Thursday, August 03, 2006

Reliable Protection for Child Passengers

Text from Volkswagen AG.
Child safety has top priority with Volkswagen

Wolfsburg, 02 August 2006 - Vehicle safety is important for all vehicle occupants, particularly for children. For this reason, the development engineers at Volkswagen also concentrate on small passengers. Numerous safety features for children are integrated in current Volkswagen models as standard.

Even today, approximately 50 percent of fatal accidents involving child passengers are caused by inadequate protection or failure to use protective systems. For example child seats: European studies demonstrate that more than half of all child seats are fitted or used incorrectly. If the vehicle has integrated child seats, there is no need to fit and remove child seats – a task that is often awkward.

In the Passat, Volkswagen offers a completely new generation of integrated child seats for children aged between three and twelve years of age (weight classes II to III). The new seat is easy to operate and can be folded flush into the rear seat bench when not in use. The safety experts at Volkswagen have adapted the child seats so that the small passengers can sit comfortably and in safety: the seat bolsters are now more ergonomic and can be adjusted on the sides to protect the body in the event of a side-impact collision. Specially designed side head restraints protect the head and neck. They also prevent the child slumping to the side, for example when asleep, and assuming a dangerous position.

The folding boosters are another plus. In the event of a collision, the rear of the booster is lowered in a fraction of a second to prevent the child submarining under the belt. This patented mechanism is particularly effective in head-on collisions. The integrated child seat in the Passat has been awarded a prize by the German motorist association ADAC and is available as an optional extra for 255 euros (two seats for 445 euros). Integrated child seats are also available for the Sharan (for up to four children) as optional equipment for 220 euros each.

The Isofix system anchors portable child seats particularly well. Standard connectors attach the child seat firmly to the vehicle body. The advantage of Isofix is that it is simple and fool-proof to operate and holds the child seat firmly in the vehicle. The Isofix standard anchor points are fitted to the outer rear seats in all Volkswagen models as standard. The Isofix system is fitted to the front passenger seat as standard in some models, and is optional in the Eos convertible coupé. As in all Volkswagen models, the front passenger airbag can be deactivated by using a keyswitch, for example when transporting a rear-facing baby seat (in the Fox the front passenger airbag can be deactivated by Volkswagen dealerships).

The very good results in the Euro NCAP child protection crash tests are yet another testament to the development expertise of Volkswagen. The Fox was awarded 42 points, the best score in the super-mini class. The Golf and the Passat also performed convincingly and were awarded 37 points and 38 points respectively.

Unseen dangers often lurk inside vehicles: objects that have not been secured can strike children and adults in the event of sudden braking manoeuvres and collisions. Volkswagen vehicles have numerous stowage compartments where these objects can be stowed safely. For example the Touran: the compact MPV has a total of 39 stowage compartments. For example, drawers can be fitted under the driver and front passenger seats. Three individual compartments are integrated in the roof console, and the door trims have compartments that can easily hold a 1-litre bottle.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have heard that rear side airbags -- an option in jetta, GLI and other models -- are hazardous to children in car seats. Do you have any results on this?

Thu. Aug. 17, 08:54:00 a.m.  

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