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Old 03-29-2013, 09:51 PM
 
1,288 posts, read 2,762,585 times
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I had an old car back in the early 90s and it had automatic seatbelt, and I love it. Most cars today don't have it. Why?
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:03 PM
 
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They were outlawed but I am not sure why.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:03 PM
 
Location: Prosper
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One reason is that it gets in the way of side curtain airbags, another was the lack of adjustability on most cars that had it, it rarely fit people the way it was intended to if you were too tall or too short, which could lead to injury.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:11 PM
 
1,288 posts, read 2,762,585 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MckinneyOwnr View Post
One reason is that it gets in the way of side curtain airbags, another was the lack of adjustability on most cars that had it, it rarely fit people the way it was intended to if you were too tall or too short, which could lead to injury.
There is adjustability on manual seatbelt?
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:15 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ
1,070 posts, read 2,767,244 times
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A couple of reasons. As McKinney said, airbags got in the way. Way back in the late 80's / early 90's, the government told auto manufacturers to either install side airbags, or auto seatbelts in their cars. Going the cheap route, they rolled out auto seatbelts. When side airbags became mandatory years later, they ditched the seatbelts.

There was also an issue with selling the vehicles in other countries. Canada, for example, had higher safety regulations than the US at the time -- making cars with auto seatbelts nearly ineligible to import in Canada.

Then there were the safety issues. When the powered part of the belt was attached to the door, if the car got into an accident that forced the door open, the driver / passenger could potentially be ejected. There was also an issue with people not wearing the lap belts (which had to be put on manually). In a collision, without a lap belt, people would actually go UNDER the powered belt, causing further injuries. Lastly, some people got annoyed by the powered belts, and simply unhooked them (using only the lap belt). For obvious reasons, this caused more injuries in the event of a wreck.



With stronger cars, and more airbags, they're an obsolete technology.




EDIT:


Quote:
Originally Posted by Timing2012 View Post
There is adjustability on manual seatbelt?
Most cars with manual seatbelts have the ability to move the shoulder part up or down, adjusting for driver height (though it's not required, so many cheaper cars go without it). With non-adjustable shoulder height seatbelts (or powered seatbelts), short drivers find the belt going across their neck (which is obviously not safe).
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:15 PM
 
Location: California
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It had something to do with the introduction of mandatory airbags.



Oops, sorry cab...we posted at the same time.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:46 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
550 posts, read 1,218,339 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timing2012 View Post
There is adjustability on manual seatbelt?
On most modern cars, yes.
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Old 03-29-2013, 11:03 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
30,450 posts, read 50,689,452 times
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Maybe too many people got 'Strangled' getting in and out of their cars.

I still have a few in my fleet, they are NOT my favorites, and often get passengers (& self) all tangled up / frustrated on how to quickly 'Sit & Git".

Kinda like a 'riding' mower with a safety switch under the seat... ONE more thing to check if it won't fire up... Safety Switches... Argh.... Also for clutches, tranny shift levers, ... just what we need... "Smart Cars" that leave us stranded due to failure of a silly switch.
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Old 03-30-2013, 12:04 AM
 
Location: Northeast Tennessee
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I had a '81 Toyota Cressida (back in the 90s) that had them (one of the first cars I think to have them) as well as my '91 Honda Accord. My grandpas old '90 Mazda 929 also had them, as well as his 1993 Mercury Tracer wagon. Once more cars started getting airbags, they phased them out.

My aunt had a 1995 Mercury Villager that had them (but it also had a driver airbag), so it was a featured at least through 1995 on some vehicles, even with airbags. I don't think any car with dual airbags had them.

I found them to be comfortable, especially on my Accord and the lap belt was all I had to fasten and it was super easy to pull over and buckle.

The motorized belts were a much safer design than the door mounted belts that some cars had (found in many late 80s/early 90s GM cars without airbags), because those would offer no protection if the door was to fly open in a crash. I had a '94 Chevy Lumina with those, they were comfortable though.
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Old 03-30-2013, 01:03 AM
 
Location: White House, TN
6,377 posts, read 5,345,000 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tennesseestorm View Post
I don't think any car with dual airbags had them.
The 1995-1996 Ford Escort / Mercury Tracer was the only exception to that, I believe. Dual airbag and automatic seat belts... but then again, it was a 1991 design that had no airbags from 1991-1993 and just a driver airbag in 1994.
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