SAFER BY DESIGN
Besides being more durable, cars are massively safer now than they were even 40 years ago, never mind 90. Front and rear crush zones, seatbelts and grippier radial tyres were the first real life-savers, followed by projection-free dashboards, airbags, ABS, ESP and plenty more safeguarding electronics.
Some makers, notably Volvo and Mercedes-benz, adopted safety as a selling tool, but the real impetus in recent decades has been the US crash regulations and Europe’s NCAP tests, which have improved passenger and pedestrian safety enormously. With this has come a penalty, however, in terms of vehicle weight and size, and ironically given the safety implications, reduced driver visibility.