Are Crashworthiness and Fuel Economy Necessarily Conflicting Outcomes?

Symmons, Mark & Haworth, Narelle L. (2002) Are Crashworthiness and Fuel Economy Necessarily Conflicting Outcomes? In 2002 Road Safety Research, Education and Policing Conference, 3-5 November, Adelaide, Australia.


It has been demonstrated that larger, heavier cars generally provide more protection for their occupants, although they may be more likely to injure other road users. Smaller, lighter cars generally have better fuel economy.

Some government agencies have programs that encourage consumers to purchase safer cars as measured by crashworthiness ratings; while other government agencies encourage consumers to purchase cars with good fuel economy. Consumer may find these messages contradictory. This analysis compares the Used Car Ratings calculated by Monash University Accident Research Centre with the official fuel consumption figures published by the Australian Greenhouse Office. It demonstrates that while there is a general negative correlation between crashworthiness rating and fuel economy, there is considerable scatter about the line of best fit. Particular makes and models of cars were identified as performing well on both crashworthiness and fuel economy while other makes and models of cars were shown to perform relatively poorly. The limitations of the study relate to the use of official fuel economy figures rather than in-use values and the relative variability of the published fuel economy figures compared to crashworthiness ratings.

Nevertheless, further development of this type of approach of identifying cars that perform well on several dimensions may be useful.

Impact and interest:

Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 10219
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: For more information, please refer to the conference website (see hypertext link) or contact the author.
Additional URLs:
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2002 (please consult authors)
Deposited On: 17 Oct 2007 00:00
Last Modified: 19 May 2010 15:54

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page