First IIHS crash safety tests for convertibles
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have conducted their first ever crash tests of convertible cars. A selection of ten of the world's best selling convertibles were rated. The Institute rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor based on performance in high-speed front and side crash tests plus evaluations of seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts. The first requirement for a vehicle to become a Top Safety Pick is to earn good ratings in all three Institute tests. A new requirement for 2007 is that the winning vehicles must offer electronic stability control. This addition is based on Institute research indicating that ESC significantly reduces crash risk, especially the risk of fatal single vehicle crashes, by helping drivers maintain control of their vehicles during emergency manoeuvres.
The Saab 9-3 and Volvo C70 earn the Insurance Institute's "Top Safety Pick" award for superior crash protection. The performances of the 9-3 and C70 are impressive," says Institute president Adrian Lund. "These cars combine what convertible buyers should look for if they're shopping with safety in mind. The Saab and Volvo not only provide good protection in high-speed front and side crashes but also have good seat and head restraint designs for protecting against whiplash in rear crashes."
Mercedes Benz McLaren SLR Roadster
Mercedes have officially confirmed that a Roadster version of the McLaren SLR coupe will be going into production. The new car is expected to closely resemble the Vision SLR concept pictured here when it is launched. The first sight of the convertible SLR will most likely be at the Geneva Motor Show in March.
Performance is expected to be similar to the SLR Coupe with a 0-60 mph time of less than four seconds and a top speed of around 200 mph. Prices are yet to be confirmed but delivery dates for the lucky few first owners should be in time to catch the summer of 2007.