The All New Volvo C70 | Part Three

Volvo C70

Volvo C70

Security

The all new Volvo C70 has also been designed with security in mind, whether the roof is up or down.

Obviously, its retractable hard top offers improved safety compared to other soft-top rivals, while in addition, a new 'Private Locking' function provides valuable extra lockable storage areas beside each seat which are perfect for securing personal items, especially if the car is parked with its roof down.

Every model features an anti-theft alarm including immobiliser and volume sensor as standard, plus Volvo's Home Safe and Approach lighting which will light the headlights for an agreed length of time to illuminate your path from the car, or conveniently turn on the side and interior lights on approaching the car to show it is secure and safe to enter.

Safety

Volvo has developed the all new C70 to be one of the safest convertibles available.

The lack of fixed roof has been compensated for with reinforcements and sophisticated technology, including the world-first of a door mounted inflatable curtain that inflates upwards (instead of being released from the roof as in the rest of the Volvo range). The curtain has an extra stiff construction with double rows of slats to help them remain upright to provide effective head protection, even if the window is down, and deflates slowly in case the car has rolled over during the accident.

In case the car does roll over, the all new Volvo C70 has strong A-pillars hydro-formed in extra strength steel designed to withstand very high forces and also run all the way down to the body sills. To compensate for the lack of permanent B and C-pillars, Volvo has further developed its ROPS (Roll Over Protection System) from the system introduced in the previous generation Volvo C70 convertible. The powerful metal bars that pop up behind the rear seats have been strengthened and react quicker.

Volvo's SIPS (Side Impact Protection System) has also been developed further to compensate for the lack of the usual B-pillar and roof structure that would usually help to absorb any side impact. Instead, engineers at the Volvo Safety Centre have designed five powerful transverse floor members along the car which interact with a system of other reinforcements to channel the impact forces forwards, backwards and downwards to keep the passenger compartment as intact as possible.

The doors are reinforced with a diagonally mounted steel profile to help prevent intrusions into the passenger compartment, while transverse members at the front together with a horseshoe-shaped member behind the rear seats channel forces to opposite sides of the car. Finally, a patented front structure is divided into zones using different strength steel to provide controlled deformation.

The rounded front shape of the car helps reduce the risk of injury to other road users and pedestrians, while the front area around the grille has a soft, energy-absorbing structure to counteract the risk of leg injuries, and the bonnet and front wings are designed to absorb energy and contribute to reducing other injuries.

The all new Volvo C70 also provides effective protection in the event of rear-end collisions. Apart from Volvo's WHIPS (Whiplash Protection System) in the front seats that helps reduce whiplash injuries by moving the seat with the occupant to absorb the forces during the impact, Volvo has also designed rear longitudinal members that deform in a controlled way and are linked to the body sills to distribute forces forwards around the car. The ROPS bars are also pushed upwards during a rear impact to protect any rear passengers from any flying objects from the vehicle behind.

Volvo also has important safety features to help prevent accidents happening in the first place, including DSTC (Dynamic Stability and Traction Control) and ABS brakes with electronic brakeforce distribution and automatic emergency brake assistance (EBA) to maximise the all new Volvo C70's stopping power. Also, IDIS (Intelligent Driver Information System) constantly monitors certain functions within the car, such as steering wheel movement, acceleration, indicators and braking, and at a certain level of activity the system holds back any information that is not crucial to safety (eg. incoming telephone calls if fitted with an integrated phone) so the driver is not unnecessarily distracted, and held until a safer moment.

Published 13 September 2005 Melanie Carter

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