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'09 Malibu Vs. '59 Bel Air Crash Test

kdawson posted about 5 years ago | from the slight-knee-injury dept.

Transportation 496

theodp writes "To celebrate their 50th anniversary, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crashed a 1959 Chevrolet Bel Air into a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. Hate to spoil the ending of the video, but if you find yourself participating in a similar car-jousting contest, pick the Malibu over the Bel Air. (Not that you'll be complaining afterwards if you don't, or doing much of anything.) Guess there is something to those crumple zones after all."

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Classic Cars (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558389)

Why would the pointlessly ruin a 1959 Belair? It's not like they make those anymore.

Re:Classic Cars (4, Insightful)

blitzkrieg3 (995849) | about 5 years ago | (#29558585)

I'm not sure why everyone keeps bringing this up. IIHS doesn't consider it pointless to demonstratably show how far we've come since they started improving vehicle safety way back when. Additionally, it's an easy way to showcase the importance of the organization to the general public, kind of like how NASA highlights it's spacewalks and additional modules to the ISS even though most of what they do is boring research.

Re:Classic Cars (2, Insightful)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | about 5 years ago | (#29558673)

I'm not sure why everyone keeps bringing this up.

Then you have no soul. Old classic cars are not good *cars* as such, but they are classics, and that one in particular looked like it was in pretty good shape. Old cars make us smile not for being better cars, but because they are rare, and a 59 Bel-Air is one of the rarer of the rare.

Re:Classic Cars (1, Informative)

David Gerard (12369) | about 5 years ago | (#29558727)

Apparently they only paid a couple hundred dollars for this one, it wasn't a polished example.

Re:Classic Cars (1)

Planesdragon (210349) | about 5 years ago | (#29558749)

Old cars make us smile not for being better cars, but because they are rare, and a 59 Bel-Air is one of the rarer of the rare.

You're assuming that GM and the IIHS crashed an original car that could still be driven. They probably did the cheaper of:

1: Buy a beat-up Bel-Air that would never drive again, but whose body was in good condition.
2: Buy a rebuilt Bel-Air using original specs but modern parts
3: Just build one for test purpsoses.

Re:Classic Cars (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558793)

http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/09/18/more-details-about-1959-bel-air-crash-test/ [nytimes.com]

"We didn't want to crash a museum piece," Mr. Zuby said. "We were not looking for one that had been restored for museum or show quality." But the vehicle had to have a solid structure, although a little surface rust would be acceptable.

They found what they wanted in Indiana. "The frame was sound and all the body panels were sound," he said. It had a 3.9-liter 6-cylinder engine and was in driving condition.

The car was bought for about $8,500 and had about 74,000 miles on the odometer, which was broken. It was trucked to the test center in Virginia.

Re:Classic Cars (1, Insightful)

mweather (1089505) | about 5 years ago | (#29559027)

Only 74,000 miles? Could have been restored.

Re:Classic Cars (5, Insightful)

Schmorgluck (1293264) | about 5 years ago | (#29559085)

What part of "74,000 milse on the odometer, which was broken" did you overlook?

Re:Classic Cars (1)

TemporalBeing (803363) | about 5 years ago | (#29559001)

Old cars make us smile not for being better cars, but because they are rare, and a 59 Bel-Air is one of the rarer of the rare.

You're assuming that GM and the IIHS crashed an original car that could still be driven. They probably did the cheaper of:

1: Buy a beat-up Bel-Air that would never drive again, but whose body was in good condition. 2: Buy a rebuilt Bel-Air using original specs but modern parts 3: Just build one for test purpsoses.

Agreed - which also lends - was the steel used up to the same specs as what would have been used in the original ones off the assembly line, or was it the cheaper, lighter, more bendable stuff we use for cars now? If the car was not 100% identical to what would have rolled off the assembly line in 1958/1959 (since they start production in the prior year), and the frame had not been stressed in any way already (e.g. it was in an accident, etc.), then it's not a fair test as far as what the video shows.

There were a lot of vehicles from that era and earlier where the vehicles would have survived an accident intact - but the passengers would not, having been thrown around in the vehicle upon impact. Typically stronger steels were used, and designs were such that the vehicles were like tanks - but without passenger restraints it killed the passengers any way.

Just saying...

Re:Classic Cars (4, Insightful)

MBCook (132727) | about 5 years ago | (#29558813)

I just wish they showed the cars up close afterwards. While both are trashed, it's clear from the video that the A pillar just collapses on the Bel Air and the driver is probably crushed to death. Showing that (or whatever you can film) versus the still mostly intact cockpit of the Malibu would have driven the point home really well.

Re:Classic Cars (5, Informative)

los furtive (232491) | about 5 years ago | (#29559023)

They did: 09 Malibu [autoblog.com] and 59 Bel Air [autoblog.com] . RTFA and all that jazz.

Re:Classic Cars (3, Informative)

MachDelta (704883) | about 5 years ago | (#29559049)

You mean like this [autoblog.com] ? :)

The pictures with the doors removed are simply amazing. Note how, not only is the Bel Air dummy folded up like a pretzel, but the entire body of the car has twisted such that the rear door no longer fits properly. The Malibu on the other hand is almost untouched from the firewall back. What an awesome demonstration of energy dissipation.

Re:Classic Cars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558961)

I brought it up first...

