Ford brings rear inflatable seatbelts to European Mondeo models in 2013
DETROIT, June 27 — Ford has announced the launch of its inflatable airbag in Europe on its 2013 Mondeo model. The airbag/seatbelt hybrid was designed to reduce, in the case of an accident, head, neck and chest injuries for passengers in the back of the car.
When the car’s various sensors detect the conditions that lead to a sudden impact accident, the belt blows up to distribute the deceleration forces over a surface that is five times larger than on a traditional seatbelt. Compressed gas is released from a tank located below the backseats, and shoots through a duct inside the buckle to inflate the airbag unit. The whole process is over in less than 40 thousandths of a second.
When you get in the car, it’s used like any other seatbelt, and the device can also secure a child safety seat.
The inflatable seatbelt is already available in the US, on the Ford Explorer. In 2011, it earned the prestigious Breakthrough Award from Popular Mechanics. — AFP/Relaxnews