GM To Introduce “AirToungue” For Side-Impact Crashes?
“Front airbags have done wonders for the most common type of collision, which is running into something head first. But 11 percent of car accident fatalities are caused by “far-side impact crashes,” which is where your car gets hit on the opposite side from where you’re sitting, sending you into the passenger seat if you’re behind the wheel.
GM is introducing a new type of airbag in some of its midsize SUVs for 2013 that’s designed to keep you safe in accidents like these by deploying out from the front seats into the center of the car. It’s a tubular design (in form factor, not awesomeness, although it’s also pretty awesome) that pops out of the side of your seat before you can say “I hate bugs”.
The cushion provides restraint to keep your head from ending up in the passenger seat while the rest of your body stays securely belted into the driver’s seat. It’s taken GM three years of research to get it to work, and it should also make a difference in rollovers — which don’t happen so often, yet carry a high mortality rate.”