By on September 16, 2009

This is a sick way for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) to “celebrate” its 50th anniversary, but we do love us some crash test video. Apparently, “the driver of the 1959 Chevrolet Bel Air would have been killed instantly while the 2009 Chevrolet Malibu’s driver would walk away with a minor knee injury.” As someone who suffers with that affliction (head fake Bob), I’d ask the IIHS to define “minor” and will henceforth avoid speeding to my local car show in a 1959 Bel Air. Meanwhile, note to the IIHS: in fifty years you couldn’t have added sound? Gary Numan’s Cars, anyway. [Thanks to DC Car Examiner for the link.]

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

70 Comments on “IIHS: 2009 Chevy Malibu vs. 1959 Chevy Bel Air (Just Because They Can)...”


  • avatar
    vww12

    Was the Bel Air dummy wearing a seat belt?

    For, if it wasn’t, it is bloody obvious a driver of a Bel Air would die in such an accident.

  • avatar
    mehow

    so sad . . . this really wasn’t necessary. Celebration my ass. The IIHS are a bunch of monsters.

  • avatar
    shaker

    Was there an engine in that Bel Air?

    Curious… but entertaining.

  • avatar
    pgreenberg

    Celebrating 50 years of progress …..and proving IIHS to be the car-haters we always suspected they were. A 1959, with the classic rear bat eye brake lights destroyed! Horrible.

  • avatar
    Juniper

    That sucked, but at least they destroyed a 4 dr.
    With all this progress, when do my insurance rates go down?

  • avatar
    findude

    Seat belts may have been optional on a 1959 Bel Air, but not standard. More interesting, if also more tragic, would have been to pit the Bel Air against a 1959 Volvo. That Volvo had seat belts and a crumple zone designed into it.

    Apart from, maybe, the heads-up infrared display, I’m having a hard time remembering when GM was a leader in safety.

  • avatar
    jpcavanaugh

    IIRC, those 59-60 GM cars with the X frames were always horrible in collisions. As much as I would hate to lose the cars, I would love to see that same crash tried with a Ford or Plymouth with a ladder frame. While they would still fare poorly compared to a 2009 model that is designed to do well in a crash, I bet they would do significantly better than that Chevy.

  • avatar
    BuzzDog

    findude: Apart from, maybe, the heads-up infrared display, I’m having a hard time remembering when GM was a leader in safety.

    GM was actually the first to offer airbags, albeit as optional equipment, in the early 1970s.

    • 0 avatar

      The 1947-1948 Tucker was the first. It had airbags, power breaks, Disk break on all four wheels, safety glass, padded dash,seat belts, and a center headlight that turned with the wheels.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1948_Tucker_Sedan
      http://www.laubly.com/1948tucker.htm

  • avatar
    rpol35

    I am not surprised that the Malibu fared better but I am surprised by how much better. Good show for modern auto safety.

    It is a disgrace however to destroy a 50 year old car in such a fashion.

  • avatar
    AICfan

    It is a disgrace however to destroy a 50 year old car in such a fashion.

    We’re talking about a mass produced, assembly line assembled car that thousands were made and you can find a dozen at any sizeable nostalgia gathering.

    It’s not like they destroyed anything special, here.

  • avatar
    rpol35

    “We’re talking about a mass produced, assembly line assembled car that thousands were made and you can find a dozen at any sizeable nostalgia gathering.

    It’s not like they destroyed anything special, here.”

    I completely disagree, it’s an antique, like it or not, mass produced or not, and shouldn’t be destroyed to simply make a point.

  • avatar
    sandmed

    Part of the cash for clunkers program

  • avatar
    taxman100

    Did you see the cloud of rust fly from the Bel Air?

    I’m betting it was sitting in a junkyard somewhere, and they painted it to make it look pretty, but the frame was swiss cheese.

    I don’t trust the IIHS – their job is to minimize risk for automobile insurance companies, and that is it.

  • avatar
    friedclams

    Call me a sucker if you want, but I find this video impressive. I briefly owned a 1960 Chevy similar to this and the sheet metal was really thick on that enormous car. It is a telling reminder of how mass does not equal structural integrity, which is contrary to most people’s gut instinct.

