The new Mercedes Benz C-Class has passed the European NCAP (New Car Assessment Programme) crash tests with flying colours. The Saloon has therefore been awarded five stars and, according to the Euro NCAP organisation, is one of the safest cars available on the market.
This result is confirmation that the C-Class safety concept, optimised based on the analysis of real-life accidents, also performs extremely well in standardised rating crash tests. With seven airbags, seatbelt tensioners, belt-force limiters and NECK PRO crash-responsive head restraints fitted as standard, the Saloon offers its occupants an extremely high level of protection should an accident occur. The body structure has been designed to ensure that, in the event of a frontal collision, the impact forces are distributed over a wide area and on four independently acting impact levels, meaning that the passenger cell remains largely unscathed.
Around 70 per cent of all the bodywork panels are made from state-of-the-art, high-strength steel alloys that minimise weight and maximise safety. These steel grades also play a key role in protecting the occupants in the event of a side impact. The quadruple-skinned B-pillars and the side members, which absorb the bulk of any side-impact forces and channel these forces into the body structure, are made partially from ultra-high-strength, hot-formed high-tech steel.
The C-Class safety systems are based on a tried-and-trusted Mercedes concept that takes a holistic approach towards passenger-car safety, with the emphasis firmly on accident avoidance and anticipatory occupant protection.
Standard-fit systems such as ESP and Brake Assist aid drivers at critical moments and help them to remain fully in control should a dangerous situation arise. Accident statistics show that the number of accidents caused by skidding and head-to-tail collisions with serious consequences is reduced significantly if these Mercedes technologies are on board. In addition, Brake Assist also helps to reduce the number of accidents involving pedestrians. Furthermore, the C-Class is the world's only car in this market segment to feature an anticipatory occupant protection system in the shape of PRE-SAFE. Standard on all UK C-Class Saloons, this Mercedes Benz innovation uses the time between detection of a potential accident situation and a possible collision to initiate preventive protective measures, thus reducing the loads exerted on the occupants in the event of an accident by up to 40 per cent.Published 22 December 2007