Re:Classic Cars (3, Funny)

NixieBunny (859050) | about 5 years ago | (#29558745)

They shoulda used a 1958 model, considered to be the only non-classic late fifties Chevy.

Which is why I have one.

Re:Classic Cars (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 5 years ago | (#29558873)

'cause it wasn't the cool '57 Bel Air that is the quintessential All American Car. 1959 Bel Air, pfft, who gives a shit.

Re:Classic Cars (2, Funny)

nedlohs (1335013) | about 5 years ago | (#29559083)

Must have missed out on trading it in during cash for clunkers.

Speaking as a non-car-freak (5, Funny)

Eevee (535658) | about 5 years ago | (#29558393)

All I can say is "You bastards! You murdered a car with tail fins! Have you no heart?

Re:Speaking as a non-car-freak (4, Funny)

Eudial (590661) | about 5 years ago | (#29558573)

The brown car had such an angry mouth, so it was probably not a very nice car. But the gray car looked friendlier.

Re:Speaking as a non-car-freak (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 5 years ago | (#29558681)

As it had no Batphone, it would make a pretty lame Batmobile, don't you think?

Re:Speaking as a non-car-freak (2, Informative)

Matey-O (518004) | about 5 years ago | (#29558837)

They addressed that, they wanted a car that was structurally sound but not a trailer queen. It drove in under it's own power...an inline 6. So, it was useful to demonstrate the advances without being overly conspicuous in it's consumption.

Re:Speaking as a non-car-freak (-1, Troll)

tomhudson (43916) | about 5 years ago | (#29558955)

they wanted a car that was structurally sound but not a trailer queen. It drove in under it's own power...an inline 6

They went out of their way to avoid the engines colliding, because those inline 6 engines weigh a LOT. The video shows a front-left-fender vs front-left-fender collision. In a direct head-on crash, the Chevy's engine and transmission would cream the Malibus' much lighter engine/transaxle.

For this reason, the video is bogus.

Re:Speaking as a non-car-freak (4, Informative)

MachDelta (704883) | about 5 years ago | (#29559099)

How often do two vehicles on the highway hit each other dead-center head on? Front left fender vs front left fender is a more realistic approximation of a highway accident in my opinion. I'd take the Malibu.

Re:Speaking as a non-car-freak (5, Interesting)

DG (989) | about 5 years ago | (#29559139)

Actually, no, it wouldn't.

Notwithstanding the extra weight of the iron-block, iron-head inline 6, the Malibu's motor is still a substantial chunk of metal that can be considered essentially solid. You certainly aren't going to force the I6 motor THROUGH it.

What you will do is load up the engine mounts - which are much, much stronger on the Malibu, and designed to crumple in such a way that the passenger cabin is minimally infringed.

A more likely case in a 100% head-on collision is the Bel-Air's engine coming to rest in the Bel-Air's back seat, having been forced through the cabin by the Malibu.

DG

the wunnerful 50's, not (5, Informative)

Ancient_Hacker (751168) | about 5 years ago | (#29558431)

Right around that year GM went to a wild X-frame design which allowed the door sills to be moved down several inches, making the cars easier to step out of. But the X was not very strong-- there were plenty of news photos showing Impalas broken in half by not very hard accidents.

Also if you look at a 50's car, the bumpers are massive but held up by a couple thin pieces of mild steel stock-- a strong toddler could bend them out of place.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (1)

GRH (16141) | about 5 years ago | (#29558491)

Frickin slashdot 2! I meant to mod you Informative, because you are quite correct about the X-frame design of that time.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558557)

But then again, back in the 50's we didn't need all these fancy crumple zones, seat belts and air bags. Men were real men. Hell, I'll bet you dollars to donuts any man from the 50's driving that Bel-Air would have jumped right out of that wreck to help the crying sissy-boy with a cut lip driving that Malibu.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558791)

You're probably right. But the steering wheel impaled through Fifties Guy's gut would slow him down a bit. Wow, those old steering columns were nasty.

He still would have toughed it out, though, and called 09-guy a whiner.

Not exactly a surprise, just a wasteful PR stunt. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558617)

You are quite right, the '59 Chevy's in particular are as strong as warm butter. The end result should come as no surprise to anybody, who has worked on or driven any of these cars.

What I hate the most about the test though, is that they bought somebody's prized classic car and crashed it. Just look at the second video with interior footage. It even has a radio and two antennas in the rear. Couldn't they at least have removed that grille before destroying the car...? (No, guess not...)

Some celebration. God, I hate American companies sometimes...

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (3, Insightful)

SoCalChris (573049) | about 5 years ago | (#29558767)

My first car was a 57 Ford Custom 300 (Full size sedan). This was in 1995. The bumpers were massive and thick steel, and were bolted directly to the frame, nothing that a strong toddler could bend.

I was in an accident in it, a guy in a 1981 Toyota ran a red light and I t-boned him, going about 30mph. His frame was bent, axles were snapped, all side windows, the windshield, and rear window were broken. The frame damage snapped a few of his engine mounts, and also broke his radiator. His car was totaled. My car had the frame holding the headlight pushed back about half an inch, and scuffed the chrome bumper.