    Also, lucky for the 2009 Malibu that the other car’s massive hood sailed harmlessly above it! That would be a decapitation hazard right there.

  • avatar
    Rod Panhard

    A video like that is designed to be viral. Hence, no sound, which makes for a smaller file.

    Y’all been punk’d.

  • avatar
    Andy D

    A display as significant as Lutz taking on all comers to race the CTS. 59s were rust buckets, most were long gone within a decade of service up here in MA. I saw a 60 at Limerock, first one seen in yrs.

  • avatar

    I worked as a personal injury attorney before taking up traffic law full time.

    We cleaned out a deceased attorney’s files a few years back. He had all of the 50-60′s whiplash cases “back in the day”.

    Those car accident cases were not a scam. People really did get hurt in what we consider today minor incidents. (I’m also not factoring in less seat belt use or bias ply tires)

    Those old cars were really nasty compared to today. Common were injuries against metal dashboards. Interiors designed only for style were not really helpful in a crash.

    Computers to evaluate crush zones were not yet common.

    Today, you can have a fender bender at 30 mph or even hit a divider on a highway at 60 mph. The car will be a “total” but you have a much, much greater chance of walking away than before.

    Having said all that, I’m sure the IIHS chose a car which was a very crappy example of crashability. IIHS studies are usually written like the Red Queen says: Sentence First, Verdict After !

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    And in related what-if news, NASA has announced that the Starship Enterprise would definitely waste the Death Star.

  • avatar
    SkiD666

    Makes you glad they don’t make ‘em like they used to.

    BTW, what would the crash sound like in super slow motion…
    Exactly.

  • avatar
    confused1096

    Nothing like a snuff film before I’ve even finished my coffee. (shudder…)

  • avatar
    geeber

    taxman100: I’m betting it was sitting in a junkyard somewhere, and they painted it to make it look pretty, but the frame was swiss cheese.

    Krause Publications published a book that consists entirely of photographs or car accidents during from the early 1950s to the late 1970s. The wrecked cars – most of which were nearly new at the time – don’t look much better than the 1959 Chevrolet does after this crash. Plus, GM’s X-frame wasn’t noted for its crashworthiness.

  • avatar
    Mekkon

    +1 on the huge rust cloud. I’d agree that it looks as though it was pulled from a dormant state in the northeast well after the frame had turned to oxygen… And I’m not convinced that there’s an engine in there either… Some paint and bondo make it look the part for this ad.

    That said – are we meant to be surprised that a 2009 model is safer than a 1959?

  • avatar
    skor

    “Apart from, maybe, the heads-up infrared display, I’m having a hard time remembering when GM was a leader in safety.”

    Back in the 1950′s GM actively opposed selling cars based on safety features. GM management was of the belief that any mention of driving hazards was blasphemy. During the mid-1950′s Ford heavily advertised its “Lifeguard” safety option package — seat belts, padded dash and some other bits. GM responded by going nuts and running ads depicting wrecked Fords, to “prove” that Fords were not any safer than GM products.

    GM’s corporate criminality goes back decades.

  • avatar
    FloorIt

    The windshield glass on the Bel Air shatters everywhere, where the Malibu windshield remains intact.
    The engine I think is there. There is lots of engine compartment room, esp. if a 6 cylinder and the sheetmetal folds up against the engine as the engine is torn from motor mounts.
    Naders Unsafe At Any speed mentions that designing a crumple zone car was possible back then in 50′s but ignored.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    speedlaw :
    September 16th, 2009 at 9:25 am

    Having said all that, I’m sure the IIHS chose a car which was a very crappy example of crashability.

    I think that would encompass just about every car made back then, frankly.

  • avatar

    taxman100 :Did you see the cloud of rust fly from the Bel Air?

    I don’t trust the IIHS – their job is to minimize risk for automobile insurance companies, and that is it.

    You nailed it on the rust. And I trust the IIHS even less now…after this pointless act of horn-tooting. We all know that rusty metal has none of the malleable properties of the original stuff, right?

