Southco plays a vital role in the automotive industry as a tier 1 and tier 2 supplier of access hardware for interior and exterior applications. From noise shields to globe boxes to load floors, Southco has the knowledge and capability to help you keep it secure.

Ergonomic Center Console Design for Automotive Interiors


With changing design trends, Automotive design engineers are adapting their specifications to overcome a wide range of center console challenges such as vibration and noise issues, and overall functionality of the design. Ergonomics have also become a key focus of center console design as well, as consumer usability and operation expectations continue to influence the overall design of the vehicle.

When developing center console applications, automotive interior designers must take into account not only the functionality, but also consumers’ emotional reactions to the look and feel of a vehicle’s interior. Everything from materials used, to ease of operation and general appearance, ultimately shape customer perception of quality towards the automotive manufacturer.

However, functionality is just as important to the design as aesthetics – a well-planned center console application positions functionality at the heart of the design. Successful center console solutions enhance operation and improve usability for the end user by ensuring that the lid opens easily and remains open – delivering greater convenience to the end user accessing its interior.

Center Console

When selecting a hinging solution for a center console application, the core technology should offer the following benefits:

  • Smooth operating  efforts during opening and closing of the center console lid
  • Quiet operation – no buzz, squeak or rattle (BSR) during opening and closing
  • Ability to hold the center console lid or inner tray steady at any position
  • Assistance with opening heavier lids
  • Ability to stop and lock the lid into a predetermined position
  • Validated and customizable to any unique design requirement
  • Compact design that takes up minimal application space
  • Adjustment free service life

Southco’s position control hinges feature best-in-class constant torque functionality that enables the center console lid to hold open at any position and prevents it from falling or unexpectedly closing. Each position control hinge is constructed of robust materials and designed with a reliable and repeatable cycle life to last the lifetime of the vehicle, with minimal parts needed for assembly.  Southco’s position control hinges offer a proven, validated solution that not only reduces production and tooling costs, but also facilitates the incorporation of the latest interior designs, and satisfies technical demands.

For more information regarding Southco’s line of positioning hinges, request your Southco Handbook today.

Design Guidelines for Automotive Headrest Positioning Applications

Many headrest assemblies available to automotive manufacturers in today’s market are limited in their flexibility and installation capabilities. Because end users desire headrests that are supportive and easy to maneuver, and automotive OEMs must control costs associated with production, design engineers often face challenges in balancing comfort and basic

Twice As Much Torque to Lift and Position Heavier Items with Ease

Southco’s new E6-600 Constant Torque Position Control Hinge features increased holding power and lightweight aluminum construction. The E6-600  Constant Torque Position Control Hinge allows the user to hold a door or panel securely at any desired angle, and delivers twice as much torque to support larger, heavier items. E6 class positioning hinges p

Positioning Hinge Selection in Medical Equipment Applications

Constant torque hinges use engineered friction systems to provide continuous resistance against motion. Southco’s line of constant torque hinges is ideal for applications where it is necessary to easily hold open and position doors and panels, such as wall charting stations, medical cabinets and diagnostic equipment with heavy lids. When opening a wall

Ten questions to ask when designing in a hinge

Part 10 in a 10-part series on specifying hinges We spent the last several weeks discussing different factors for specifying hinges. After all, incorporating hinges early into designs helps keep costs down and options open. So here, for your reference, is a quick summary of questions to ask in the early stages of your application. They will save you time,

Hinges and aesthetics

Part 9 in a 10-part series on specifying hinges Okay, so you’re looking to optimize the overall quality and cost effectiveness of your application. When it comes to hinges, it is important to balance performance needs with aesthetic judgment. Looks DO matter and can greatly influence a product’s overall look and perception of quality. Large, extern

Hinges and Material Requirements

Part 8 in a 10-part series on specifying hinges There are many factors to consider when selecting a hinge. We have discussed opening angle, frame configuration, industry specs and installation method, among others. But a critical consideration not to be overlooked may seem like the simplest: material. When deciding between material options, be sure to consid

Hinges and Installation Method

 Part 7 in a 10-part series on specifying hinges The method of installation is an often overlooked consideration when selecting a hinge. Manufacturing tolerances in the design and installation process can impact our hinge specifications, especially where aligning the hinges on the door and frame are concerned. Slotted holes may help compensate for manufact

Hinges and industry specifications

Part 6 in a 10-part series on specifying hinges Selecting the proper hinge can sometimes be more challenging that we might expect. In addition to considering cost, aesthetics, strength requirements and door configurations, we need to also consider any regulations or specifications that might affect our applications. For example, hinges used on outdoor

Considering the opening angle: Detent and torque hinges

Part 4 in a 10-part series on specifying hinges We have all been there: Trying to keep a door open with our foot, a shoe or something else we find lying around. Today’s applications increasingly require hands–free access (or a really patient friend who will hold the door for you). If this is the case with your application, consider using a hinge with