I am very interested in the rear facing seats for the model s, however I have spent hours searching for safety to the occupants when during a rear impact to the car. The occupants feet I think are within 1 foot of the ourside of the rear bumper.
There is special boron steel reinforcement behind the bumper. Elon has 5 kids and considers the jump seats the safest place in the car. Remember also that rear impacts are rarer and lower speed than front impacts.
Rear facing seats are generally considered safer than front facing ones. This is why military passenger aircraft traditionally had had the seats facing to the rear.
The big question for the Model S would be whether a rear collision would allow the offending vehicle to penetrate where the kids are.
My understanding is that the rear seats in most mini-vans is in the crumple zone whether they face forward or back. This is because the safety testing worries mainly about the front seats and mini-vans aren't rated as passenger cars.
I'm guessing that your kids are a lot safer in the rear seat of a Model S than about any other vehicle with 3-row seating.
It would be great to get test results on this for various vehicles. I wonder if we could get Consumer Reports to comment?
The initial government safety check for these seats said that they passed and were safer than any other child seating arrangement available in any car; not sure of this wording, but pretty close. On the other hand, don't keep the kids in there for anything other than a short hop or they will "melt"....no a/c vents back there.
What government testing? Where'd you get that info? That's the first I've heard of anyone testing anything related to those seats.
Dvclifford, it is my understanding the there have been no US independant crash tests or government tests as of yet on the Model s.
I also belive there aren't any standrd tests from anyone on rear impacts on any vehicles in the US. Please comment if this is incorrect?
However are the any overseas rear impact tests that have been done on the Model S now that sales are happening abroad?
Most 3rd row SUVs put the kids' heads within 1 feet of the rear of the car. I would think it's much safer to have the feet within 1 feet of the rear in the Model S than the heads.
Ziak, if there were no government safety crash tests on this vehicle, Tesla would not yet have been able to ship it to drivers. Over a year ago, tests were performed and the vehicle passed. In fact, the "roll-over" testing is performed by a machine similar to a trash compactor (they don't actually roll the car over) and the machine broke. I read in a previous post that someone from the Transportation Dept stated that these seats were the safest on the road.