Europe has strict legislation in place to ensure that its pedestrians are safe, particularly when they’re hit by cars. (Not a bad thing, I’d say, U.S. auto regulators.). Volvo’s doing its best to adhere to these regulations with their new V40 edition.
The new model has Pedestrian Detection technology installed to prevent hitting someone in the first place. There are other crazy excelled safety features on the V40 that will be the base safety platform for more Volvo models, including the C30, S40 and V50. But the coolest new safety feature is the pedestrian air bag. Yeah, that’s right…an air bag that catches you like a pillow on the car’s exterior!
(Other manufacturers have tried to come up with a solution; their ideas are underwhelming and confusing. How underwhelming? A hood that slightly crumples under the weight of person underwhelming. How bizarre? Using small pyrotechnic igniters to raise the hood after an impact to cushion the blow. Uhm…what?)
Volvo’s pedestrian airbag is wildly different; once the sensors detect an imminent impact, the section of the hood closest to the windshield pops up slightly, releasing a U-shaped airbag from underneath that forms a car pillow around the base and sides of the windshield and A-pillars.
This thing is not too shabby of an idea. Plus it might usher in a new extreme sport: Urban Volvo Hood Diving.
The only thing that prevents pedestrians from actively leaping onto an approaching car’s hood is that it hurts and has the potential to maim and kill you. Not anymore! Now you and your Euro friends can sit on street corners in Paris, Vienna, London and Madrid and jump at Volvos at will. Amazing! Check out the spec picture below, and tell me you wouldn’t jump onto this sucker:
To buy a car as easy as it feels to jump onto a car hood pillow, click here.