM #5
      Personally I think the "Stow 'n Go" are not all that big a deal.

      A buddy has had his Chrysler van for going on 3 years, and tell me that he has only folded
      them twice, and the VW seats are NOT hard to take out (I've also done it twice).
      The VW seats are a lot more comfortable, especially on long trips, and because you don't have
      have to worry about putting the seats into the under floor storage, that storage is actually used.

      We keep beach chairs, blankets etc and our emergency roadside kit in there. My buddy with
      the Chrysler van keeps his under floor storage bins empty in case he needs to "Stow 'n Go".

      Just my 2 cents.
      Last edited by PaulAP; 09-10-2012 at 04:27 PM. Reason: because I can't spell.
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      09-10-2012 09:37 PM #6
      Quote Originally Posted by PaulAP View Post
      Personally I think the "Stow 'n Go" are not all that big a deal.

      A buddy has had his Chrysler van for going on 3 years, and tell me that he has only folded
      them twice, and the VW seats are NOT hard to take out (I've also done it twice).
      The VW seats are a lot more comfortable, especially on long trips
      We've had our van less than a year and have had multiple times we could've used the SnG instead of lugging those heavy seats in and out...which is a handful for my wife so my back is the one that gets the abuse. The van can hold a good amount of stuff!

      Quote Originally Posted by PaulAP View Post
      and because you don't have
      have to worry about putting the seats into the under floor storage, that storage is actually used.

      We keep beach chairs, blankets etc and our emergency roadside kit in there. My buddy with
      the Chrysler van keeps his under floor storage bins empty in case he needs to "Stow 'n Go".

      Just my 2 cents.
      We keep our extras in the back cargo area and thus the mid-section storage goes unused 99% of the time. If there was stuff in them then it obviously could get reshuffled much more quickly and easily than a chair.

      So, to the OP, you'll need to figure out how things will work out for you. I'm guessing with DJ equipment the SnG would be the better option for you.
      Last edited by Air_Cooled_Nut; 09-10-2012 at 10:57 PM.
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    7. Member PaulAP's Avatar
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      09-11-2012 11:03 AM #7
      Yeah, I guess it depends how often you need the seats out of the way.
      For me taking them out is easy, but I can understand for some it isn't so.
      I also don't like keeping stuff in the rear bin where thieves can see it.

      Given the option... If I needed "Stow 'n Go", I would still go with the Routan,
      and swap in "Stow 'n Go" seats"...

      Yeah, all around I think the Routan is that much nicer.

      Oh, and as for when you DJ, if everything fits in the back with the 3rd row stowed,
      then the 2nd row "Stow 'n Go" may not be an issue. Guess that depends on how
      much gear you need to carry around.
      Last edited by PaulAP; 09-11-2012 at 11:08 AM.
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    8. Member VWroutanvanman's Avatar
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      09-11-2012 12:05 PM #8
      Back in the eighties, the Chryco vans offered as an option a rolling shade thing that covered the back area behind the rear seats. Many station wagons have that feature, and so does the current Caravan and T&C (at least available through Mopar parts), and will fit the Routan as well. The european only Chrysler Voyager offers the shade as an option, and I've seen it on the Dodge Mopar website somewhere. Instant protection for valuables in the rear well.

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      09-11-2012 01:08 PM #9
      I loved having that roller-shade device in my old Subaru station wagon (1986 GL). In addition to the protection allowed by hiding stuff in the vehicle, it was also good as yet another barrier from direct sunlight, which is a consideration down here in July and August. I'll have to look more closely on the Routan b/c I don't see where the clips would go. It also seems like it would be in the way of the folding third-row bench, so perhaps more hassle than it's worth. Especially already having the under-floor storage option anyway, if you want to hide valuables from plain sight or direct sunlight. But cool to know it's available.

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      09-11-2012 06:12 PM #10
      I'd like to remove the third seat and have a cover for the resulting under-floor storage, since we never seem to carry more than 4 adults. Don't mind removing the second row seats once in a while, as they are lighter and easier to remove than the '99 T & C we had. Small price to pay for second-row seats that are as comfortable as the front seats. My two cents...