    The ’59 Chevy is a deathtrap by today’s standards, but not because of IIHS’s obviously flawed testing. I think the Malibu would be in more hurt if the ’59 wasn’t a rust bucket.

  • avatar
    PartsUnknown

    Not sure I agree on the rust cloud theory. Look at the video – the ’59 emits a brownish cloud, while the ’09 emits a silver cloud, both colors corresponding to the color of each car. Could have something to do with the paint perhaps.

  • avatar

    That Chevy was obviously a ringer. No engine, no transmission, and a special nature-modified lightweight panel substance known scientifically as “FeO” aka “The Carbon Fiber of the Fifties.” We call it by its more common name: Rust.

    –chuck

  • avatar
    fincar1

    The IIHS is on the east coast. I doubt very much that they spent what they would have had to to obtain a rust-free 1959 Chevy for this video. They found a cheap one, which practically by definition would be a rust bucket, and prettied it up for the video. They are part and parcel of the chickensh_t lawyer division of the mainstream media, and not to be trusted.

  • avatar

    I’ve put in a call to the IIHS re: the soundness (soundosity?) of the Bel Air in question.

  • avatar
    Buick61

    The full speed (with sound) video can be found on this page:

    http://abcnews.go.com/Travel/technology-reduces-severity-car-crashes-fatalities-injuries/story?id=8523234

    I agree with the others, I think this was a drive-train free rusty car of questionable structural integrity.

    What they should have done is completely restore the car to factory tolerances using new metal in the structural areas. (IIHS has the money to do it)

    Fifty years of freeze/thaw cycles, oxidation, road stresses, and so forth would absolutely weaken a car’s structure.

    Further, it’s sad that a mass-produced, disposable car that managed to beat the odds and survive for a half-century met such a violent, unnecessary death. OF COURSE it would do worse in a crash against a new car of similar weight (they’re only off by a couple hundred pounds, and I’m sure the lack of engine brought the ’59s weight to below the ’09s). While dramatic, this was just brutal to watch.

  • avatar
    GeeDashOff

    I would love working at the IIHS. I’m sure their conversations go something like this:
    “Hey Bob, what are we destroying today?”
    “Well, as soon as I finish this here coffee and donut we have a 1959 Bel Air we’re crashing into a new Malibu”

    What a sweet job.

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    I dont trust the IIHS – their job is to minimize risk for automobile insurance companies, and that is it.

    Yes, and the biggest source of those claims is medical and life-insurance payouts. The insurance industry has a vested financial interest in making sure we’re all driving ultra-safe transport pods. In this case, the profit motive really does work as intended. This is why I would take the IIHS’ verdict over the NHTSA’s theoretically-compromised-by-the-automaker’s-lobbyists tests eight days a week. I don’t trust them in the sense that I think they’re morally upstanding citizens, but I trust their judgment for the same reason I’d trust a convicted bank robber’s opinion of a bank’s security system over that of the FDIC’s. The bank robber owes nothing to the bank, just like the IIHS owes nothing to the automakers while the NHTSA does.

    This is rather like the health insurance industry, except that the automobile insurers can’t just let you die because that would cost even more money, so they lack that convenient “out”.

  • avatar
    HankScorpio

    @vww12

    Was the Bel Air dummy wearing a seat belt?

    For, if it wasnt, it is bloody obvious a driver of a Bel Air would die in such an accident.

    I don’t think it would have mattered if the dummy was wearing a seatbelt. It appears that the dummy was pinned in by the crushing sheetmetal almost immediately. The seatbelt is effective mainly because it prevents ejection (and the corresponding injuries that happen when you are flying through the air at an accident scene) and second because it reduces deceleration injuries. In this car it would probably be the javelin-esque steering column that took out the driver.

  • avatar
    enicideme

    I think it would be interesting to see two identical new Malibus crash into each other. Would the Malibu driver still walk away with only a knee injury, or would he be much more injured?

  • avatar
    johnthacker

    Yes, and the biggest source of those claims is medical and life-insurance payouts. The insurance industry has a vested financial interest in making sure were all driving ultra-safe transport pods.