My observations were that I'd much rather be in an old tank like that in a minor accident. Anything major, and I'd rather be in a modern car with things like seatbelts, crumple zones and air bags.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (1)

anagama (611277) | about 5 years ago | (#29559003)

Yeah, it makes sense that an old tank destroy an old smaller car. But as you mention, modern cars protect better in bad crashes. Thing is, we don't get to choose our accidents so I'd choose a modern car for any crash. Besides, even in small crashes there is more than one collision going -- the one between the cars, and the one between the occupants and the interior of their cars. Modern cars do better at creating a box that isn't crushed and protecting occupants from slamming up against the inside of that box.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (5, Informative)

poopdeville (841677) | about 5 years ago | (#29559007)

My observations were that I'd much rather be in an old tank like that in a minor accident. Anything major, and I'd rather be in a modern car with things like seatbelts, crumple zones and air bags.

"Minor" accidents can be much more severe if your body is taking the jolt instead of the crumple zones. Injuries like whiplash are extremely common in "minor" accidents. You might be able to get your Ford's frame straightened, but you can't get your neck fixed anywhere as cheaply or easily.

30 mph is not a minor accident, by the way. That's like falling out of a second story window (taking into account conservation of momentum leading to smaller forces on your body)

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 5 years ago | (#29559029)

My observations were that I'd much rather be in an old tank like that in a minor accident. Anything major, and I'd rather be in a modern car with things like seatbelts, crumple zones and air bags.

I'm in love with the big body benzes, it dulls my senses...

Also known as, there is a happy middle ground: The Mercedes-Benz W126. There's a TON of room, and you could buy one and have the engine of your choice swapped in for less than buying a new car anywhere near as nice. I mention this because I want to keep them out of the scrap yard; I drive a 300SD (a diesel W126) and I like being able to get cheap body and chassis parts.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (5, Funny)

4D6963 (933028) | about 5 years ago | (#29559121)

My observations were that I'd much rather be in an old tank like that in a minor accident. Anything major, and I'd rather be in a modern car with things like seatbelts, crumple zones and air bags.

Yep, that's why before getting involved in any traffic accident, I always carefully choose the car I own which would be best suited. Now if you'll excuse me, I might accidentally run over my neighbour in his backyard while I'm on my way to the store. I think I'll pick the Hummer, it's the better one to get through wooden fences.

Ford is at parity with Toyota and Honda. (-1, Troll)

reporter (666905) | about 5 years ago | (#29558781)

The 2008 Vehicle Dependability Study [jdpower.com] by J. D. Powers indicates that both Buick (of GM) and Lincoln-Mercury (of Ford) have reached parity with Toyota and Honda.

Note that the scores in the chart [jdpower.com] for Lexus (at 120) and Toyota (at 159) differ by about 30% even though both brands are built by the same company and by the same process. In other words, if two brands have scores that differ by, at most 30%, then they should be considered equal in quality.

Hence, any brand with a score of 210.675 (= 159 / 120 * 159) matches the quality of the Toyota brand. In other words, both brands produced by Ford Motor Company now equal the Toyota brand in quality. Also, Chevrolet, the core brand produced by General Motors, continues to be inferior to the Toyota brand.

Best of all, the price of a Ford vehicle is less, by several thousand dollars, than the price of a Toyota vehicle. If you value your hard-earned money, then buy a Ford Fusion instead of a Toyota Camry.

Re:Ford is at parity with Toyota and Honda. (1)

CrankyFool (680025) | about 5 years ago | (#29558899)

Given that the Toyota and the Lexus are, actually, materially different (different materials, different design), I'm not sure how you can claim that because their scores are 30% apart, a 30% difference is immaterial.

Worse, the logic leap from that to say that the Ford brand, at 30% higher than Toyota, is basically equivalent to Toyota is a little breathtaking. By that logic, if we agree that 30% is basically a rounding error and we can ignore it, then it's worth noting that since the Kia, at 278, is only 30% higher than the Ford, it really should be considered equal in quality. In fact, since the Land Rover, at 368, is LESS than 30% higher than the Kia, it should be considered equal in quality.

And therefore, we can easily determine that the Land Rover, at 368, is basically equal in quality to the Lexus, at 120.

Brilliant!

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (2, Informative)

Joce640k (829181) | about 5 years ago | (#29558821)

The bumpers were never supposed to protect you in a big crash, only from the little knocks and scrapes you get when when parking. Maybe not even that, I'm sure a lot of them were just there to add some extra chrome to the car.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (1)

value_added (719364) | about 5 years ago | (#29558831)

Also if you look at a 50's car, the bumpers are massive but held up by a couple thin pieces of mild steel stock-- a strong toddler could bend them out of place.

That's a feature! ;-)

Seriously, though, there's still something to be said for older cars that don't require $1000 worth of work to fix a bumper damaged in a 15mph collision.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (3, Insightful)

afidel (530433) | about 5 years ago | (#29558985)

Nope, sorry but I would MUCH rather spend $1k than have my neck suffer 23G's of acceleration (what can occur in a 15mph crash without cushioning). That $1k represents a fraction of the monthly earnings for the average first world family, it's much cheaper to fix the car than fix the person.

Re:the wunnerful 50's, not (5, Insightful)

anagama (611277) | about 5 years ago | (#29559043)

Modern car crash: $1000 for bumper and $0.10 for bandaid, total: $1000.10

Old car crash: $50 to mend scratch on bumper, $7500 for head injury, untold lost earning power because now you're an idiot, total: $7550+

'52 Citroen DS (3, Interesting)

drerwk (695572) | about 5 years ago | (#29558439)

CitroÃn had unibody, disc brakes, and the equivelent of crush zones. The were required however to put a 5mph bumper on the car instead of the 4kph as in europe due to US insurance demand. Would like to know how the test would have looked against a Cit.

