The Volvo V70 estate has come top for Best Comfort and back support in two surveys - the Driver Power 2006 survey¹ in this week’s Auto Express magazine, and a recent report in The Sunday Times.
The results of these reports make essential reading for the increasing proportion² of people suffering from back pain, especially when driving. Volvo actually obtained the top two positions in the Auto Express Driver Power Survey for Best Comfort, with the V70 achieving the top score of 94.82 per cent closely followed by its S60 saloon in second place with 93.97 per cent.
"If you don’t understand what makes Volvo’s V70 (and S60) more comfortable than any other car, you should try one. If every car was as comfortable as Volvo’s estate, chiropractors across the country would be going out of business!" says Auto Express magazine.
"The cabin is an ergonomic masterpiece. The contours of the seats support your back in all the right places, and there’s enough adjustment on the chair and steering column to suit drivers of all shapes and sizes," it continued.
Similarly, the Volvo V70 received top marks for cabin layout, quality of seating and adjustability of controls in research for The Sunday Times supplement on Driver Health, making it top of the list for the car least likely to put strain on the human body.
"Driving long distances is one of the worst things you can do to your body," commented the osteopath behind the research for The Sunday Times, Bryan McIlwraith. He added: "There’s a tendency for you to be forced into a slumped position, so your back is bent putting pressure on the hips, lower back and intervertebral discs."
"For any driver spending long hours driving, a well-positioned, comfortable seat is a necessity to avoid back or neck pain, or undue tiredness," said Ingrid Skogsmo from the Volvo Safety Centre. "Volvo seats are designed using a combination of technology and ergonomics to give drivers optimum comfort, positioning and safety," she continued.
Choosing the right vehicle is clearly the first step to sitting comfortably when driving. You should be able to reach the pedals and controls without stretching. Volvo’s ergonomics experts have ensured seats and steering wheels are fully adjustable with lumbar supports and have fixed headrests to ensure they always offer maximum protection to prevent your head being thrown back in an accident.
Volvo’s front seats aren’t just ergonomically designed for maximum comfort, but offer the best safety protection, too. They all feature Volvo’s Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS), where the entire backrest moves to help protect the occupant’s neck by absorbing the forces experienced in a rear impact.
Volvo was one of only two manufacturers to have all its seats rated in the best class by The International Insurance Whiplash Prevention Group in its ‘2005 Dynamic Seat Assessments’, and in addition, Volvo Cars’ own real life Accident Research Team shows that WHIPS has halved the risk of long-term neck injuries in rear-end impacts.
‘New-Generation’ front seats were introduced for most Volvo models last year with improved seat adjustability, while new lighter and slimmer controls make it quicker and easier for drivers to position the seat for their personal comfort.Published 25 March 2006