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  1. Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Alright let's just flame

    RE: Smart car: The rate of collapse is so great because it went from 70mph to 0mph in a fraction of a second and with the relatively small crumple zone the car made it intact but if there was somebody or at least a dummy I'm sure it would have registered a huge force on its body.

    RE: Size of crumple zones: You're right about the less the mass is on a vehicle, the less energy it has to absorb. But when it comes to two vehicle collisions and not just a vehicle vs a non-moving object (fixed or not) the other vehicle will also send its kinetic energy into the other vehicle. This actually makes those insurance safety rating tests provide half the story. What if another car is traveling towards you at the same speed but head on? Of course the speed is doubled. So regardless of the mass of the vehicle in subject, if the other vehicle is much heavier, the vehicle in subject will either not be able to withstand the kinetic energy of the other vehicle in addition to its own kinetic energy, or at least marginally withstand it but with possible injuries. Hence, it will work twice as much to prevent occupant injury/death. This makes it even harder when offset crashes occur because all or most of the kinetic energy is targeted to only one side of the vehicle frame so it absorbs twice as much energy from each car. That's why offset crashes are the most severe head-on collisions, and full-frontal impacts come in second.

    RE: Princess Di's death: She was not wearing her seatbelt. Her bodyguard in the front passenger seat, I believe, was wearing his, so he survived. This is a common topic discussed in Benz forums. Had she been in one, even if the vehicle collided with an infinite mass object (the tunnel posts/dividers) the vehicle would still have saved her because she was in the rear seat and was farther away from the point of impact than the front passengers.

    RE: Vehicle mass/weight: True, a heavier car can be made nimble and lighter cars can be more agile at extremes. But cars these days are designed with good handling properties especially with the advent of electronic stability control systems, ABS, and the like to maintain control and avoid accidents. I cannot comment on what portion of heavy cars is dedicated to crash structure, but I can vouch that for those luxury cars a lot of the extra weight is due to added equipment, electronics, sound insulation/deadening, etc that most non luxury cars do without. Like you said, manufacturers can opt to use a different grade of steel to make crash structures stiffer, and in these luxury cars where a bonnet is still a bonnet (and not just half of one) I'm pretty sure there's ample room for advanced crumple zones. So not all heavy cars are heavy due to the crumple zones, but it's always good to have a heavy car yet one that can still get out of harm's way in an emergency.

    RE: Harnesses: Manufacturers who install pre-tensioners on self-retracting belts (in accidents) will have to install double or maybe even triple the number of electronics in these cars and have to use more space, so car prices will definitely be higher. The 3-point seatbelt these days are pretty good for what they are already. In the current S-class, PRE-SAFE actually triggers near or at the point of collision to adjust the driver to the safest crash position by inflating the seat bolsters, tightening the seatbelts, closing the sunroof, adjusting the seats, and braking the car properly to minimize the kinetic forces that could act on the passengers. Like you said restraint is key. Restraint position is even better because some people (like my stubborn brother in law) always drives gangsta style with the seatbacks nearly fully reclined. In that position he has a really high chance of sliding forward in an accident despite wearing his seatbelt.

    I've felt safe in our Honda Jazz when I drove it there for 2 months, but something else was lacking that did not inspire that confidence level whenever I'm driving on the highway. I guess its lightness and lack of sound insulation made it feel nervous and jittery at speed. Driver confidence is another critical safety issue that not a lot of manufacturers focus on. There was a test done that showed the S-class provided the lowest heart rate while driving compared to the Audi A8 I think and the BMW 7.

    RE: F1 driver health: Their physical condition is still of debate of whether they are considered athletes or not. I've read somewhere that they lose a good amount of water after a race so their rigorous training is just as crucial. On the other hand, normal passenger cars need not to be pushed to the limit so average condition drivers (sedentary people too) can still drive them without as great a risk as those F1 drivers face. Like you said, they need to have the presence of mind to do as they were trained to do. But for normal drivers, I'm pretty sure a good number of people who drive don't even know what happened until they regained consciousness again right after an accident. This is what happened to my friend in the Accord, it happened so fast. This is why passive safety is of prime concern and not just active safety, because he never saw it coming. Whereas in a race, you can still predict to some extent what can happen, because the drivers are trained to face these kinds of things.

  2. Join Date
    Mar 2005
    smart car? pang nabangga eto hindi ka mag-crumple tatalbog ka parang bola ng bilyar kung san tamaan

  3. Join Date
    Jan 2007
    kahit ano pang technical explanation about compact cars, kakatakot padin padin kahit papano yong bigger head collision mas lalo na.naiimagine ko agad after ng impact sa liit ng mga compact cars baka compartment nalang matira e.anyways, pag oras munang mamatay regardless na yan kahit ano pa o san kapa nakasakay.pero takot padin akong magsasakay sa mga compact nayan, psychological.specially sa smart cars (for one or for two)parehas din

  4. Join Date
    Oct 2002
    I think safety starts with the driver itself.

  5. Join Date
    Jan 2007
    yah you are right, but the problem arises when the other driver is reckless and hits you hard on a compact car.from there, you will see the big difference between a compact and say a sedan lalo na sa SUV

  6. Join Date
    Jun 2007
    dun sa video with the smart, i don't think there's anything that could have been done given those conditions. any would-be passengers would have died because of massive deceleration forces, since the car was going so fast, not because of any design faults.

  7. Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Galing ng Smart Car! Buo pa!

  8. Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Quote Originally Posted by niky View Post
    Look at F1 cars... 350 km/h and straight into a wall... but the drivers survive due to protection from the crash structure and proper restraint... not due to the car's mass absorbing energy. Of course, it takes carbon fiber to keep them alive, but then, that's not the point...
    Actually a good part of what keeps the drivers safe is the ability of carbon fiber to absorb huge amounts of energy safely. Unlike steel or aluminum which would buckle on impact, CF disintegrates as it absorbs energy. You should see the nosecone crash tests, they pile a weight behind a simulated nosecone part, ram it into piece of metal at speed and measure the energy loss. Part of the nose disintegrates in the process, and in doing so absorbs a good deal of energy without turning into dangerous, sharp, pointy bits.

    I'd go out on a limb and say CF is probably the best material to create a car with, it's very light, very strong and does exceedingly well in a crash. Of course it doesn't help that it's also very expensive.

  9. Join Date
    Jun 2007
    --delikado compact cars lalo dito sa Pinas. Ako nung naka daihatsu charade ako, kahit anong ingat ko sa pagmamaneho, 3 or 4 na beses na ako na-sideswipe ng mga bus at truck sa Cavite. nag-uunahan o nagmamadali lagi kasi yung mga pampasaherong bus. Tapos yung truck walang paki pag nakita kasalubong o katabi niya maliit na sasakyan. Bastusan talaga.

    dapat sa pinas pag naka-compact car ka, dapat itatakbo mo lang sa mga secondary road o city, municipal roads at wag highway o expressway. Kung di maiwasan, you should equip you compact car with a bazooka o anti-tank weapon. Di kana sasagiin

  10. Join Date
    Jun 2007
    wait lang, i'm getting a bit confused... when we say "compact", we are talking about corolla/civic-sized cars, right?

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Compact cars unsafe?