PARIS - Renault will introduce a new generation of airbags, developed jointly with Autoliv, starting with the Megane at the end of the year. Other models will recieve it in 1998.
A new, 'pressure-monitoring' airbag has been developed in co-operation with Autoliv.
It is designed to work with the latest seatbelt systems, which use a load limiter to prevent too much pressure on the thorax in an emergency stop or collision.
'The problem was to rethink the airbag and the seatbelt together as a whole,' said Christian Steyer, head of Renault's safety department.
The new airbag is folded in such a way that it spreads out as it inflates. This puts it in contact with more of the passenger's body, and reduces pressure. The bag's gas supply can also be automatically varied, to reduce the risk of injury.
Autoliv will manufacture 70 percent of the new airbags for Renault. The remainder are likely to be supplied by TRW.