Saturday, May 06, 2006

Crash Test: Renault Espace (MPV) vs Land Rover Discovery (4x4)

If you want to transport your family safely across the city, which would you choose? A MPV loaded with new safety gadgets or a 4-wheel drive which looks like it could roll over any incoming vehicles? Fifth Gear (which is surprisingly entertaining and informative at the same time in its new season, despite still using self-gratifying ex-racing drivers as hosts) decided to test this theory. So the test was between the new Renault Espace (revealed by the Euro NCAP to be the safest car they've tested so far) and an old Land Rover Discovery (a 4x4 which still holds a special place in many people's heart. Incidentally, 4x4s are outnumbering other cars by 3 to 1 in the UK cause lots of school-runners there feel it's safer to travel in such vehicles). The two cars were filled up with 2 crash-test dummies each. These dummies each costs 100,000 pounds cause they are loaded with sensors that will measure the impact of a crash on the head, neck and other parts of the body. The cars were pulled by winches to meet each other at 40mph and the results? Well, if you think that perceived structural sturdiness beats engineering efforts, you better think again. The occupants of the Renault were calculated to be able to walk away from the crash, shaken and stirred but unhurt while the Discovery's occupants would have suffered major injuries if they were real people in it. So, next time you wanna get a car for your family, better do more research:)

1 comment:

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