Light trucks and vans (LTVs) currently account for over one-third of registered U.S. passenger vehicles. Yet, collisions between cars and LTVs account for over one half of all fatalities in light vehicle-to-vehicle crashes. Nearly 60% of all fatalities in light vehicle side impacts occur when the striking vehicle is an LTV. This paper will examine this apparent incompatibility between cars and LTVs in traffic crashes. An analysis of U.S. crash statistics will be presented to explore the aggressivity of LTVs in impacts with cars and identify those design imbalances between the cars and LTVs, e.g., mass, stiffness, and geometry, which lead to these severe crash incompatibilities.
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