Re:'52 Citroen DS (0, Troll)

Kokuyo (549451) | about 5 years ago | (#29558579)

While I agree with your post, I'd like to point out that you mean kmph or km/h. kph would be kilos per hour... but kilos of what?

Re:'52 Citroen DS (2, Funny)

ZERO1ZERO (948669) | about 5 years ago | (#29558619)

kilos of metres, obviously.

I see the problem. (5, Funny)

SilverHatHacker (1381259) | about 5 years ago | (#29558467)

It should have been a reverse Bel Air. [xkcd.com]

Now this is a story all about how my life got flip turned upside-down. I'd like to take a minute, just sit right there, I'll tell you how I totally destroyed a classic car in the name of science.

Where's the engine? (1)

e9th (652576) | about 5 years ago | (#29558497)

Seriously, can anyone see an engine in the BelAir?

Re:Where's the engine? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558531)

It had the straight six, which you can see on the interior shot shoving the dashboard back violently. The straight 6 engines in those cars offered no protection in an offset crash, and just smashed back through the dash killing the occupants, who were dead anyway.

Re:Where's the engine? (1)

e9th (652576) | about 5 years ago | (#29558551)

Ah, I think you're right. I was assuming a V8.

YouTube Commenters strike again (5, Insightful)

the Dragonweaver (460267) | about 5 years ago | (#29558501)

The comments on the video are rather telling. A number of people claim the video must have been faked, because "The Chevy would have barely gotten scratched."

Notably, a number of the panelists on the hearing about the sinking of the Titanic expressed serious doubts that mere ice could have torn iron. In other words, time marches on, but ignorance of physics remains a constant. (Also see, "This is the first time in the history of mankind that fire has melted steel.")

Re:YouTube Commenters strike again (2, Informative)

ucblockhead (63650) | about 5 years ago | (#29558625)

All you have to do is look at the fatality rates. The number of people who die per mile traveled today is a quarter of the number in the early fifties.

Re:YouTube Commenters strike again (3, Insightful)

the_raptor (652941) | about 5 years ago | (#29558871)

All cars now also come with seat belts and most people wear them.

Re:YouTube Commenters strike again (4, Insightful)

Anarchduke (1551707) | about 5 years ago | (#29558859)

There are many aspects of old tech that are still superior to current tech. The primary reason it isn't done is cost of manufacturing. All this "self-evident, 50+ years of engineering" nonsense is quite presumptuous. Hitler used similar arguments making the case for white supremacy. Business buys results, not pure research.ï This is a propaganda ad pure and simple. Go check who paid for this to be made and who profits from it.

The YouTube stupidity wasn't limited to claiming it was faked. Here we have an actual YouTube commenter trying to draw a comparison between Hitler's Eugenics program and the engineering principles behind car safety. It's like crazy in a can.

Re:YouTube Commenters strike again (3, Funny)

Eudial (590661) | about 5 years ago | (#29559025)

The YouTube stupidity wasn't limited to claiming it was faked. Here we have an actual YouTube commenter trying to draw a comparison between Hitler's Eugenics program and the engineering principles behind car safety. It's like crazy in a can.

You must be new to the Youtube comment section. Welcome.

Re:YouTube Commenters strike again (1)

westlake (615356) | about 5 years ago | (#29559011)

Notably, a number of the panelists on the hearing about the sinking of the Titanic expressed serious doubts that mere ice could have torn iron

The collision with the iceberg didn't have to tear anything, it only had to buckle the plates and pop the rivets.

TopGear (5, Interesting)

CountBrass (590228) | about 5 years ago | (#29558505)

A recent TopGear did something similar: they crashed an NCAP (European crash standards body) 5 star+ rated (the highest rating) car (Renault Espace) into an earlier model of the same car (a 1998 Espace I think it was) at 35 mph.

The crash investigator they had evaluate the results said the driver of the older car would have had multiple broken bones, including both femurs, and even if he'd survived the crash he would have bled to death by the time they could extract him, which would take 30-40 minutes as the car was so badly deformed.

In contrast, the modern Espace's computers decided the crash wasn't bad enough to deploy the air bags! Only the seat belt pre-tensioners fired. The investigator thought everyone in that car would have walked away from the accident uninjured.

Their conclusion was that modern crumple zones and stiffer chassis work but because they are stiffer older cars suffer much more when colliding with a modern car.

What always surprises me is how much damage is done to any car, old or new, at these low speeds! Really says to me that any speed limit over 40 mph on any single-carriage way road is just insane.

Re:TopGear (1)

CountBrass (590228) | about 5 years ago | (#29558543)

PS

Scares me even more that I drive a 2 seater sports car with a 3.2 litre engine and I regularly overtake fast on single carriage ways: 1 car pulling out and I'd go squish.

that would be Fifth Gear (5, Funny)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about 5 years ago | (#29558563)

Top Gear tries to stay away from useful facts and info as much as possible.

And the idea of Top Gear having TWO cars that cost below $40,000 on the screen at the same is pretty far fetched.

