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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With all these rival auto makers clawing at Volvo's safety crown, I've been looking for reassurance that I did indeed make a wise choice in buying Volvo. Reading this 2005 article really restored my confidence, and provides a pretty solid defense to any one touting the number of stars earned by their car. Sorry if this is a repost - neuro

Volvo Responds to NHTSA and IIHS Results: "Real World" Safety Research vs. One Crash Test
Volvo Vehicles are Designed for the Decathlon, Not the 100m Dash

IRVINE, Calif., Dec. 9 -- Real World safety is Volvo's highest priority. It's a dedication we have demonstrated time and again through the application of industry-leading expertise and modern facilities to enhance safety and pioneer our new safety systems. Designing vehicles with Real World safety is Volvo's methodology and priority. Excelling in one particular nation's governmental or third party tests is not.

In third-party tests, such as the recent American IIHS Top Safety Pick Awards, or the NHSTA Crash Tests, vehicles are ranked based on the performance of front, side, and rear crashes. These rankings are based on results from one test vehicle, at one impact speed, and one angle of impact. While any form of testing can be a positive step, safety is a MUCH more complex subject than just one single crash test.

Volvo builds vehicles with safety systems developed from data contained in an Accident Research Database that dates back to the early 1970s. This database contains the intricate details of more than 35,000 collisions involving Volvo vehicles with more than 50,000 occupants.

Rest assured that this information is used to design our vehicles with safety systems to meet or exceed world class requirements. More importantly, it enables us to build vehicles that help protect occupants in many Real World situations, not just one specific crash.

Consider, for a moment, the following analogy for Volvo's holistic approach to safety:

A decathlon athlete must perform well in different 10 events to win first
prize. While that means they are not "world class" in one particular
category, it also means they are the BEST all-around athlete.
That is how Volvo views the field of safety. While each government and third party test will only address one type of impact, at one speed, in one event, Volvo considers the consequences of real world factors.

For example, if a vehicle is hit from the side, then pushed into a ditch, how well will it protect the occupants? Or how will a vehicle fair in a side impact followed by a rear collision? The vehicle should be able to help protect occupants in many different situations, not just one test into one barrier.

This holistic commitment has led Volvo to equip its vehicles with an extensive list of standard safety features:

* IC (Inflatable Curtain) to help protect the head of all outboard

* IC was a World first for Volvo in 1998.

* Pyrotechnic pretension seat belts.

* SIPS (Side Impact Protection System) body structure with extra
reinforcement in the doors, door pillars and dashboard to improve
protection in a side collision.

* SIPS was a world first for Volvo in 1995.

* SIPS air bag for front row occupants.

* Volvo's research indicates that SIPS and the SIPS air bag help
reduce injuries by approximately 57%.

* Adaptive driver and front passenger airbags that monitor the force of
the impact and help adapt inflation to the severity of the collision.

* WHIPS (Whiplash Protection System).

* Volvo's research and independent studies performed by IIHS and the
Swedish Insurance Company Folksam show that WHIPS helps to reduce
injuries by up to 50%.

* ABS/EBD (Antilock Braking System/Electronic Brakeforce Distribution)
regulates the brake force to assist the driver in maintaining control
of the vehicle under emergency braking.

* RSC (Roll Stability Control) is designed to assist the driver in
maintaining control during an extreme manoeuvre could lead to a
roll-over incident.

* RSC was a world first for Volvo in 2002.
Volvo will continue to innovate and be one of the safest cars, based on decades of innovation and ongoing technological leadership. If you require additional information about safety, please contact your local Volvo Representative.

- Clive Bengtsson

Volvo Crash Tester

Premium Member
39,081 Posts
Re: Interesting article re: Volvo and IIHS/NHTSA (dagovna)

Quote, originally posted by dagovna »
Clive is a "pain researcher" @ Volvo.

I wish I could have HALF his pain tolerance!


66 Posts
Re: Interesting article re: Volvo and IIHS/NHTSA (neuro)

I heard a news report the other day to the effect that the industry now does so well in the crash tests that the IIHS is abandoning testing (frontal only?) and will now accept crash test data from the manufacturers own testing. This may be a good thing for Volvo, but how about the others? There can be no denying that the bad publicity for some manufacturers has boosted their efforts. So is this letting the fox back into the henhouse?

109 Posts
Re: Interesting article re: Volvo and IIHS/NHTSA (surfcity)

The IIHS did say that it will conduct frontal "audit" tests from time to time to keep automakers honest...but I think this is bad news for consumers in general. Without the guarantee that their models will be exposed if they have safety design deficiencies, I think some automakers may be tempted to again cut costs where we can't see it...until we're six feet under. Now, more than ever, it is more important to choose a vehicle from an automaker that has made safety a company cornerstone from day 1: Volvo, Saab, and Mercedes-Benz.

4,338 Posts
Re: Interesting article re: Volvo and IIHS/NHTSA (Geniusjustin)

I don't understand why IIHS doesn't increase the speed of their crash tests? Now that almost every single new model gets the green light. I would like to see crash tests at +10mph and I would like to see crash test on a diagonal. Is it that hard to vary the tests? Maybe they need to ask Volvo for a little input on how to have more difficult crash tests if they are too easy now?

Volvo Crash Test:

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