Volvo Says It Will Have An Injury Proof Car By 2020

from the accident-avoidance dept

You’ve probably heard the old adage, “if you make something idiot-proof, they’ll make a better idiot.” Well, it appears that Volvo wants to put that theory to the test. Just as Larry Page is complaining that not enough people are working on accident-proof cars, Volvo has announced that it will offer an injury proof vehicle by 2020. There’s been a ton of work done over the past few years on accident avoidance and safety within vehicles, but the 2020 deadline is quite aggressive. Other automakers are working on similar systems, and it’s good to see good old fashioned competition driving car companies towards making consumers much safer. Quite a change from the Unsafe at Any Speed days.

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Companies: volvo

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Comments on “Volvo Says It Will Have An Injury Proof Car By 2020”

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Jake says:

Re: Only half the truth..

Actually, according to the article Volvo are looking at a collision-avoidance system that would sound an audible warning and if necessary apply the brakes if it detected an obstacle in the road ahead. It’s no substitute for concentration and situational awareness, but it’d sure as hell improve the margin for error.

JB says:

Any Engineering Student Can Do It

Reminds me of the egg drop competition in college where engineering students design lightweight containers to hold an egg without letting it crack when dropped from 50 feet up.

If you can wrap the car passengers tightly enough in the right material and secure them to an anchor point you can prevent them from getting hurt, but it won’t be a very comfortable ride.

josh says:

a long time ago, we decided that advertising and politics would become one.

say whatever sounds good, regardless of action

actions are truly insignificant at this point, and companies, like politics, do whatever they can to sell a products and themselves.

all advertising is nowadays is saying what sounds good…whether what is said has a single shred of relation to what the product or service provides is absolutely irrelevant.

the saddest part, is that anyone out there actually believes that such statements are indicative of what is possible, or even rational.

sure, let’s make an accident-proof car…can’t believe we didn’t think of this earlier…it’s so obvious.

another mike says:

scarier still

What happens when you learned to drive in one of these smarter-than-the-driver cars and you borrow your luddite friend’s late model no-power-anything stick shift clunker? “Well, I thought it would warn me before I wedged it under the back of that semi.”
This is happening even now. Couple of punks tried to steal my car, realized they didn’t know how to drive a stick, and just trashed it and stole the radio. They left it on the front seat when they realized it wasn’t a radio, it was an 8-track player.

Gutsy One says:

Re: And this is possible how?

So GM will drive Volvo into bankruptcy, or do you mean GM will drive Volvos on their way to bankruptcy. If GM owned Volvo then your comment would reflect that you have a clue but that is not the case. Ford owns Volvo which might make it hard for GM to drive them to bankruptcy. Even if Ford goes bankrupt Volvo automotive I guarantee lives on. The Volvo Group which is way bigger than Ford could ever dream to be will not be allow it to die just for namesake. Volvo Group is one of the most powerful companies in Europe easy. Ford only owns the automotive line-up. Plus most their sales are outside the US so they will be bought and kept alive and who knows maybe the sale will allow the US to have one auto manufacturer left.

Matt says:

even moreso, new problems - the greatest offense is the greatest defense

Cars still test at like 30MPH impacts, and fail pretty badly at that. Highway safety testing is at far lower speeds than impacts occur on highways….try running tests on survival impact at 60 MPH and the rates are like 0% even on a stationary object. Cars won’t even make this by 2050 if we’re still using them by them.

There isn’t a true balance as of yet, and I doubt there ever will be, because:

the more resilient a car is, the more likely to kill a pedestrian upon impact
the less resilient (and more flexible, features like engines that go downward in a collision), the more likely to kill a driver and/or person inside the car upon impact.

The more insulation you put inside a vehicle, the more risk of suffocation and flammability. Conversely, the less insulation you put inside a vehicle, the less cushion and higher risk for internal injury.

The safer a car is to the driver, the more dangerous it can potentially be to those around them, and vice versa.

Pedestrian vs car, you can only protect from one or the other. When you have flexible materials, high speed impacts = screwed.

dorpass says:

Re: even moreso, new problems - the greatest offense is the greatest defense

Cars fail tests at 30 mph? Survival rate at 60 mph is 0%? What country are you in, India? Modern cars do quite a bit better that your claims and a stroll past many of the highway collisions you can find on our roads can easily prove that.

kureshii says:

It’s fine to make an injury-proof car… but is a car that’s injury-proof only for the driver really what we need?

So I guess we’ll just screw the pedestrians and other unwitting victims of crashes.

I say what we need is a car that won’t move if the driver is drunk. That should be easy enough to engineer. Once we get past that (or at the same time) we can start looking at similar dangers – excessive speeding, aggressive driving, needless tailgating…

Those aren’t the only factors causing accidents of course, but why put the focus on those when we haven’t even got the basics right? As for traffic light timings, that’s not something the auto industry can do much about on its own.

Anonymous Coward says:

The idea of an injury-proof car, while commendable, is laughable at best. Yes, it is possible to do much more in the area of safety than is currently being done. However, to guarantee that a car is 100% injury-free in an accident is simply impossible, at least without some stipulations. For example, I challenge any car manufacturer to come out with a PRACTICAL car that is invulnerable to being hit by a train, or even a large semi truck. Also, unless you strap a person’s head in place, which in itself is a huge safety problem, you’re always going to have whiplash problems from high-speed crashes. It would be good to define “injury” in your guarantee.

The bottom line is that there can only be so much safety built into a vehicle. What really needs to be promoted is safe drivers and driving habits. I would much rather see people use their turn signals than worry about how many airbags are in my car (which, btw, have been known to cause injuries themselves). The focus should be on preventing accidents, not preventing injuries resulting from accidents. That’s not to say that vehicle safety isn’t important. I’m just saying that the primary focus isn’t in the right place here.

Jones says:


1st paragraph:

quote – “Volvo wants to give people the same sense of invincibility by producing a virtually injury-proof car by 2020” – end quote

key word: VIRTUALLY

what it means… They will have a car sometime near 2020 that just might protect the passengers from injury……Maybe, there may be exceptions.

Like I have a foolproof plan that will VIRTUALLY guarantee I win the lotto by 2020…

The plan is I’l buy lotto tickets. I will probably win, maybe, there may be exceptions.

manny says:

come on guys

I applaud them on the effort… Truly it is much easier to take the negative than the positive; seeing the numbers of commenters that take the easy route… It will be a challence but there will be colleteral benefits that will come from the research… I wonder if any of you would give up the little luxuries that we all take for granted that were little (side benefits of the space program) im including cell phones but it is iffy on the benefit aspect…

Justin C says:

Highway Collisions

The majority of Highway collisions occur at much slower than 60 MPH. The actual speed of the vehicles doesn’t matter, it’s all about the difference in speed. In other words, it would be much worse to hit a tree at 40 miles per hour than run into someone at 80 if they’re going 70. One is essentially a 10 MPH collision, while the other isn’t, plus you generally have plenty of area for the force to dissipate in a highway collision. You really want to avoid three things, a head on collision, a t-bone collision, or a collision with an immovable stationary object.

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