    Right. I mean, I don’t like that the IIHS is going to totally ignore such things as “driving fun” in their ratings, and not even acknowledge that tradeoffs between speed and safety or anything and safety might be worth making, but I absolutely trust them on trying to make cars ridiculously safe.

  • avatar
    moedaman

    I too doubt that they used anything other than a rust bucket for the 59 Chevy. But really, unless a car that old has been restored, they’re all rust buckets. But that car wasn’t designed with safety in mind, so I believe the end results are correct.

    The one thing that stuns me is the fact that the ’09 Malibu weighs as much as a ’59 full size vehicle. There just has to be a way to make a car lighter without sacrificing safety and costing a fortune to impliment, isn’t there?

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    The one thing that stuns me is the fact that the ‘09 Malibu weighs as much as a ‘59 full size vehicle. There just has to be a way to make a car lighter without sacrificing safety and costing a fortune to impliment, isn’t there?

    Nope. Big, safe, cheap. Pick two.

    That said, there are ways you can get the mass down: the Malibu’s four-cyl and six-speed certainly are more efficient. Aerodynamics are worlds better on the ‘Bu. Engine management can make a big difference. And there’s far more useful space in the Malibu versus the Bel-Air. Most of this stuff was already done, though.

    I would have liked to see the high-scoring lightweight car (say, a Civic) rammed into a car like this. It’d be an interesting test of the mass-wins theory.

  • avatar
    ohsnapback

    The next time an older relative tells me “they don’t make ‘em like they used to,” my reply will be a simple “damn straight.”

  • avatar
    geeber

    Buick61: What they should have done is completely restore the car to factory tolerances using new metal in the structural areas. (IIHS has the money to do it)

    True, but then who wants to wreck it?

    Sajeev Mehta: The ‘59 Chevy is a deathtrap by today’s standards, but not because of IIHS’s obviously flawed testing. I think the Malibu would be in more hurt if the ‘59 wasn’t a rust bucket.

    On youtube, someone posted a video of early 1960s full-size Dodges and Plymouths being used in crash tests by a university when they were new, or fairly new. The results were equally gruesome. The worst was the 1960 Plymouth Savoy hit on the driver’s side by another 1960s full-size Mopar. The passenger-side front door of the Savoy popped open and the entire front bench seat flew out the door.

    skor: GM responded by going nuts and running ads depicting wrecked Fords, to “prove” that Fords were not any safer than GM products.

    Do you have a link to those ads? I’ve never seen any of this type, and there are lots of vendors at the big Carlisle and Hershey swap meets who specialize in ads for cars and automotive products from the 1950s and 1960s.

    What I had read is that GM brass was upset about Ford’s ad campaign – the thought was that implying safety had anything to do with automobiles would hurt everybody’s sales – but what killed the Ford campaign was that Chevy whipped Ford in the sales race for 1956.

    In addition to being the first to install air bags on a production car, GM also developed the collapsible steering column, which was a major safety advance.

  • avatar
    moedaman

    Nope. Big, safe, cheap. Pick two.

    OK , I was just wondering if automakers were just taking the easiest way out since US standards are different than the rest of the worlds.

  • avatar
    folkdancer

    Another problem with those old cars – they had wrap around windshields. People who hit the inside of the windshields got their skulls badly out of alignment and bone surgeons had a terrible time trying to figure out what shape the skull was originally.

  • avatar
    StevenJJ

    Interesting vid.

    Talk of a rigged car is 100% speculation – the burden of proof is on you if you want to make such accusations.

  • avatar
    folkdancer

    In the 50s GM whined about making their cars safer.
    In the 60s GM whined about making their cars less polluting.
    In the 70s GM whined about making their cars more efficient.

    Other auto companies (European and Japanese) didn’t whine they just met the challenges and took GM’s market share.

  • avatar
    Ingvar

    I really think it is as sound as can be, for a fifty year old car. There wouldn’t be much point if it was just a rolling cloud of rust dust, the whole point of it is to have the car structurally intact.

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    OK , I was just wondering if automakers were just taking the easiest way out since US standards are different than the rest of the worlds.

