In this day and age, even econoboxes come with a suite of airbags, seatbelts, ESP - but the most important advancement is high-strength steel, pioneered by Mercedes and Volvo - stronger but not as heavy as regular steel. Audi started using aluminum for unibodies in the 1990s. Newer cars might crush like soda cans in a crash but the passengers inside have a much better chance of walking away alive than getting a one-way trip to the morgue. It's when a smaller car collides with a bigger car/SUV/brodozer is when there's a problem. I'll leave this here: /edit - not all luxury car tech trickles down to the hoi polloi immediately - but it does eventually. A Fit/Yaris might benefit from Acura/Lexus trickledown when it comes to safety advancements but an Accent/Versa might not since Hyundai and Nissan are too focused on cost cutting.
Originally Posted By: VNTS
also, increase fuel economy reduces vehcihle safety, that is something the Obama admin didnt want to mention.