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Old 9th May 2011, 22:15   #1
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Default Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards?

Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards?

This question has been for quiet a while in my mind.

Can we have a modern E class with all the benefits of modern design with an exterior that resembles the W124.
Ditto for the S class to the W140.

Of course these are just examples, the question is will they work?
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Old 9th May 2011, 23:33   #2
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Default Re: Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards

^^^
You mean you want the bodyshell design to look the same with more modern running gear and safety-related components? Something like the evolution of the Beetle?
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Old 10th May 2011, 08:03   #3
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Default Re: Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards

Yes....but not a curvy design like the beetle. I mean boxy designs like the Mustangs.
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Old 10th May 2011, 08:24   #4
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Default Re: Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards

At first I thought Thar, then you say modern safety standards, that disqualifies it. Same goes for Amby.

But there is a concept called retro design/style cars. Once such car I can think of is Chrysler PT Cruiser. That too is curvy, can't think of a boxy design retro car though.

What you are asking is not impossible, but is a huge risk from the manufacturer's POV. The new beetle clicked, but not so sure about the PT Cruiser.
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Old 10th May 2011, 08:33   #5
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Default Re: Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards

I think it is possible. Not by manufacturers though, but by independent builders. Like for example, some time back, there was a Top Gear feature on some firm in the UK that rebuilds Jaguar XJ-S's to modern standards, i.e. puts in modern electricals, running components, sometimes even whole new engines, steering racks, suspension and interiors. But at a hefty price.

I wouldn't mind something like this for a Contessa or any other car like the W123, W124, W140, and even the Fintail Mercs. It would be good if someone in India did this.
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Old 10th May 2011, 08:33   #6
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Default Re: Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards

I don't think the shape of the body has anything to do with it. There are a few modern cars out there that are boxy and yet I assume pretty safe like the Nissan Cube. I don't think things like crumple zones can be engineered into existing designs. I think cars liek the S class were already ahead of their time when it came to safety and so already had systems like ABS and Airbags already installed. Is it impossible to retrofit airbags into an older car if the steering wheel is changed? ABS?

Last edited by khanak : 10th May 2011 at 08:37.
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Old 11th May 2011, 18:47   #7
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Default Re: Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards

No global-level mass manufacturer will sell a contemporary car in an ol' body shell. From purely the marketing point of view, a new car had better look new, else the world markets will reject it. And what's the point anyways?

Hats off to Porsche though. They've managed to retain the classic design lines & aura of the original 911, yet their 2011 car looks as contemporary as any other sportscar.

BTW, I'm pretty sure the W124 would clear all current safety norms, save for pedestrian crash safety. There are many lesser cars on sale in Europe & Japan.
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Old 13th May 2011, 09:55   #8
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Default Re: Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards

My bad, can't believe I left the best example out!

@ Petroguzzler : Here's exactly the car you are talking about. Old school design, and one that meets every safety standard today. The Mercedes G55

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Old 14th May 2011, 18:11   #9
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Default Re: Can old school designs (not chassis) be made according to modern safety standards

^^^^^^
Thats it.

Now, how nice would it be to have the next S class resembling the W140.
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