Re:that would be Fifth Gear (1)

fridaynightsmoke (1589903) | about 5 years ago | (#29558645)

Top Gear tries to stay away from useful facts and info as much as possible.

And the idea of Top Gear having TWO cars that cost below $40,000 on the screen at the same is pretty far fetched.

Indeed, sir.
The last series (in the UK at least) I feel was better than last year's in that respect, I think the cheapest car they had on the show last year was a BMW M3, and that was as an example of an 'ordinary' car!
Fifth Gear, despite its problems, is carrying the baton for 'everyman' motoring.

Re:that would be Fifth Gear (3, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | about 5 years ago | (#29558847)

Is *anybody* here under the illusion that watching Top Gear will help them choose their next car? Sheesh.

Re:that would be Fifth Gear (1)

fridaynightsmoke (1589903) | about 5 years ago | (#29558975)

Is *anybody* here under the illusion that watching Top Gear will help them choose their next car? Sheesh.

Hey, I bought a Focus ST on Top Gear's (2005) recommendation.
It USED to be a 'useful' program, but has since became almost cartoonish.

Re:TopGear (2, Insightful)

Kartoffel (30238) | about 5 years ago | (#29558715)

"Really says to me that any speed limit over 40 mph on any single-carriage way road is just insane."

Typical nanny-state goodthink from the UK, amirite?

Re:TopGear (2, Informative)

MartinSchou (1360093) | about 5 years ago | (#29558827)

Arranging head on collisions sounds a lot more like 5th Gear than Top Gear.

But just like the Chevy test video linked to hear, everyone's on YouTube's an expert when it comes to stuff like that.

They've done several like Renault Espace vs. Land Rover Discovery [youtube.com] and Volvo 940 estate vs Renault Modus [youtube.com] .

I don't recall one with a new and old Espace. The closest I can come to that comparison is the 940 vs the Modus, but that doesn't mean they (or Top Gear) didn't do one with Espace vs Espace - I just can't remember seeing it.

Re:TopGear (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29559135)

What always surprises me is how much damage is done to any car, old or new, at these low speeds!

Not so surprise: the car kinetic energy is:
0.5*m*v^2
which increases by factor of 4 when doubling speed.
This energy is to be dissipated at crash...

Lets go further. Imagine you are 70Kg (=154 lb), and you travel at 50Km/h (top speed at Spanish cities). Imagine you crash into a solid wall, and you are lucky enough your car nose gets deformated 1meter. The seat belt, has to do a work on your body so dissipates all your kinetic energy during that meter (work = force * distance). Thus, you can get an average of the force of the seat belt on your chest:

0.5*70*13.8^2 = 1*Force_in_Newton
(13.8m/s=50Km/h=31miles/h)

This is 6750 N (=690Kg_force = 1520 lb_force). This is an average! the peak shall be higher!. Note also that 1meter is perhaps an optimistic deformation (just look at the pictures...)

Hopefully you get aware of the crash and you can brake, but when people get slept at the wheel, results are so bad.
If we duplicate the speed (100Km/h, 62 miles/h), the deformation shall increase but not much longer than 1m, and the energy is multiplied by 4, so a force around 2000Kg_force or 4400 lb_force is expected.

*BSD is Dying (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558513)

It is now official. Netcraft confirms: *BSD is dying

One more crippling bombshell hit the already beleaguered *BSD community when IDC confirmed that *BSD market share has dropped yet again, now down to less than a fraction of 1 percent of all servers. Coming on the heels of a recent Netcraft survey which plainly states that *BSD has lost more market share, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. *BSD is collapsing in complete disarray, as fittingly exemplified by failing dead last [samag.com] in the recent Sys Admin comprehensive networking test.

You don't need to be the Amazing Kreskin [amazingkreskin.com] to predict *BSD's future. The hand writing is on the wall: *BSD faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for *BSD because *BSD is dying. Things are looking very bad for *BSD. As many of us are already aware, *BSD continues to lose market share. Red ink flows like a river of blood.

FreeBSD is the most endangered of them all, having lost 93% of its core developers. The sudden and unpleasant departures of long time FreeBSD developers Jordan Hubbard and Mike Smith only serve to underscore the point more clearly. There can no longer be any doubt: FreeBSD is dying.

Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

OpenBSD leader Theo states that there are 7000 users of OpenBSD. How many users of NetBSD are there? Let's see. The number of OpenBSD versus NetBSD posts on Usenet is roughly in ratio of 5 to 1. Therefore there are about 7000/5 = 1400 NetBSD users. BSD/OS posts on Usenet are about half of the volume of NetBSD posts. Therefore there are about 700 users of BSD/OS. A recent article put FreeBSD at about 80 percent of the *BSD market. Therefore there are (7000+1400+700)*4 = 36400 FreeBSD users. This is consistent with the number of FreeBSD Usenet posts.

Due to the troubles of Walnut Creek, abysmal sales and so on, FreeBSD went out of business and was taken over by BSDI who sell another troubled OS. Now BSDI is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house.

All major surveys show that *BSD has steadily declined in market share. *BSD is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If *BSD is to survive at all it will be among OS dilettante dabblers. *BSD continues to decay. Nothing short of a miracle could save it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, *BSD is dead.

