Join Date: Jul 2008
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Making Small Cars Safer
Small(er) cars are back in vogue, even in the US, but one problem you face as you go smaller and smaller is safety. Below a certain size, you simply don't have much crumple zones anymore. You can partly make up for it with better designed structures, advanced materials and with active safety features (shorter braking distance, better handling, etc), but passive safety improvements are always welcome.
Toyota has just announced that the iQ ultra-compact car (the "smallest four-passenger car in the world") would be the first car with a rear curtain airbag. Read on for more details.
The innovative airbag deploys from the roof lining above the rear window in the form of a curtain-like barrier. Together with the headrests, the airbag minimizes impact to the head from a colliding vehicle or parts of the hit vehicle, thus helping to reduce the severity of injuries.
Toyota expects it to approximately double the car's rear passenger head protection performance.