History of the airbags standard in every car nowadays


Posted by: Oluwaseun Adeniji

Share this post:
Airbags have saved lives of million during car crashes. Have you ever wondered how people came up with the idea of inventing such things? Check out the history of the airbags now!!!

1. Functions of the airbags

Airbags are crucial safety parts found in virtually all vehicles. Similar to the seatbelts, their job is to aid the driver’s safety and other occupants of the car during any possible collusion. Occupants of the vehicles are restrained by them from being thrown out of the vehicle or hitting their chest against the steering wheels or dashboard during impacts.

Airbags are usually cushioning, which are inflated by gas, built into the steering wheel, door, dashboard, roof or the car’s seat.

In any occurrence of impact or collision, these airbags are automatically through the crash sensor, inflated in protecting you from a collision or crash.

2. History of the airbags

Below are significant milestones in the history of the airbags!

  • The America Allen Breed, in 1968 came up with the “sensor and safety system” invention. This became the first electromechanical airbag system for automobiles in the world. The patent was held by Allen Breed for the single available crash sensing technology at the beginning of airbag production. However, the idea of airbag system started much earlier than that.
  • Walter Linderer, a German with an American, John Hedrick, in 1951 submitted an application for airbag’s rudimental patent.

>>> There are up to 9 types of car light, what? Check yourself! 9 types of car lights and their functions


The airbags shield you and other occupants from fatalities from possible collision or crash while driving

  • The “safety cushion assembly for automatic vehicles”, which was a patent was collected by John Hetrick in 1953.
  • The airbag by Walter Linderer was based on a compressed air system, which would be released by the driver or via bumper contact. He got a German patent for this innovation. However, in the 1960s, research showed the incapability of the compressed air to blow up the bags fast enough.
  • The Ford car company in 1971 created an experimental fleet of airbags.
  • General Motors exposed the airbags to test in 1973 for the Chevrolet model the same year, which was only sold for government purpose.
  • Oldsmobile Tornado in 1973 became the first car with an equipped airbag for passenger, intended for public sale.
  • General Motors from the period of 1975 and 1976 offered a driver side airbags as an option to the public in full-sized Buicks and Oldsmobile respectively. Driver and passengers’ airbags were made available for Cadillac in the same period.

>>> Let's take a look at our future: 5 different levels of autonomy in autonomous cars

VideoAirbags - Toyota Crash Tests

  • There were design issues with the earlier airbag systems, which led to multiples fatalities caused by those airbags.
  • It was once again offered as an option on the Ford Tempo Automobile for the 1984 model year.
  • Chrysler emerged in 1988 as the first car to equip airbag restraint system in its products as standard equipment.
  • Production of the first gas-inflated airbag was started by the TRW in 1994. This restraint system became a must for all cars since 1998.

>>> News about autos and mind-blowing car facts can be found here on Naijauto.com!

Share this post:
Oluwaseun Adeniji

Oluwaseun Adeniji

New releases

Oluwaseun Adeniji is a passionate writer and a poet with special interest in writing about cars. He is a master degree holder in international conflict and management. He enjoys feeding the public with the latest auto gist and well researched car reviews. He is also a strong football lover. So, if Oluwaseun is not writing, expect him to be reading about sports.


Related Articles

See more
Covid 19