Fact: *BSD is dying

And some follow up comments (5, Informative)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 5 years ago | (#29558523)

A few people were calling shenanigans, claiming there was no drive train or that the IIHS used a vehicle with a rusted out frame.
So a writer for the NY Times caught up with "David Zuby, the senior vice president at the institute's crash-test center in Virginia"
http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/09/18/more-details-about-1959-bel-air-crash-test/ [nytimes.com]

Re:And some follow up comments (1)

jcaren (862362) | about 5 years ago | (#29558613)

Hmm speed is pretty critical. SOmeone impacted my '86 volvo 760 some years ago in a brand new
vauxhall. I was stationary at light ne decided to try and get through the red light but did not
see me stopped in front.

He shunted my car through the lights and the imact pushed the radio console out. I turned off the engine
and had to push the console backinto place.

WHen we checked over both cars and exchanged details the front of his car to the radiator was crushed to pulp.
My volvo had a scratch on the rear bumper - he never even got *near* paintwork.

When I spoke to my mechanic he asked me to estimate the speed and I said just uunder 30MPH. He told me
the impact absorbers in the frame were rated for this and did nto have to be replaced. tests proved he
was right.

I also rememebr a photo from a news article about someone who fell asleep at the wheel and drove into
a concrete motorway bridge and 70 in a car simialr to mine (but with air bags). He walked away unscratched.

SO, crumple zones are not the only solution to low and high speed crashes - btu they are the only cheap solution
that results in very high insurance costs...

Jacqui

Re:And some follow up comments (1)

tinkerghost (944862) | about 5 years ago | (#29558763)

He shunted my car through the lights and the imact pushed the radio console out. I turned off the engine and had to push the console backinto place.

Similar story, I stopped at a red light & someone from the other direction ran it & got T-boned. She ended up on the grill of my wife's '74 Nova. When the tow truck pulled her off the grill, I had to replace the plastic grill, the headlight, and another piece of plastic trim. Her bumper and radiator literally fell off when they pulled her car back.

Based on that, I will say I was a bit surprised at the amount of damage done to the '59. I expected the steel frame to hold the car together a lot better than a bunch of sheet metal.

Re:Crumple zones (2, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | about 5 years ago | (#29559041)

It's nothing to do with cheapness (steel girders are a lot cheaper than all the R&D needed to design good crumple zones) it's to do with safety and weight reduction.

Crumple zones are safer. If you're sat in a rigid box then you take a much higher G-force peak than if you're sat in something that deforms. What are you more worried about in a head-on, yourself or the car?

Crumple zones mean weight is only added where it's needed, body panels can be thinner/lighter. Less weight means better performance and fuel economy. I realize a light car is unpatriotic in the USA but the savings in fuel, tires and insurance (light car=smaller engine) will more than offset the slightly higher number of dents from not lugging 2000 pounds of useless steel with you everywhere you go.

Re:And some follow up comments (1)

0123456 (636235) | about 5 years ago | (#29559075)

My volvo had a scratch on the rear bumper - he never even got *near* paintwork.

We seem to have had the opposite experience with 1980s Volvos; two of them were written off after collisions with a friend's 1970s car and van where his total repair bills were about $500.

Re:And some follow up comments (2, Informative)

NIK282000 (737852) | about 5 years ago | (#29558717)

The malibu does seem to be the better choice in this case but the instant cloud of rust around the Bel Air makes me think that it wasn't 100% mint condition for this test.

/sticks to his jeep

Re:And some follow up comments (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about 5 years ago | (#29558885)

It wasn't rust, see: http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/09/18/more-details-about-1959-bel-air-crash-test/ [nytimes.com]

PS: Jeeps flip over at the slightest provocation ... and flip-overs are among the most likely-to-be-fatal type of accident.

Re:And some follow up comments (1)

poopdeville (841677) | about 5 years ago | (#29559055)

Jeeps come with roll cages... A jeep driver won't be getting crushed. At worst (and this is a very real danger), a foreign object will enter the cabin and damage the passengers.

is there any historical data available? (1)

Trepidity (597) | about 5 years ago | (#29558525)

I realize the crash-test setup and standards continually change, but is there any sort of archive of data tables, or graphs, or something of that sort, showing improvement over time? Like, can I see what the difference in forces on the driver or likelihood of serious injury would be for a 1985 Civic vs. a 2005 Civic going 40 mph into a barrier?

Re:is there any historical data available? (2, Informative)

fridaynightsmoke (1589903) | about 5 years ago | (#29558731)

I realize the crash-test setup and standards continually change, but is there any sort of archive of data tables, or graphs, or something of that sort, showing improvement over time? Like, can I see what the difference in forces on the driver or likelihood of serious injury would be for a 1985 Civic vs. a 2005 Civic going 40 mph into a barrier?

There are details of European crash tests at http://www.euroncap.com/ [euroncap.com]
As al 'almost' example of what you are looking for, please compare the results for a Ford Escort (this model introduced 1990) http://www.euroncap.com/tests/ford_escort_1999/33.aspx [euroncap.com] vs a current model Ford Focus (introduced 2004) http://www.euroncap.com/tests/ford_focus_2004/204.aspx [euroncap.com]

Re:is there any historical data available? (1)

KokorHekkus (986906) | about 5 years ago | (#29558759)

Nothing going that far back but http://www.euroncap.com/home.aspx [euroncap.com] has some somewhat older results. For example, the 2006 Civic (http://www.euroncap.com/tests/honda_civic_2006/270.aspx [euroncap.com] ) compares quite favourably with the 1998 Civic (http://www.euroncap.com/tests/honda_civic_1998/35.aspx [euroncap.com] ). Looks like they changed to a new rating scheme this year though.

