Go Back   EcoModder Forum > EcoModding > EcoModding Central
Register Now
 Register Now
 

Reply  Post New Thread
 
Submit Tools LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 07-03-2008, 07:20 AM   #1 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 52
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
NPR Cartalk - Suziki Swift deathtrap

Well it was interesting to hear this weeks CARTALK radio show on NPR. One of the callers mentioned a Suziki Swift. So the announcers CLICK & CLACK got all on his case (all subtle of course)about how unsafe the vehicle is; as their is barely anything to the constructed weight of this machine. The owner of the vehicle did mention getting 50MPG most days.

Does anyone know what a 1993 Suziki Swift was rated at for crash protection? I know it does not have an air-bag. What about later years of Geo Metros and their rated crash protection?

I suppose it is one step up for crash protection than driving a motorcycle (which I am sure some have thought about using to save gas).

  Reply With Quote
Alt Today
Popular topics

Other popular topics in this forum...

   
Old 07-03-2008, 10:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Ryland's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Western Wisconsin
Posts: 3,904

honda cb125 - '74 Honda CB 125 S1
90 day: 79.71 mpg (US)

green wedge - '81 Commuter Vehicles Inc. Commuti-Car

Blue VX - '93 Honda Civic VX
Thanks: 867
Thanked 433 Times in 353 Posts
That show tends to hate all older cars and tell people that anything without air bags is a death trap, I had my non air bag '84 civic totaled and was annoyed because it had to be towed and I was left hitching a ride home but was fine, I have a friend who was in a car acedent and would have been fine if he didn't have an air bag but instead the air bag broke his jaw and left him in the hospital for a few days and out of work for over a month.
From what I've read in books like The Death Of The Automobile (great book, very well researched) air bags are designed to work in those times that you are not wearing your seat belt, wear your seat belt in a non air bag vehicle and you will be fine.

Last edited by Ryland; 07-08-2008 at 12:57 AM..
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 10:16 AM   #3 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Auburn, NH
Posts: 451

Wicked Wanda - '99 VW Beetle GLS
90 day: 29.59 mpg (US)

Green Monster - '99 Ford Explorer Sport
90 day: 16.73 mpg (US)

Dad's Taxi - '99 Honda Odyssey EX
90 day: 24.23 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryland View Post
Thy tend to hate all older cars and tell people that anything without air bags is a death trap, I had my non air bag '84 civic totaled and was annoyed because it had to be towed and I was left hitching a ride home, have another friend who was in a car acedent and would have been fine if he didn't have an air bag but instead the air bag broke his jaw and left him in the hospital for a few days and out of work for over a month.
from what I've read air bags are designed to work for those times that you are not wearing your seat belt, wear your seat belt in a non air bag vehicle and you will be fine.
You've got it a bit backwards. Airbags are designed to be used WITH a BELTED driver/passenger. Most airbag related injuries occur with unbelted people. Newer cars use sensors in the seat and buckle receivers to adjust the rate of airbag inflation to match body wieght and if the person is buckled, but early airbag cars don't have these safeguards.

Regardless of airbags, people need to be buckled up.
__________________
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 10:43 AM   #4 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
gascort's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Saint Louis, MO
Posts: 548

Gascort RIP - '93 Ford Escort Wagon
90 day: 43.01 mpg (US)

WifesCruze - '11 Chevrolet Cruze LT
90 day: 31.1 mpg (US)
Thanks: 14
Thanked 24 Times in 16 Posts
Airbags are very important to reduce neck /head injuries, but I wouldn't put them as my top safety device. Most important I would say are Seat Belts and Crumple Zones - these two work together, and without one the other serves no purpose. Airbags and headrests being adjusted properly are next and are about equal as far as safety in my book.
That said, Click and Clack do have reason to be suspicious of older cars in general, and the swift. Older cars don't have as well-designed crumple zones. Smaller cars (size / length, not mass) are more dangerous in general because they have less room to crumple. Arguing based on a car's weight is a bad argument IMO; it only matters in vehicle - vehicle crashes (mainly head-on) whereas size and design of crumple zones, seat belts, and air bags work no matter what you hit. If a large vehicle and a small vehicle are in similar accidents with a stationary object (tree, wall, etc..) the vehicle with the better design will win regardless of mass.
__________________
Gasoline, Wind, Solar, Gravity Hybrid-to-be! http://www.scientificmethodfueleconomy.blogspot.com/
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 10:51 AM   #5 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Auburn, NH
Posts: 451

