How to install Hyundai Tiburon seats in a Jeep Wrangler TJ


PCO6

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I needed to deal with the front driver's seat of my '03 TJ which was looking pretty bad. The options were to reupholster, recover or replace them. I chose to replace both seats with a set from an auto wrecker. It was basically the most economical way to go and I think I ended up with a better pair of seats. My basic criteria was black vinyl or leather seats from a 2 door of some sort so they would hinge forward. Seat heaters would have been nice but weren't essential. I have since put these in my LJ and XJ as well. At about $100/pr. at wrecker I don't think you can go wrong!

I must have looked at 150 cars at the wrecker I went to. The 3rd car I saw seemed to fit the bill (except for the heaters) but I had to look at them all ... "just in case". I got a set out of a '03 Hyundai Tiburon and they turned out great. The hardest part was to determine what parts from each set of seats I needed. In the end I was able to keep both sets of seats in tact and build some simple brackets to make the Tiburon seats fit. The only modification I had to make to the Tiburon seats was to was to cut away and bend some minor parts under the seat and cut away a small amount of plastic from the base of the seat on the driver's side to clear the Jeep seat belt mechanism. It made no real difference to the appearance. I was also able to retain the original TJ seat belts.

Here's how they turned out ... very comfortable!

picture.php?albumid=3124&pictureid=46451.jpg


And from the back. I even got a mesh storage net out of the deal!

picture.php?albumid=3124&pictureid=46459.jpg


I made a simple bracket out of flat bar. There was no need to weld anything. I later removed the seats, painted the brackets black and used grade 8 hardware to secure everything. The Tiburon seats can now be removed and reinstalled easier than the original seats.

picture.php?albumid=3124&pictureid=46458.jpg


The nice thing about this type of head rest is that I can hang a back pack (or ?) from them. This is my old first aid kit from Scouting.

picture.php?albumid=3124&pictureid=46460.jpg
 

derekmac

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A local guy here did the same swap, and loved it. Seats are only $34 each at the u-pull, and I've been thinking about doing it myself. If my seats weren't perfect, I probably would have by now.
 
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PCO6

PCO6

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derekmac - Do you know what year of Tiburon he used? When I went to the first wrecker there was only 1 Tiburon but the second one had 9! I went with the first one for my TJ and the second for my LJ. I also put them in my XJ and got them off a guy on Kijiji. There was quite a variety at the second wrecker from relatively simple seats in the early years to nicer ones in later years. Some also came in cloth which may be appealing to someone. None of the sets I got came with heaters but I know they exist. The 3 sets I got all came from 2003's (coincident only). I think Tiburons are now of the age where we'll see a lot of them going into wrecking yards so the supply of seats should be good for a while yet.

This is only one option of course. I saw a guy put a set from a VW Golf in his and it turned out great.
 
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PCO6

PCO6

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^^^ That's pretty neat. First time I've seen another set in a TJ! His look just like mine so I guess at least model years '03 to '06 are the same. He's right re the dimensions. Without checking I remember having to go from 11" to 17". He used 0.25" flat bar but a little bit wider than I did. I also put in a couple of 0.25" spacer blocks on each of the rear bolting points to elevate the back a bit.

Thanks for posting that. :thumbsup:
 
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Stinger

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Very nice.
I wonder if I could use those in my 70 Gladiator build?
o_O
 
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PCO6

PCO6

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Yes and No. Right now they do not tilt forward but I know I can make the seats do that. I don't run with the rear seat in my TJ or LJ so I haven't really felt the need. When time permits I plan to revise the original set up by welding a rod (about 3/8" dia.) to the round tube on the TJ/LJ brackets that rotate and release the Jeep lock. I haven't looked at it in a while but I think I will be able to install a rod with a knob on the end of it that I can operate from the driver's seat or when I open the passenger's door.

I don't know if this is standard but for my '03 TJ the tilt/tumble feature was on the passenger's seat only. On my '04 LJ both seats had it.
 

Bigcanoe

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Good to know! Yep my '04 TJ only has the feature on the passenger side, but I would love it on both :)
 
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PCO6

PCO6

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Good question Frank. On my first trip for seats I saw a set from a Honda Prelude of about the same age that I thought might work. There was also a set in BMW that I liked but it was a 4 door. You'll be much better off with a 2 dr. so the seat folds forward. I saw a set of VW Golf seats in a local TJ and they looked great. I've also guys using Chevy Cavalier seats on line. My guess is that seats of cars of this general size didn't vary in a big way. What might hang you up is how the seat sliders adapt (if you don't use your TJ ones - I didn't) and how much if any plastic has to be trimmed off of the base (mine was minor).

Happy Hunting!
 
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hamrickac

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I needed to deal with the front driver's seat of my '03 TJ which was looking pretty bad. The options were to reupholster, recover or replace them. I chose to replace both seats with a set from an auto wrecker. It was basically the most economical way to go and I think I ended up with a better pair of seats. My basic criteria was black vinyl or leather seats from a 2 door of some sort so they would hinge forward. Seat heaters would have been nice but weren't essential. I have since put these in my LJ and XJ as well. At about $100/pr. at wrecker I don't think you can go wrong!

I must have looked at 150 cars at the wrecker I went to. The 3rd car I saw seemed to fit the bill (except for the heaters) but I had to look at them all ... "just in case". I got a set out of a '03 Hyundai Tiburon and they turned out great. The hardest part was to determine what parts from each set of seats I needed. In the end I was able to keep both sets of seats in tact and build some simple brackets to make the Tiburon seats fit. The only modification I had to make to the Tiburon seats was to was to cut away and bend some minor parts under the seat and cut away a small amount of plastic from the base of the seat on the driver's side to clear the Jeep seat belt mechanism. It made no real difference to the appearance. I was also able to retain the original TJ seat belts.

Here's how they turned out ... very comfortable!

View attachment 8554

And from the back. I even got a mesh storage net out of the deal!

View attachment 8555

I made a simple bracket out of flat bar. There was no need to weld anything. I later removed the seats, painted the brackets black and used grade 8 hardware to secure everything. The Tiburon seats can now be removed and reinstalled easier than the original seats.

View attachment 8556

The nice thing about this type of head rest is that I can hang a back pack (or ?) from them. This is my old first aid kit from Scouting.

View attachment 8557
I know this is an old thread but I’m pretty sure I’ve seen the op on the forums a few times. I’ve got a set of seats and got the drivers side mocked up and the brackets made except the last 4 holes but I’m running into an issue where the slide is hitting the seatbelt roll. How did you get around this?

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