Re:is there any historical data available? (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about 5 years ago | (#29558935)

The only number which counts is the number of stars. The new tests have more detail but the end result is still number of stars (from 1 to 5).

Re:is there any historical data available? (1)

Penguinoflight (517245) | about 5 years ago | (#29558819)

It's not a fair comparison. The 85 civic weighs considerably less, 500-1000lbs depending on the configuration. This means that while your 2005 civic may hit the barrier at 40mph, a driver with similar response time would hit the barrier at 30-35 in their 85.

Static tests aren't really a good indicator of overall safety.

Patiently waits (2, Insightful)

fridaynightsmoke (1589903) | about 5 years ago | (#29558537)

/patiently wates for some idiot to ignore the fact that road deaths are consistently going down in absolute terms, and in per-vehicle-mile terms; and to claim that dangerous cars/roads are 'safer', that everyone overcompansates for advances in safety, and that cars should have a spike on the steering wheel.

Re:Patiently waits (4, Funny)

tsm_sf (545316) | about 5 years ago | (#29558657)

and that cars should have a spike on the steering wheel reminded me of an old Letterman top 10... thank you, Internet!

Top 10 Ways American Cars Would be Different if Ralph Nader Had Never Been Born


10. Dashboard hibachis
9. Seat belts made of piano wire
8. Windshield replaced with ant farm for kids
7. Strobe headlights make oncoming traffic look like old time movie
6. 50-foot antennas allow you to broadcast while driving
5. Optional front-seat hammocks
4. Wiper fluid reservoir routinely filled with thousand island dressing
3. New York City taxis would be exactly the same
2. The paper Buick
1. Speedometer replaced with electronic voice chanting "Punch it! Punch it!"

Safety (0, Flamebait)

TheReb (1645441) | about 5 years ago | (#29558609)

I'd feel much more safe driving a Chevy Bel-Air than a new Malibu, feeling you dont bump and hurt yourself is just as important as knowing you "probably wont die". Because a Bel-air you feel you are driving something, whereas in a new Malibu, you just direct it. It can be compared to flying in an airplane, if you are not in control enough, you might fear flying no matter how much you know about how safe it is, compared to driving. Today Bel-air drivers do not crash, simply because they care about driving and their car, but that is of course irrelevant to this, but i state this nevertheless.

And this repels morons? (5, Insightful)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | about 5 years ago | (#29558665)

So "caring about driving and their car" mysteriously repels the morons who jump lights, drive too fast on wet roads, overtake on blind bends, or drive the wrong way down divided roads?

My friend, many motorcyclists care deeply about their bikes, but that does not prevent surgeons from referring to them as "organ donors".

Re:And this repels morons? (4, Informative)

Comatose51 (687974) | about 5 years ago | (#29558971)

They've also contributed greatly to the field of psychology and neuroscience by demonstrating what parts of the brain is responsible for what cognitive function.

Re:And this repels morons? (2, Interesting)

KahabutDieDrake (1515139) | about 5 years ago | (#29559015)

Actually, being an attentive and skilled operator of your vehicle can and will reduce the chances of an accident drastically. I have several horror stories about coming within inches of a major accident, only to dodge it. Mainly because I take my cars to track day and know exactly how far they can be pushed. If you do this regularly, and you pay attention while driving, you can and will react properly in an emergency. Your "average" driver out there is a danger to themselves and everyone else. But there are some of us that can actually handle our cars. At the end of the day, nothing is going to solve the problem of idiots on the road, but you can go a long way towards mitigating it.

Re:Safety (1)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about 5 years ago | (#29558671)

Even if you are a perfect driver, you still have to worry about the other guy.

If a Malibu did this, imagine what would happed to you if an SUV hit the Bel-Air. Ok, you'd probably suffer less, you'd be chunky salsa....

I drive a 58 Chevy... (5, Interesting)

NixieBunny (859050) | about 5 years ago | (#29558611)

...so this test was especially interesting for me. Remind me to keep to divided highways in the future.

One reason that the door crumpled so readily is the crazy wraparound windshield. The windshield pillar contains a free-hanging right angle, which is not the way that a structural engineer would have done it. It also bangs the knees.

The big problem with older cars is that the body shape was sculpted from clay in a studio separate from the rest of the car designers, rather than being designed as part of an automobile. The end result being that the body shape had no basis in sound mechanical design.

Re:I drive a 58 Chevy... (1)

poopdeville (841677) | about 5 years ago | (#29559087)

The big problem with older cars is that the body shape was sculpted from clay in a studio separate from the rest of the car designers, rather than being designed as part of an automobile. The end result being that the body shape had no basis in sound mechanical design.

Yeah... that just plain bull. Look up the "Budd Company".

Pointless Sensationalism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558695)

Isn't it strange how they never mention the speeds of the vehicles?
 
And why do they collide at an angle, because that definitely favors one style of construction over another - frame, engine placement, driver's side vs. passenger side, body materials, bumpers, etc.
 
Just a waste of a good old car that would be running in 100 years, unlike the 2009 plasticized obsolescence prone electronically "enhanced" US style-over-substance car.
 
Sigh...!
   

