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IIHS Front Small Overlap test-some not-so-nice results for this forum!

Discussion in 'Safety First!' started by acechip, Feb 13, 2015.

  1. acechip

    acechip Superiore

    This is about the Front Small overlap test- a phenomenon that is extremely relevant to the Indian driving scenario, what with obstacles jutting out along roads, around corners , etc.

    Here is a link to the technical details:

    And here are some results:

    2014 Toyota RAV-4 - GOOD!

    2015 Kia Soul- GOOD!

    2014 - Mini Cooper Countryman- GOOD!

    2014- Mazda CX-5- GOOD!

    And here is the shocker
    2014 Fiat 500L- POOR !
    dadasaheb and limraj like this.
  2. nibedk

    nibedk Regolare

    Grande Punto 1.3 90 HP
    From these videos I am not sure what is the difference. I watched 3 and the results were almost similar. With no commentary I could not make out the difference. Can the experts explain?
  3. acechip

    acechip Superiore

    Compare the result of Mazda and Fiat, especially from inside. The Fiat A-pillars have crumpled spectacularly.

    The basic issue is that car crumple zones are designed to protect occupants in case of full front or full side impacts, but during normal driving, there may not always a direct collision, but partial surface contact due to some emergency manuever, like swerving to avoid direct impact. Under those circumstances, the car's structure may not be able to protect the driver particularly. Also watch other videos on Y-tube where sedans have done better. Incidentally, cars like Audi A4 fail the test spectacularly, while the much less vaunted Hyundai Genesis passes.
    Raj_pol likes this.
  4. selwyn.a

    selwyn.a Amatore

    Grande Punto 1.3 90 HP
    I dont imagine too many folks have a 500L on this forum ? :)
  5. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr
    One can always define a new test where this or that car fails, or they all do. Each test has particular parameters and assumptions, change them even slightly and you can go from a 5 star safety rating to a big fat zero. That is just part of the commercial 'safety game' that manufacturers and insurance folks are playing with the public in developed markets, leading to evermore expensive cars that do not necessarily add to the probabalistic reduction in fatalities being worth it.

    This game is now being played in India, even though 90% of fatalities are of pedestrians, cyclists, 2-wheeler riders, and even though there are next to no studies of what type of accidents tend to lead to what degree of damage to which car model in what circumstances.

    We in India will at this rate get abs, airbagged, 4/5 star ncap/iihs rated cars at a lakh or three more than some of the already bloated prices of bestsellers like the Duster, the City, the Swift, the Verna, the i20 elite etc LONG BEFORE we get cars that have their basics of build, steering, braking, tyres, suspension and chassis architecture sorted out! Not that we'll see any improvement in road safety statistics either.

    These cars are, safety and otherwise, engineering rubbish for the prices they command. The day they stop being so I'll happily buy one, leaving the Fiat (or Ford) fold. Till then Fiat-s/Fords/maybe Tata/maybe VW are the only options here, I am afraid, in 'safety for car and occupants' terms.
  6. adisrini1103

    adisrini1103 Amatore

    Linea 1.3
    well, the 500L crumpled may be because of the thin and separated glass A-pillar.. That is bad, Definitely bad, coz in this case even if you have 20 aribags, the passenger will still be dead.

    But it will survive in India because as per MS head, for India that's enough.
    Swift, just not in overlap test, in every test will crumple like pappad. why will people buy MS swift, coz Indians like pappad .
  7. acechip

    acechip Superiore

    Ok, so let us be specific here. The European Swift has scored 5 stars in the NCAP (not small overlap) test. The Indian version may have structural differences with that version.

    @prabhjot sounds dismissive of the NCAP test program, but in the absence of a better scientific method, that is the one measure of safety standards, I am afraid. Because it doesnt believe in prayers, lemon-chillies, bull bars and "horn OK please" business.
  8. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr

    To see, and examine, the build of the UK Swift relative to the Indian one is to stunned at the degree of cost-cutting Maruti has felt free to inflict on the car. I didn't drive one, though am dead sure they've diluted things like braking too (they certainly have tyre size and spec) for India.

    Maruti has margins of 11-12% on each Swift, I gather from the financial press, luxury-marque margins for a tin-can of a car.

    NCAP or any other tests are fine, just that I personally don't subscribe to the idea that tinny cars with dodgy brakes, skinny tyres, and sub-par steering and suspension systems become any safer in the real world just by having 'safety features'.

    Moreover, it is really also about the (cost of) repair-ability of the car and not just the safety of occupants. A Euro-tough (structure and sheetmetal etc) car like the Punto/Linea/Ford Fiesta is so much safer as well as cheaper to repair. The flimsier the build toughness of sheetmetal and bumpers and windshield glass etc the more exorbitant the repair bill (of a Honda, Hyundai or Suzuki, even a Nissan or a Duster).
  9. jumu

    jumu Superiore

    I am sure this test would have sent the Fiat engineers rush back to the drawing board.


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