This is one of the original crash test videos for the Pontiac Fiero. In this video, dummies were restrained with the factory seatbelts.
"Fieros are deathtraps!" Not hardly......
Many people think that the Pontiac Fiero is an unsafe vehicle due to its small size. It turns out that the Fiero was the safest vehicle ever tested by the NHTSA without airbags. It was the second safest vehicle on the road in 1985, second to the Volvo DL Wagon. The DL had airbags. Even by today's standards, the Fiero still rivals many newer vehicles on the road today.
The methods of testing are exactly the same in 2010 as they were back in 1979 when NHTSA began testing cars. Cars are tested by impacting a solid barrier at 35 MPH.
The Fiero received a 5 star crash rating for both driver and passenger. A 5-star rating means a 10% or lower chance of serious injury. So 5-star means the same now as it meant 25 years ago.
Here are a few comparisons:
1984 Pontiac Fiero
Head Injury Criterion: 356.5/308.6
Chest Deceleration (G): 30.9/29.9
Femur Load 840/800 800/740
2003 Cadillac Deville
Head Injury Criterion: 826/507
Chest Deceleration (G): 75/58
Femur Load: 825/1297 875/848
2007 Buick Lacrosse
Head Injury Criterion: 374/259
Chest Deceleration (G): 43/42
Femur Load: 1099/1112 909/405
2009 Ford Focus
Head Injury Criterion: 521/389
Chest Deceleration (G): 40/40
Femur Load: 1133/1652 1138/968
As you can see, the 1980s Pontiac is still one of the safer cars on the road today. The Fiero is as good as or better than many of today's vehicles that have airbags.
The Fiero is also very stable. The Fiero received a Static Stability Factor, or Rollover Resistance rating, of 1.47. This equates to a 5-star rollover rating.
Even if you are unfortunate enough to get into a rollover accident, the Fiero excels in safety once again with its incredibly strong roof structure. According to the NHTSA, the Fiero was tested by inverted drop and roof crush testing. In the inverted drop test, the Fiero, along with cars like the Ford F150 and Plymouth Laser were turned over and dropped on their roofs. The Fiero scored best with 8.3 cm crush on the a-pillar and 3.8 cm on the B-pillar. The Ford F-150 had the worst rating with 42.5cm crush on a-pillar and 40.6cm on the B-pillar. The Plymouth Laser actually had a slightly better rating than Fiero for B pillar with 3.2cm crush.
In another publication, NHTSA tested cars roofs by crushing them with a steel plate and hydraulic ram. In the example given, the Chevrolet S10 had the worst rating with 5320 lbs roof strength, while the Fiero has the highest rating with 9909 lbs of roof strength. This equates to 3.53 roof strength to weight ratio, complying with even the most recent roof strength requirement of 3.00:1 strength ratio. It is kind of funny how the Pontiac Fiero is still meeting many of the most modern crash test requirements without even frontal airbags.....
Now for Death rate. Death rate is a number given to cars to reflect the likelihood of death in any particular vehicle. The Fiero, along with Camaros and Firebirds, happen to have a very high death rate. A high death rate doesn't mean the car is unsafe, it just means that this type of car is going to be driven faster and more recklessly, increasing the chance of an accident, which in turn, increases the chance of serious injury or death. If you hit a concrete wall at 80MPH with no seatbelts on, I don't care what car you are in, you will be killed. The human body just simply cannot take that kind of G load and people need to stop driving like idiots. Please comment. I would like to see your reaction to this and hear some of your crash stories. Please drive responsibly.
Video courtesy of NHTSA, NCAP and Calspan Crash Testing Center.
Other vehicle data from http://www.safercar.gov
Fiero crash test data from http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/database/aspx/vehdb/queryvehicle.aspx
Fiero frontal crush data from http://www.nhtsa.org/DOT/NHTSA/NRD/Multimedia/PDFs/Crashworthiness/Air%20Bags/FMVSS_208_II.pdf
Fiero Static Stability Factor data from http://www.nhtsa.gov/cars/rules/regrev/evaluate/809868/images/SSFTrend%20final.pdf
Fiero Death rate data from http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/809004.PDF
Fiero Roof Crush data from http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/pdf/esv/esv19/05-0146-W.pdf and http://www.infrastructure.gov.au/roads/safety/publications/1998/pdf/Roof_Crush.pdf.
http://www.safecarguide.com/mak/pontiac/idx.htm http://home.xnet.com/~paulv/techtips.htm#FIERO SAFETY http://members.fortunecity.com/lowkey88/crashtest.htm http://members.fortunecity.com/lowkey88/crashtest2.htm
Smokey Yunick 51 mpg Fiero
http://www.legendarycollectorcars.com This Fiero was modified by Smokey
Yunick and gets 51 mpg while going 0 to 60 in 5 sec. Why wasn't it ever put
into production? see more at www.legendarycollectorcars.com
Pontiac Fiero NHTSA Frontal Crash Test WITHOUT Seatbelts
This is another crash test video for the Pontiac Fiero. In this test, the
occupants are NOT wearing seatbelts. This goes to show how deadly even the
safest cars can be when the occupants are not wearing seatbelts.
This was tested at 29.7 MPH into a solid Barrier. The driver would have a
fair chance of surviving, but would have broken ribs and sternum. The
passenger would have a broken neck from its head going through the
The Fiero received a 5 star crash rating for both driver and passenger. A
5-star rating means a 10% or lower chance of serious injury. So 5-star
means the same now as it meant 25 years ago.