    The core platforms and basic safety measures aren’t all that different, and the differences aren’t about core safety as much as things like pedestrian-impact standards (in Europe) or bumper-bash resiliency (int he US).

    Then you get cars like the Jetta, which weigh as much as the Malibu, despite being a) smaller by a longshot and b) European.

  • avatar

    PartsUnknown : Not sure I agree on the rust cloud theory. Look at the video – the ‘59 emits a brownish cloud, while the ‘09 emits a silver cloud, both colors corresponding to the color of each car. Could have something to do with the paint perhaps.

    That silver cloud is probably the airbag gas (white) leaving the car. I seriously doubt any of the stuff you see near the ground came from the Malibu.

    Just look at all the brown junk on the floor after the ’59 met its doom. (at 0:59) That’s not paint, that’s a lot of dirt and of RUST.

  • avatar

    I actually wanted to see something like this before. Now I have I am throughly entertained but am crying a little bit on the inside.

  • avatar
    brandloyalty

    “I think it would be interesting to see two identical new Malibus crash into each other. Would the Malibu driver still walk away with only a knee injury, or would he be much more injured?”

    All else being equal, the softer the thing you run into, the lower the crash forces will be. Running into another Malibu, the other Malibu’s crush zone would soften the crash for both cars, and both drivers would suffer less injury than the Malibu driver in the Malibu/Bel Air crash.

  • avatar
    DweezilSFV

    And to think millions of people drove billions of miles in those “death traps” and lived to tell the tale….

    How did we all ever survive before the IIHS ?

  • avatar
    John Holt

    That was a whole lotta rust and debris that went flying.

    The ‘Bu was in pretty good shape for such a massive hit. Anybody know how much that vintage Bel Air weighs?

  • avatar
    jmo

    How did we all ever survive before the IIHS ?

    Looking at it on a per 100 millon miles traveled basis, if cars were as unsafe now as they were then we’d be talking about between 200,000 and 250,000 highway fatalities a year.

  • avatar
    ultramatic

    jmo, took the words out of my mouth.

    I wonder how cars (or any consumer product, for that matter) become safer over time, if not through the efforts of people like Ralph Nader and those “chickenshit lawyers” and consumer advocates. Sure, you may not like lawyers or insurance companies for abstract or specific reasons, but they do serve a purpose, and sometimes their interests align with our own.

    IIHS should be applauded for highlighting the advancements in vehicle safety over the past 50 years. God knows GM wouldn’t have done it on their own accord.

  • avatar
    MadHungarian

    According to the ABC story, that was a 40 mph headon collision — i.e. a closing speed of 80 MPH. We didn’t have to destroy a collectible car to show that was not survivable in most of the cars ever made.

    I do wonder what a similar collision between two 1959 Chevys would look like. Does the design of the 2009 car effectively transfer a disproportionate share of the crash forces to the other vehicle? If so, maybe for the ’59 Chevy it was like a 100 or 120 mph collision.

    Interesting that IIHS says the Malibu driver would have suffered a knee injury. My daily driver is a 2005 Town Car which gets very high crash safety rankings. I have noticed that due to the low placement of the HUGE steering column, my right knee is only about an inch or two away from the column when I am braking. In my previous Town Car (1992) and most other large cars I have owned, there was much more clearance between the instrument panel and column and me. I know that even in a minor collision I am likely to hit my right knee (which has alreasdy had surgery) HARD against that column and I don’t understand why this is good or safe design.

  • avatar
    Potemkin

    IIHS film aside I had a close encounter with a 60′s Beaumont in my 1985 Pontiac 6000. The chrome bumpered Beaumont rear ended my standing still 6000 at about 50 mph. The result was the Beaumont totally destroyed the back of my 6000 and it had to be put on a flat bed to go to the shop. Insurance would have written off my Pontiac but because it was new and they didn’t want to pay so they put on a full rear clip. On the other hand the fire department guys pulled the Beaumonts right front fender away from the wheel and the guy drove it home. Crush zones be dammed, give me a full frame and steel bumpers.