Wicked Wanda - '99 VW Beetle GLS
90 day: 29.59 mpg (US)

Green Monster - '99 Ford Explorer Sport
90 day: 16.73 mpg (US)

Dad's Taxi - '99 Honda Odyssey EX
90 day: 24.23 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Swifts have a frontal impact rating of 3 stars/driver side and 4 stars/passenger side (out of 5).

1995-2001 Metros rate 4 and 4.

No side crash ratings on either model.

Do the math. The vast majority of cars and trucks on the road weigh in at 2 tons+. These cars weigh about 1800 lbs and have limited side impact protection. New side impact regulations in 2002 were a big reason why they were no longer imported to USA. A comparable Toyota Yaris coupe weighs 500 lbs more. Mostly due to safety improvements. You are much safer in a Swift/Metro than on a motorcycle, but newer cars are safer still. How you balance the safety/mpg equation is different for everybody. YMMV.
__________________
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 10:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
dcb
needs more cowbell
 
dcb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location:
Posts: 5,038

pimp mobile - '81 suzuki gs 250 t
90 day: 96.29 mpg (US)

schnitzel - '01 Volkswagen Golf TDI
90 day: 53.56 mpg (US)
Thanks: 158
Thanked 267 Times in 210 Posts
Doesn't mean anyone should use (or repeat) terms like "Death Trap". That's just the absolute meanest form of peer pressure that leads to bigger cars in my opinion. They don't really care about your safety if you drive a small car or bike, they just don't want their concept of what is safe to be challenged.
__________________
WINDMILLS DO NOT WORK THAT WAY!!!
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 11:57 AM   #7 (permalink)
EcoModding Apprentice
 
akcapeco's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Va Beach
Posts: 104

V-strom 650 - '07 Suzuki DL-650 V-strom
90 day: 55.03 mpg (US)

07 Focus ZXW - '07 Ford Focus ZXW SE
90 day: 30.09 mpg (US)
Thanks: 1
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
The 95 onward Swift was redesigned with its North American siblings: the Geo/Chevrolet Metro and the Pontiac Firefly.

I can't imagine that this last generation Swift was that different from a Honda Insight... the side impact standards changed significantly in 1997, the Swift met them... and the Insight was introduced in 1999, with two airbags... like the Swift.

Swift and Metro safety equipment included dual frontal airbags, optional anti-lock brakes, safety cage construction with deformable front and rear crush zones and five structural crossbars engineered to spread side impact loads throughout the car's structure... and DRL's -- the Generation III Metro was the first GM car to offer DRLs.

The chassis was 30% stiffer than Generation II, and at the time of its introduction, it was the smallest car in the world to meet the impending 1997 North American side impact standards.

On another note, the SMART CAR's safety cell is designed to "harvest" crumple from the "other guys" crumple zone. In other words, it has very little crumple zone of its own, but is designed to steal it from whatever it hits.
__________________

  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 12:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
Batman Junior
 
MetroMPG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: 1000 Islands, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 21,763

Blackfly - '98 Geo Metro
Team Metro
Last 3: 70.09 mpg (US)

MPGiata - '90 Mazda Miata
90 day: 53.56 mpg (US)

Winter beater Metro - '00 Chevrolet Metro
90 day: 61.98 mpg (US)

Fancy Metro - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage top spec
90 day: 58.72 mpg (US)

