Appetite for Destruction: How Cars Are Crash Tested Car News

Since 2009, we’ve gotten used to cars that get four or five stars. Not that the road to success is without the occasional pothole. Last year, the facelifted Renault Zoe hit a big zero. Explaining the impact result, Euro NCAP said: “The new Zoe offers poor protection in crashes overall, poor protection of vulnerable road users and lacks meaningful crash avoidance technology, which makes it disqualifies for all stars.”

Normally Euro NCAP wouldn’t test a facelifted model like the current Zoe, partly because it’s busy testing new ones (about 35 each year) and partly because its testing protocols change every two years and significantly updated every five years (next update is 2025), so comparisons are not helpful. He made an exception as Renault said the Zoe was radically different.

For a few years, Euro NCAP tested cars in a staggered deformable barrier, a soft nose structure that replicates the front end of another car. A mobile version, called the mobile progressive deformable barrier, replaced it in 2019. Both measure the “aggressiveness” of the test vehicle. Simply, a barrier that is too deformed after impact suggests that the structure of the test car is too stiff, causing more crash energy to be transferred to the rest of the vehicle. Alternatively, if the barrier is barely marked, the test car is absorbing too much energy. “We encourage manufacturers to make large vehicles such as SUVs less stiff,” says Avery. In 2015, the full-width barrier crash test, which had previously been retired, was reintroduced as a means of testing occupant load.

If Thatcham’s engineers are inspired to continue their work by the sight of the buckled Rover 100, they should also be inspired by Thatcham’s Honda Jazz, tested in 2017. Granted, the front of the Honda is crushed, but it’s is shock absorption at work. More importantly, its A-pillars are unscathed, while deployed side airbags hang limply from its roof. “You can see the steering wheel angle is unchanged,” says Avery. “Much of the impact energy was absorbed by the front of the car. Although this was a frontal offset crash test and not a side impact test, the The side airbag inflated, which is why removing it from the facelifted Zoe was so bad.

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This notice was published: 2022-03-13 06:01:24

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