  • avatar
    golden2husky

    I wonder how cars (or any consumer product, for that matter) become safer over time, if not through the efforts of people like Ralph Nader and those “chickenshit lawyers” and consumer advocates. Sure, you may not like lawyers or insurance companies for abstract or specific reasons, but they do serve a purpose, and sometimes their interests align with our own.

    Well said. Industry was in no way going to improve the safety of vehicles unless it was rammed down their throats. Same for emissions and mileage. Once regulations “prime the pump” the consumer tends to demand the standard.

    Can’t say that I share much enthusiasm for the insurance industry though. They do their best not to pay claims and create BS statistical models like “insurance scores” to charge higher rates for those who have less than stellar credit.

    It killed me to see a car like that destroyed, but the images are quite telling…

  • avatar
    davey49

    “And to think millions of people drove billions of miles in those “death traps” and lived to tell the tale….”

    A lot of people died too, hence the safety advances.

  • avatar
    Steven Lang

    Actually, I’ll have to disagree a bit…

    GM was instrumental in putting ABS and traction control in cheap subcompacts when the Saturn came out. Beforehand these features were non-existent in that segment.

  • avatar
    210delray

    Steven:

    And then came Lutz and made those standard features optional (around 2002-03). He did the same with side airbags in the higher priced cars.

  • avatar
    Kevin Kluttz

    findude:
    Yes, GM has been a leader in safety…when they were on strike and NOT slopping together their pieces of shit!!!

  • avatar
    Kevin Kluttz

    If that Cadillac only weighed 3800, we must be talking around 3000 for the Chevy…I’ve read that the 1957 Belair weighed in around that.

  • avatar
    Kevin Kluttz

    “GM wouldn’t have done it on its own Accord…”
    Damn, I’m glad GM didn’t build MY Accord.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    And to think millions of people drove billions of miles in those “death traps” and lived to tell the tale

    There were more vehicle fatalities in 1959 than in 2008, even though we drove more than 4 times as much in 2008.

    If we had had 1959′s fatality rate per mile during 2008, there would have been more than 138,000 fatalities during 2008, instead of the 34,000 that we actually had. That would have meant about 104,000 additional deaths. We’d be killing off enough people to populate Savannah, Georgia, every single year.

    We’re a lot better off today, thanks to improved vehicle and highway design. Cars are easier to replace than people.

  • avatar
    joeaverage

    So the back seat is STILL the safer place to be even in a vintage car. Really, I would have taken their word for it – I knew the newer car would win.

    Sold several vintage vehicles over the years that were pretty scary if you knew anything about engineering a car. Still own a couple too.

    Had a ’49 Chevy truck that I sold soon after a friend told me that early in his engineering career he used to crash test cars and trucks in Michigan. A hard rear ender could shove the bed forward, push the cab hard, pinch the gas tank behind the seat inside the cab, and the top weld lets go spraying the interior with gasoline. It was time to sell the truck, save it for parades, or re-engineer the fuel system. Luckily an opportunity to buy a nicer house presented itself and I sold the truck.

    Also have a ’65 Beetle. After looking at several Beetles that had hard front end collisions – I know it is still safer than a motorcycle – just… I’ll keep that car. I’ll also pick when and where I drive it.

    Have a late 70s VW Westfalia camper. Having seen several crash tests and wreck pictures on the ‘net I’m confident that I’m reasonably safe as long as I rear-end cars in front of me and don’t have a head-on crash. The frame on the front of those vans is tough but there isn’t enough above the frame to satisfy me however all the dash and HVAC ducts are steel and contribute to the vehicle’s frontal strength.

    One thing is for sure – I refuse to join the arms race of the road – always buying the biggest vehicle so the other guy pays the price in a crash.

    Instead I choose to know how to handle my vehicle well – I do spend time exploring it’s limits – and I drive very defensively and carefully – even in a modern car. I’ll always own vintage vehicles but I’ll choose when and where I drive them for sure.

    I hate that an old car gave it’s “life” for this video but I’d like to also think that the folks who thought the old cars were safer because of their bulk will give some more thoughts to their opinions after seeing this video.