Even Fancier Metro - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage top spec
90 day: 66.29 mpg (US)
Thanks: 3,478
Thanked 6,281 Times in 3,250 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by offroad1994 View Post
Does anyone know what a 1993 Suziki Swift was rated at for crash protection? I know it does not have an air-bag. What about later years of Geo Metros and their rated crash protection?
Have you seen the 3 Metro/Swift crash videos Peakster posted?

http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...ideos-611.html
__________________
Latest mods: 3-cylinder Mitsubishi Mirage. EcoMods now in progress...
Ecodriving test:
Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown



EcoModder
has launched a forum for the efficient new Mitsubishi Mirage
www.MetroMPG.com - fuel efficiency info for Geo Metro owners
www.ForkenSwift.com - electric car conversion on a beer budget
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 12:48 PM   #9 (permalink)
Power tuner gone eco
 
whatthe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Alberta
Posts: 33

Prudence - '93 BMW 325 i
90 day: 36.64 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by gascort View Post
Airbags are very important to reduce neck /head injuries, but I wouldn't put them as my top safety device. Most important I would say are Seat Belts and Crumple Zones - these two work together, and without one the other serves no purpose. Airbags and headrests being adjusted properly are next and are about equal as far as safety in my book.
That said, Click and Clack do have reason to be suspicious of older cars in general, and the swift. Older cars don't have as well-designed crumple zones. Smaller cars (size / length, not mass) are more dangerous in general because they have less room to crumple. Arguing based on a car's weight is a bad argument IMO; it only matters in vehicle - vehicle crashes (mainly head-on) whereas size and design of crumple zones, seat belts, and air bags work no matter what you hit. If a large vehicle and a small vehicle are in similar accidents with a stationary object (tree, wall, etc..) the vehicle with the better design will win regardless of mass.
The Swifts I've seen after low speed accidents seem to crumple fairly well. High speeds seem to equal death from the various forums I've seen. I take the don't get creamed approach to daily driving. Take the ditch over the back end of the car in front of you.

1992 Suzuki Swift Crash Tests & Safety Ratings at InternetAutoGuide.com

Mass is very important. A friend of mine was a forensic engineer in accident reconstruction and went through some of the physics of why a well designed crumpled up Smart car still can't cut it against a large mass vehicle. The light car experiences just most of the acceleration change which those crumple zones are designed to try and spread out over more time to help prevent the small car guys heart from detaching when his body stops from 60-0 instantly and his heart wants to keep going.

Without getting into the math, you can crumple an entire smart car at 60km/h (front to back as they are designed) and still not have had a big enough change in acceleration to set off the air bags off in the 7000lb. F150 that it hit. The better designed vehicle will not always win.

Think train vs. Mercedes... the change in acceleration of the train when it hits that Mercedes is next to nothing.

*edit* just saw the crash videos... 60mph looks like you're missing a few legs. 35mph in the old one seems to crumple in the back which mean energy is being absorbed there as well. I stick to my thought of avoid high-speed collisions.
__________________
1992 - Suzuki Swift GT

Last edited by whatthe; 07-03-2008 at 12:54 PM..
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 12:51 PM   #10 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Ireland
Posts: 33

Baz - '93 Peugeot 106
90 day: 62.39 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by dcb View Post
Doesn't mean anyone should use (or repeat) terms like "Death Trap".
I'm afraid that's the first thing I thought when I saw this buggy:



Maybe an unfair example though.

The seat belt discussion - IIRC, Airbags were invented for a while before they were used, but they essentially came to popularity because in the US apparently, people didn't wear, or didn't like wearing seatbelts. I always thought that was fairly amusing.

__________________


Goal: 3L/100KM
  Reply With Quote
Reply  Post New Thread


Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
The Suzuki Swift is still a super sweet car! SVOboy General Efficiency Discussion 15 11-22-2009 12:17 PM



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.5.2
All content copyright EcoModder.com