General Motors has just announced its latest safety innovation — the industry’s first front center air bag. Charlotte Brake Replacement Chevrolet told us this inflatable restraint is designed to protect passengers in the event of a far-side impact.
Available on the 2013 Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia, and Chevrolet Traverse crossovers, the airbag will deploy to the right of the driver’s side and provide restraint during passenger-side crashes when the driver is the only front occupant. Aurora Chevrolet said this airbag will also act as an energy absorbing cushion between driver and front passenger in both driver- and passenger-side crashes.
“The front center air bag is not required by federal regulation, and no other air bag in passenger vehicles today offers the type of restraint and cushioning this air bag is designed to provide for front occupants,” said Scott Thomas, senior staff engineer in GM’s advanced restraint systems.
According to Chevrolet Dealer Indianapolis, this type of airbag has been under development for three years and employed the help of GM’s technology supplier Takata. The restraint has been designed to work in a variety of crashes and occupant positions, and it’s also useful for a range of occupant sizes.
“While no restraint technology can address all body regions or all potential injuries, the front center air bag is designed to work with the other air bags and safety belts in the vehicles to collectively deliver an even more comprehensive occupant restraint system,” said Gay Kent, GM executive director of Vehicle Safety and Crashworthiness. “This technology is a further demonstration of GM’s above-and-beyond commitment to provide continuous occupant protection before, during and after a crash.”