    I truly hope the previous owner of this car DOESN’T see the crash video. I know each time I’ve sold a car I’ve spent alot of time driving and taking care of I’m a little sad and hopeful that the next owner is as good to it. Yeah, it’s an inanimate object but…

    Yes, I’d like to see an old car vs an old car in their offset crashes. Don’t crash GOOD cars though please!!! Even a well done computer sim would be satisfactory in my opinion.

  • avatar
    SCClockDr

    I wonder if there was an engine in the Malibu?

  • avatar
    Dick

    I’ve watched this multiple times now and have to ask, was the ’59 clipped? Because if it was… All bets are off.

  • avatar
    thunder1road

    The old cars had a solid shaft running from the steering
    wheel straight down to the steering gear. In a front impact
    the shaft would often be pushed right into the chest of
    the driver – like a spear.
    I would have liked the video better if they had smashed
    a Suburban into a couple of Hyundai’s.

  • avatar
    philr

    I had two front end collisions with an X frame car in the past (a 1967 Buick Riviera). The front clip sheetmetal suffered but the frame remained intact and the driver too! In the first collision, the driver of the other car told me he felt it was a severe impact, I didn’t (but there was 10,000$ of damage on my car!). My car was repaired both times and I still drive it today!

    And I also have a 1975 Buick Electra equipped with driver and passenger airbags. I think I’d be safer in a font end collision in my Electra than in a 2009 Malibu! The airbags in the seventies GM cars were more advanced than those of the nineties. The passenger airbag even has a knee cushion and it’s so large that it protects the two front passengers. It also has two stage deployment and the driver’s side of the dashboards of ’70s GM cars with airbags were also padded to act as a knee restraint.

    Recently, I had an accident at low speed with a newer truck and I was almost killed…


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Subscribe without commenting

Recent Comments

  • Re: New York 2014: Outtakes Part 2 – Expand Your Horizons

    Vega - So you know what car is being talked about. There is a huge difference between a 1983 Mercedes 230E (W123) and a 1986 Mercedes 230E...
  • Re: New York 2014: Outtakes Part 2 – Expand Your Horizons

    Vega - It all started in 1980 when BMW called a turbocharged version of the e23 745i, despite the fact it only had a 3.2l engine.
  • Re: Town And Country Update: Road Trip

    nrd515 - A friend of mine is one of those guys who first got married out of high school and had a coupe of kids almost immediately. His mom and her husband live in...
  • Re: Saturation Dive: The GM 8L90 transmission

    SC5door - Until everything else fails around the car. You mention Ultradrive as a jab at Chrysler, yet totally blow off ignition switches, intake gaskets,...
  • Re: New York 2014: Outtakes Part 2 – Expand Your Horizons

    CRConrad - @Chris FOM: “No, the _28 nomenclature was a detuned 3L engine.” Maybe in America, maybe recently elsewhere too. But yes,...
  • Re: Ur-Turn: Need A Lyft?

    tekdemon - The thing is that you get to deduct a pretty hefty deduction on your taxes though so can still work out for you if you drive a lot of miles. I wouldn’t drive...
  • Re: Ur-Turn: Need A Lyft?

    danio3834 - Looking at their website, I’m having trouble figuring out what the exact fees/donations are and what a driver can typically expect to earn. More seating would...
  • Re: Ur-Turn: Need A Lyft?

    tekdemon - Uber drivers definitely double dip, my friend’s gotten a black car the last couple times he used X, and I’ve gotten a huge Denali SUV when I used black (rather...
  • Re: QOTD: The Economics Of Ownership

    danio3834 - The cranks are prescribing as much DIY as feasible for poor people where the economics of doing this does the most to make them less poor. DIYing repairs on an...
  • Re: Ur-Turn: Need A Lyft?

    CRConrad - @7402: “I’ll wait for the first huge civil suit to meander through the appeals system before putting my own car out there.” So you plan on perhaps signing up...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Authors

  • Brendan McAleer, Canada
  • Marcelo De Vasconcellos, Brazil
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • J & J Sutherland, Canada
  • Tycho de Feyter, China
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Faisal Ali Khan, India