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      09-11-2012 10:11 PM #11
      The shade mounting brackets install with two well-nuts on each side for the shade roll, and two each for the clips, and the ends of the shade are spring loaded so the shade is easy to remove, so stowing the 3rd row seats is no problem at all. One question I have is: Does the shade fit vans with auto hatch openers, as the left side pillar is wider than the right pillar. So some research is needed of the European Chrysler Voyager to see if it is offered with the auto hatch. And, of course, there is the color match problem with the Routans unique gray and ceylon interiors. The sierra stone should be a direct match with Chryslers color.

      Also, on removing the 3rd row seats: Mopar does have a bin that fits in the rear well with a cover, and then you could buy a mat to cover the area behind the mid-row seats. And you'll be removing a couple hundred pounds of weight.
      Last edited by VWroutanvanman; 09-12-2012 at 12:22 AM.

    12. Member PaulAP's Avatar
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      09-12-2012 12:47 PM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by cscsc View Post
      I'd like to remove the third seat and have a cover for the resulting under-floor storage
      It sounds like you are looking for this...

      Cargo Bin, Third Row - Part # 82208765 MSRP $143.00
      with carpeted lid (no table)

      or for a twist, this...

      Cargo Bin, Third Row - Part # 82208767AB MSRP $165.00
      The vinyl-covered lid converts into a handy table.

      The Stow `n Go seating provides several feet of extra storage
      space. The Third Row Cargo Bin allows you to conveniently
      store items out of sight. This hard plastic cargo bin fills the third
      row seating bin. The bin is lightweight, removable, washable
      and includes two interior nets to create compartments. The lid
      fits securely on top of the bin.

      http://www.mopar.com/chrysler/town-a...2451/272/4973/

      Cheaper from these guys... http://www.oemopar.com/
      Last edited by PaulAP; 09-12-2012 at 02:06 PM. Reason: added description
      VW 4 Life... For life, that's what the ex said... but i mean it...

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      09-12-2012 01:45 PM #13
      [QUOTE=PaulAP;78946043]It sounds like you are looking for this...


      Thanks, but that's not quite it - to do what I was suggesting, the third seats would need to be removed from the van, permanently in my case, and a hinged cover, carpeted to match the cargo floor, added in their place. The space underneath is already carpeted, perfect for carrying stuff out of sight. A removeable bin, while useful for some things, would just be another thing to manage and clean, and each time the third seat was folded, it would have to be removed.

      Chrysler almost had it right, like the guy that named his soft drink 6-UP - so close!

    14. Member PaulAP's Avatar
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      09-12-2012 02:02 PM #14
      Quote Originally Posted by VWroutanvanman View Post
      Back in the eighties, the Chryco vans offered as an option a rolling shade thing that covered the back area behind the rear seats. Many station wagons have that feature, and so does the current Caravan and T&C (at least available through Mopar parts), and will fit the Routan as well. The european only Chrysler Voyager offers the shade as an option, and I've seen it on the Dodge Mopar website somewhere. Instant protection for valuables in the rear well.
      Quote Originally Posted by VWroutanvanman View Post
      The shade mounting brackets install with two well-nuts on each side for the shade roll, and two each for the clips, and the ends of the shade are spring loaded so the shade is easy to remove, so stowing the 3rd row seats is no problem at all.
      It sounds like you have seen this item. I'd be interested in it, but cannot find one anywhere.

      The closest I can find is this one...

      Chrysler Town & Country / Dodge Grand Caravan
      Cargo Area Security Cover [82209593AB]

      and it shows Vehicle Compatibility: 2004-2007.

      If you could find one for the current model and post a link, that would be great.
      VW 4 Life... For life, that's what the ex said... but i mean it...

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      09-15-2012 11:03 PM #15
      Btw I love my captain's chairs on second row. I remove them to save weight when I don't need them.

      I also can use them as seating when tailgating, and they roll too

      The third row isn't nearly as comfortable as the second row.
      2011 Calla Lily White Volkswagen Routan SEL Premium

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