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C4 Crash safety

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Tue Jan 26 2010, 06:29am
I've said this a lot already, probably in every thread I've posted in-oops.

I had a big crash at the end of September and I was amazed at the safety of my wonderful "Ziggy"(is it weird to name your car?)

An elderly lady thought stopping on a sliproad on the A66 would be a good idea...

It wasn't- to avoid smashing straight into her, I steered away as quickly as I could,

Next thing, My front left wing -slightly in front of the wheelarch hits the back/right of her car

It's on a slope, with my car steering away from hers- bad combination

We roll 180 degrees right onto the roof

The car then rolls forward a little so that the bonnet is touching the ground and the boot is up in the air a little.

it happened near the village of Brough, 6 miles from a police station and about 9 from a firestation.

So, we have to get out unaided. My younger sister is the first to try getting out she's in the back on the driver's side. she unbelts and crawls over to the passenger side door- what do you know, it opened no problem.

Things were slightly more complicated in the front-I didn't much fancy the idea of landing on my neck (so far the seatbelt was doing a wonderful job of keeping me in without cutting/choking. It took a bit of work, cause I couldn't quite reach, but eventually I got the seat recline lever(not a safety feature as such, but if it was a wheel it would have added time to my escape). after the seat was back, I could just lift my head up by leaning back towards the reclined seat and unbuckle my seatbelt. I ended up falling on to my hands and knees-surely better than the neck/spine.

I then simply flattened down and I could crawl out the back. easy escapes considering the circumstances. The problem was, my mum was still in the front-she's disabled and I couldn't expect her to do any actionman stunts. But we kept an eye on her until help arrived, making sure she was conscious and breathing eventually the firebrigade moved her in a way that meant they could get her on a back board.

finally, as I was getting into the ambulance with my mother I saw the car properly, it was quite a shocking site. A really weird thing to see was the distance the wheels were from the body, without the weight of the car pushing down, the springs had stretched out and the wheels were about a foot away from the body.

Incredibly, despite the seriousness of the incident, nobody was seriously hurt. The biggest injury was a cut in my hand from crawling out.

I had always understood the C4 to be a safe car, but thought like most drivers do "it'll never happen to me"

I got some pictures the next day at the body shop(it might have been the day after I can't remember if the lock up was open.

If you look at these pictures, the one showing the rear shows just how incredible the car is 1 and a half tonnes or there abouts and the roofline is no different to in the showroom.

Now I really appreciate how safe and secure my c4 is- my new one feels like a tank inside, I actually feel like I'm armored.

Is it ok to post 5 pictures? I can take them off.
Tue Jan 26 2010, 07:14am

Member No: #2
Joined: Aug 12 2006
Location: Manchester
Looks like it stood up to the impact fairly well.

Couple other guys on here had some pretty serious crashes as well and walked away without any serious injuries. So does say a lot about the safety of the car.

Funnily enough I think everyone of them bought another C4. Been about 4 or 5 on here now.
Tue Jan 26 2010, 07:25am

Member No: #1
Joined: Aug 07 2006
Location: Northumberland
Just shows how well the passenger 'Cell' stands up to an impact and is worth it's EuroNcap 5* rating

Pleased to hear everyone is OK though
Tue Jan 26 2010, 08:43am
Wozza wrote ...

Funnily enough I think everyone of them bought another C4. Been about 4 or 5 on here now.

After just how good it stood up, I wouldn't have considered anything else.

I can see why they would want another C4, as hatchbacks(or in some lucky people's cases coupes) go, nothing else comes close. My old SX did more than a friend's Audi A3, and the VTR+ does more still.

I didn't ever realise this before the crash, but you can tell how strong the c4 hatch roof is by looking at it, it's a great big thick arch, and we've all seen how strong arches are, look at the tyne bridge or old viaducts, they all get their strength from arches. and then there's the thickness of the cell/pillars.
Tue Jan 26 2010, 10:45am

Member No: #82
Joined: Jan 22 2007
Location: Hoylake
We've come a long a way since the DS… Not much in the way of a strong roof there - looks like the A posts are made from old wire coat hangers.

More here: - Click Here -
Tue Jan 26 2010, 11:35am
Wow, I couldn't even tell that was a DS.
Beautiful car though, shame about the safety.
Tue Jan 26 2010, 04:13pm
Member No: #6006
Joined: Nov 01 2008
Location: Walsall
Nice chrome towball
Wed Jan 27 2010, 02:59am
What a keen eye for detail you hav. I wouldn't have caught that- looks like the Towball is the most intact piece.
Wed Jan 27 2010, 06:46am
Member No: #10336
Joined: Jul 15 2009
Location: Acocks Green, Birmingham, UK
To detract from it's strength it was also probably composed of 75 % rust. That's if my old DS was anything to go by
Wed Dec 22 2010, 04:32am
Member No: #8111
Joined: Mar 07 2009
Location: South Bemfleet
I crashed my 1.4 vts coupe (06) on M25 last Sunday. Car written off, got over 4k for it though. Airbags and seat belt pretensioners worked well, see in member galleries for pics. They are seriously strong, Neither of us were hurt, and yes, I have just bought an 07 1.6 hatch, not as sweet as my coupe though, but still I hope cheap to run

Wed Dec 22 2010, 04:51am

Member No: #1
Joined: Aug 07 2006
Location: Northumberland
Ouch, shame your first post is about a written off C4, but it does show how strong modern cars are.

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