Why New Cars are Safer than Old Cars

Why New Cars are Safer than Old Cars


Rev up your engines,
today I’m going to explain why almost no modern cars have solid frames that their built upon,
now originally, cars had solid steel frames that were either bolted or welded together,
then the body of the car bolted onto the frame, this way of making cars was called body on
frame, there way a seperate frame that the body was bolted to,
but almost all cars today have what’s called unibody construction,
where the body and the frame is all one part there is no seperate frame,
now this isn’t a new design, in 1915 the ruler motor company of Illinois made a unibody car,
it was called the ruler famous, but most cars back then they had solid frames and the bodies
were bolted on the frames, there were two main reasons for that, first
if you have a solid steel frame, the vehicle is much more resistant to bending forces when
it either has heavy loads or is taking hard turns,
the frames would keep things from twisting, today big trucks like f150s they still have
solid steel frames, actual frames, and the second reason is this, even back in
the day, people wanted different styles of cars, they were always changing the styles
and they found that if they made a solid frame they can bolt any body style on top of it,
so if they change the model, they can keep the same frame and just change the body work
and just bolt the body work on, even in modern times I was reading about the
hydrogen cars, and people were saying, oh well people aren’t going to buy hydrogen cars
because they cost too much money to make and people don’t want to spend that much money
on a car, they’ll get bored with how it looks, well one of the ideas with the hydrogen car
is, build them on solid frames, then they can change the body work anytime they want
so, hey if you’re paying $100,000 for a car, you could drive it for 30 years just whenever
you wanted, you could put different body panels on it to make it look differently,
so a vehicle with actual frames, body on frame construction have some big advantages, but
they also have disadvantages, it costs more money to make if you’ve look
at any full size pickups you’ll see what I’m talking about some of those things are over
$50,000, and the steel frame with the body bolted on,
the weigh more, so their going to get worse gas mileage and gas mileage is a big thing
these days, so being cheaper to make and weighing less,
unibody construction has taken over the vast majority of vehicles these days other than
large trucks, hey in 1984 the jeep was the first suv type
vehicle made that didn’t have a big frame on it anymore, it was unibody too, even back
in 1984, and in 1994 the toyota rav4 was the first
real mass produced suv or crossover vehicle that didn’t have a frame on it that was all
unibody construction, now almost all of them are unibody construction,
now unibody construction does have it’s benefits, it’s cheaper to make, lighter weight so it
gets better gas mileage, and here’s a strange fact, unibody construction
is actually safer for you although it’s less safe for the vehicle itself,
since it’s a lighter construction method it crumple zones are everywhere, you get in a
wreck all that energy has to go somewhere, if that energy goes to crumple all the pieces
of the car in, it can get rid of more of the energy so you don’t get smashed around as
much, on a solid frame vehicle, that frame is tough
it’s going to resist being crumpled so that power has to go somewhere and it will go to
pushing you around inside the car, or making you hit the windshield,
so unibody cars are safer, they do much better in those crash tests, when you see those crash
test dummy tests that they have, hey you’ll see the car all crumpled up with
the unibody the frame ones won’t do that, I’ve seen that personally when my kids were
on a school bus one time that got in a wreck, so I went to get them and there’s the school
bus you could barely tell anything had happened to the school bus but it had run into a suv
and the suv was totally crumpled in it was destroyed,
so the school bus hey it was saved and the kids were ok too because they weren’t going
all that fast and being that high up in the air and since the school bus has the vast
amount of energy it’s putting it’s energy going to the suv and the suv energy didn’t
do much to the bus, but the passenger in the suv they were all
ok, even though their car was destroyed and was totaled,
and as I said the frames are more resistant to any type of twisting effects when you’re
carrying loads or cornering hard, but engineers have figured ways to make the
unibody constructions handle good, as you can see on this lexus, it’s got a bar
the whole way across the front that keeps it from getting body twisting when you corner
hard, there’s ways to make them ride good,
of course they can’t handle big weight like a big f150 truck which still has a solid steel
frame around, but hey your not carrying rocks around in your lexus,
a lot of old timers they say, hey I want a car with a solid frame and this and that,
but really with the comfort and drive of the unibody construction plus the ability to save
people in crashes and get better gas mileage, their not going to come back with body on
frames anytime soon, and if you really think about it, if you get
in a big wreck, what would you rather have survive, yourself or your car, and since this
is the thursday segment where I answer a viewers question, place your own question on the YouTube
comments below and I’ll pick the best ones to make a single video to answer your questions,
and where else can you find a guy with 50 years of experience of fixing cars to answer
your own question with a video, so if you never want to miss another one of
my new car repair videos, remember to ring that bell!