Continental equips electrical-powered light truck with occupant safety system

March 14, 2011 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Continental is equipping the electrically powered EcoCarrier light truck with a passive safety system. In this vehicle category airbags are not mandatory. The Continental development brings occupant safety of such vehicles to the same level as passenger cars.

Continental supplies the airbag electronics and adapts the related software to the requirements of the EcoCarrier light truck. The front-seat passenger airbag for the three-seater truck is bigger than the usual car airbag because it is designed for two passengers sitting side by side. Thus, in the case of an accident, both front-seat passengers are protected. Another part of the development work was designing the front-seat passenger airbag deployment flap on the instrument panel.

Through its vehicle safety development centre, Continental provides development and testing processes to meet specific requirements of electric vehicles. In addition to ensuring airbag deployment and testing its ability to cope with extreme sizes of vehicle occupant, another central feature of Continental's development work in Alzenau is investigating the behavior of the EcoCarrier's basic structure.

Together with Volkswagen Sarajevo (Bosnia), EcoCraft Automotive manufactures small, electrically-powered EcoCarrier vans. The light truck generates 15 kilowatt of power, can drive at up to 75 kilometers per hour and has a range of approximately 80 kilometers.