Today, cars now have more and more airbags as standard in order to help protect occupants better. From the side curtain airbags to knee airbags, there is now an airbag in almost all places of the vehicle. Recently, a new type of airbag has been developed, and Hyundai has been busy working to fit it in its upcoming lineup of vehicles.
The South Korean automaker recently developed a new, lightweight center side airbag in order to further protect passengers from serious injuries in the event of an accident. Specifically, the new airbag system protects front occupants from hitting each other in the event of a side crash. It works by expanding an airbag in the space between the driver and front passenger seat, preventing serious head injuries to both the driver and front passenger.
If there is no one in the front passenger seat, the airbag will protect the driver from a side collision coming from the right side. The center side airbag is installed in the driver's seat and will automatically deploy once a crash/impact has been detected.
According to Hyundai, the new center airbag is expected to reduce head injuries caused by the driver and passenger colliding with each other by as much as 80%. According to the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association’s statistics, the rate of secondary damage caused by these kinds of collisions or from hitting parts of the interior is about 45%.
Hyundai claims their new safety feature is “one of the lightest-weight center side airbags in the world”. Thanks to modern technology, their airbag is around 500g lighter than competing products. Because of its small size, it can also be used in the type of seat it can be fitted on.
Aside from Hyundai vehicles, the new center-side airbag is expected to be featured in upcoming Kia models as well.