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Mercedes-Benz introduces seatbelt airbag for rear passengers

By SYF77 on 24 Jul 2012

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Calling it the Beltbag, Mercedes-Benz has announced plans to introduce inflatable rear seatbelt airbags on a luxury-class model, likely the next generation S Class sedan.

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The gas generator in the belt airbags would be triggered during severe frontal collisions only, which will then inflate the multi-layered belt strap with Velcro seams to nearly three times its normal width.The Beltbag is able to reduce the risk of injury to passengers in the rear in a head-on collision by lessening the strain placed on the ribcage.

"Mercedes-Benz is pursuing its safety initiative in the rear of vehicles with the Beltbag," comments Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rodolfo Schöneburg, Head of Passive Safety and Vehicle Functions at Mercedes-Benz Cars. "After all, the excellent standard of safety offered by Mercedes-Benz doesn't just apply to all model series, but to all seats, too."

However, Mercedes is not the first car maker to offer a seatbelt airbag. Ford and Lexus debut their version of the passive safety feature in the Explorer and LFA model in 2010 respectively. Unlike Mercedes’ system, Ford’s seat belt airbag is triggered by both side and frontal impacts.

Under normal usage, research showed that the Mercedes Beltbag’s added thickness improves passenger’s comfort too. Mercedes do not plan to introduce the Beltbag for the front occupants, as frontal airbags are already included on all models as a supplementary restraint system.

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Written by SYF77
I have been a car fanatic since 1989, when my father was changing our family car then to a Toyota Corolla 1.6 GL fitted with a Twin Cam 16 valve engine that was carburetor-fed, a big deal back in those days. The automobile technology and industry fascinates me and I hope to broadcast these interesting developments to everyone out there through this blog.

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