Is This The Greatest Crash Testing Failure Of All Time? Watch A Holden Fold Like An Accordion

Is This The Greatest Crash Testing Failure Of All Time? Watch A Holden Fold Like An Accordion

While new cars are filled with all kinds of bells and whistles and hardcore guys may not necessarily want because they add weight and complexity, there is one undeniable fact about modern automotive engineering and that is the amazing ability that vehicles now have to protect their occupants in the event of a crash. This video shows the testing of a Holden Commodore, or more specifically the Opel model that this generation Commodore was based on. The results of the test are absolutely stunning in every way possible. Other than some of the Chinese car crash testing videos we have seen in the last few years, we’ve never seen an automobile collapse in a more dramatic fashion than this one. It literally folds up like a wet cardboard box.

Everyone in this car would have been reduced to 2D had they been occupants in a wreck at the speeds shown here. Because the video is slow motion, we’re not sure about exactly how fast the little car mashed the wall but even if it were highway speeds we would not have expected this level of badness. We’re guessing that at the time this video was made, crash testing was done as more of a scientific experiment rather than to establish some sort of minimum standards for what was legal to sell to people.

We can hate lots of stuff about the complexity of new cars but we can also respect the hell out of the fact that they will not do THIS when involved in a wreck below hypersonic speeds. This has got to be the greatest crash testing failure of all time –

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12 thoughts on “Is This The Greatest Crash Testing Failure Of All Time? Watch A Holden Fold Like An Accordion

  1. smitthford

    The best part is that YouTube puts an ad for “Certified Chevy Service” at the bottom.

  2. Loren

    Hmm. Watching the rear of the car drop after it went up into the air a bit, then timing how long it took for the tire (probably about the c/g at that point considering the trunk does appear ballasted) to hit the ground, then timing a coin dropping from my hand onto the floor from around the same distance, I’m guessing the first part of the vid is 10x slow motion. Just prior to that it appears that it took .6 seconds for the rear of the car to travel about 50″ in the vid…going by that the actual crash speed works out to 47 mph, not completely out-of-the-park from the stated 62mph in the link above. Even at the faster speed and with the possible ballast consideration, watching the doors lamely pop away as passenger compartment folds up does make a poor show against newer cars such as you’d find here, etc:
    So, although maybe skewed a little I wouldn’t call it “fake” by any stretch. Good to know we’ve made progress, tech such as finite element analysis programs have helped.

  3. Caveman Tony

    I think that the engineers may have skipped the calculations for the whole “crumple zone” deal…. Or went out for a Foster’s instead

    1. sbg

      so how do you calculate the crash forces with 2 tons of concrete in the truck? the first clue that something’s screwy is when something hits that hard – it bows in the quarter panels…. those didn’t move at all

      1. Loren

        Don’t know how you’d calculate, but if for some odd reason you were interested in testing how well a passenger compartment holds up in the somewhat-common real-world crash situation where besides running into something heavy you’re also getting rear-ended by another heavy vehicle, probably sticking that weight of concrete in the trunk would be a valid means. Whether or not the test was for the vehicle or the facility and regardless of the speed, weight or add-ons involved, or exactly what the testers were even trying to find out, it’s a good demonstration of where the weak points are in the structure (such as 90* corners and doors that fly away rather than contribute to crush resistance). I just don’t see the conspiracy here.

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