Re:Pointless Sensationalism (2, Informative)

jjohnson (62583) | about 5 years ago | (#29558809)

They collide them at an angle because that's the most typical head-on collision scenario. Full head-on collisions are rare.

Re:Pointless Sensationalism (4, Insightful)

osu-neko (2604) | about 5 years ago | (#29558887)

And why do they collide at an angle, because that definitely favors one style of construction over another - frame, engine placement, driver's side vs. passenger side, body materials, bumpers, etc.

Because in the real world, cars collide at an angle just short of 100% of the time. Getting an actual, straight, head-on collision is a very difficult task that requires a great deal of setup and effort on the part of the people doing the testing. In the real world, drivers don't arrange their crashes with such mathematical precision. "at an angle" is pretty much a given...

STUPID STUPID STUPID..... (-1, Troll)

IHC Navistar (967161) | about 5 years ago | (#29558735)

So they destroyed a CLASSIC CAR THAT STOPPED BEING MAGE 50 YEARS AGO just to celebrate their 50th anniversery?

Hope the asshats who made that decision aren't around much longer.....

Re:STUPID STUPID STUPID..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558825)

So they destroyed a CLASSIC CAR THAT STOPPED BEING MAGE 50 YEARS AGO just to celebrate their 50th anniversery?

Hope the asshats who made that decision aren't around much longer.....

Yes. How dare we sacrifice something in order to learn!

Re:STUPID STUPID STUPID..... (1)

0123456 (636235) | about 5 years ago | (#29558893)

Yes. How dare we sacrifice something in order to learn!

While this video is interesting in an abstract kind of way, I can't help but wonder what you think we really 'learn' from it? We know that 1950s cars weren't built with much attention paid to crash safety, and while it does clearly demonstrate that a modern car is much safer than a car of that era, there are so few of those cars still on the road that you can hardly argue that it will even convince drivers to switch from unsafe old cars to much safer new ones.

That said, if they did only pay $200 for it then it was probably a clunker which was not worth repairing; though then you have to wonder whether it was really a good example to use in a crash test (e.g. rotten structural members or whatever).

Re:STUPID STUPID STUPID..... (-1, Flamebait)

mangu (126918) | about 5 years ago | (#29558927)

How dare we sacrifice something in order to learn!

Yeah, let's burn the original Declaration of the Independence in order to learn if parchment burns!

Moron...

Re:STUPID STUPID STUPID..... (2, Funny)

tomhudson (43916) | about 5 years ago | (#29559065)

How dare we sacrifice something in order to learn!

Yeah, let's burn the original Declaration of the Independence in order to learn if parchment burns!

Good thing Bush isn't around any more - he'd buy into it.

Re:STUPID STUPID STUPID..... (1)

AigariusDebian (721386) | about 5 years ago | (#29559061)

All cars older than 10 years should be banned from the roads and a few best examples should be put in the museums with disabled engines - the rest should be just crushed. The impact on the society from them and the irresposible people drive these cars is way too great: more emmissions, more pollution in cities, more crashes, more maintenance costs, higher healthcare costs for all the injured people, higher insurance premiums from all the dead people, ...

BAN THE CLUNKERS!

body on frame (1)

BobZee1 (1065450) | about 5 years ago | (#29558775)

i have long argued this with my "car friends" - a body-on-frame situation doesn't help you much.

Compensation (1)

michaelmalak (91262) | about 5 years ago | (#29558895)

Great, so now drivers, having this knowledge of crumple zones, will take more risks.

One member of the pedestrian advocacy community refers to these innovations as "safe crashing". They make drivers safer, but also encourage more risky driving, putting unprotected pedestrians at disproportionate risk.

WOWZERS!!!! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29558897)

From the looks of the accident both parties would have died. Lol but no seriously I wouldnt want to be in any of those cars in that accident. But if I had to choose between those cars I would still pick the Bel Air. Honestly think about it, they made the Malibu to get in the accident for this purpose, so dont you think they would have made it a little bit stronger. I dont think that a regular 09 Malibu would stand a chance.

Re:WOWZERS!!!! (1)

AigariusDebian (721386) | about 5 years ago | (#29559077)

Actually all passengers inthe Malibu would have only minor injuries, while all Bel Air passengers would most likely be dead.

I call shenannigans! (0, Redundant)

tomhudson (43916) | about 5 years ago | (#29558909)

If you look at the video, they didn't do a head-on crash - it was left-front fender against left-front fender. In a head-on, the Bel-Airs' much more massive engine block would have cut through the Malibu.

Re:I call shenannigans! (3, Insightful)

poopdeville (841677) | about 5 years ago | (#29559131)

I have a hard time believing that you can predict that. Why do you think the Bel-Air's block would "cut through the Malibu" instead of cutting through the Bel-Air's cabin, like it essentially did in this test?

How about some REAL bumpers? (1)

EWAdams (953502) | about 5 years ago | (#29558917)

My dad's got a 1946 Dodge pickup. Pickups are notoriously unsafe, but the bumpers on this thing are attached directly to the frame. Both the frame and the bumpers are made of steel about half an inch thick, and the bumpers stick out a good foot ahead of and behind the body.

It would be a lousy thing to crash in -- no seat belts, metal dashboard. But for your ordinary low-speed fender bender it would total any modern car on the road.

Why don't they make cars with REAL bumpers?

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