Head Injury Criterion: 356.5/308.6
Chest Deceleration (G): 30.9/29.9
Femur Load 840/800 800/740
Head Injury Criterion: 870.5/552
Chest Deceleration (G): 62.6/90.6
Femur Load 1113/1170 1056/1067
So as you can see, by not wearing your seatbelt, the crash test rating of
this car goes from 5 stars to only 2 stars. Thats going from less than 10%
of serious injury to 36-40% chance of serious injury!!!!!
Before you comment, realize this test is WITHOUT SEATBELTS.
Even a safe car like the Fiero cannot protect you if you dont WEAR YOUR
Motor Week - Pontiac Fiero
amerikanische Fernsehsendung von 1994 Motorweek in der der Fiero
vorgestellt und mit dem MR2 verglichen wurde.
88 Fiero GT AT Test Drive to 100 MPH
This is a slow run up to 100 mph in an 88 stock 2.8 liter V6 Fiero GT to
test its automatic transmission and stability after recent repair and brake
mods.The car shifts very quickly for an AT even though I did not push it
very hard with this test drive just in case anything decided to let loose.
This was not an acceleration test or max speed test... Stock Fiero's
are just not that fast to get all excited about but still a lot of fun to
drive if they can be made reliable.
My '84 Fiero (Bought It New, Had It Ever Since)
Its on-again, off-again development took 6 years before it finally saw the
light of day. Like almost every inexpensive sports car through history, it
used numerous components from high-volume production cars to keep costs
Pontiac's crack marketing department predicted total sales of 60,000 that
first year. Imagine their surprise when 30,000 people placed orders for the
car sight unseen. By the time of its official introduction in September of
1983, there was a six-month waiting list. By model-year's end, 136,840
Fieros had flowed out the doors of its Pontiac, MI assembly plant, a record
for any mid-engined car.
It was chosen as the Pace Car for the Indianapolis 500 that year, powered
by a Pontiac 2.7L Super Duty 4 making 232 h.p. The 2000 Pace Car replicas
sold to the public had the standard 92 h.p. Iron Duke 4.
Its Enduraflex body panels, bolted to a driveable space frame, never dented
and never rusted. The lower door and fender panels would even bounce back
from minor impacts. What GM learned about these body panels with the Fiero
was applied to its first-generation minivans and its Saturn line of small
This one was my first, and only new car. 29 years (as of April 9, 2013),
165,000 miles, (27,000 miles on this engine), two owners (for the first
four years, the bank owned it. LOL). I ordered it in October 1983 from
Townsend Pontiac in Merrillville, IN; it finally came in April 1984.
Mine is a Sport Coupe (the middle model), red with a gray interior and
alloy wheels, and looks exactly like the Fieros Pontiac used in their print
and TV advertising in '84. For this model year only, the engine cover
grille was cast magnesium. The rear trunk held 5 upright sacks of
groceries, the front compartment two more. (You listening, Solstice?)
It went 50,000 miles the first 3 years, thanks to a long daily commute; it
took eight years to go the next 50,000. It took another 14 years after that
to get to 140,000+ miles. Not that it had an easy life, being a daily
driver in Chicago winters, where they throw salt on the street if a snow
cloud passes overhead (notice I didn't say it actually had to snow.)
It's a 30-footer; from that distance, it could pass for new. As you get
closer, you notice the stone chips, the clearcoat peeling off the wheels,
the ripped driver's seat, and the swirl marks in the paint. But then, if
any of you look like you did 26 years ago, raise your hands. Those of you
who weren't even born 26 years ago can recuse yourselves.
It's on its second hood medallion; the first and only time I left the car
parked outside my house overnight in 1987, someone tried to pry the first
one off, and nearly succeeded. This is its second clutch and its second set
of headlight motors, and its third set of tires (Eagle GT2's -- Goodyear no
longer makes 215/60R14 tires, so my next set will have to be BF Goodrich).
The old Iron Duke had to be replaced at 138,500 miles; with the new Duke,
rebuilt by ATK, it's even faster
than it was when new. The 4-speed has gone all the way
Other than that, it's original and bone stock, an increasing rare commodity
in the Fiero world of turbo-V6 and
small-block V8 engine swaps and one-off wheels, bodies and colors.
The only real problem I've had with this car is crappy repairs by
mechanics, both dealer and independent, who shouldn't have been allowed to
change a trunk light by themselves.
The Recall was the worst. The mechanics at my friendly local Pontiac dealer
would loosen parts to get to other parts and forget to tighten them back,
causing a noticeable rattle (hardly the car's fault) and refused to take
responsibility for their shoddy work; I ended up tightening those parts
After 16 years of these kinds of repairs, through my local Fiero club,
Northern Illinois Fiero Enthusiasts, I finally found a dealer mechanic,
Dave Armstrong, who knew what the hell he was doing; he's the reason my car
is still on the road. I found out from him that even when Fieros were still
being made, it was OPTIONAL for Pontiac mechanics to be trained to work on
them. If you brought your Fiero in for service, it was strictly luck
whether you got a qualified technician (like Dave)or a clueless hack.
A possible consequence of getting a dealer hack, going to an independent
mechanic or doing a backyard DIY repair? If the Fiero's cooling system was
not flushed and refilled according to a specific procedure (clearly
outlined in the owner's manual and, I would imagine, the dealer shop
manual), the car ended up with HALF the antifreeze/coolant it was designed
to hold. And there were engine fires? Gee, I wonder why.
Dave was the go-to Fiero guru at Jacobs Twin Pontiac in Chicago; now he's
got his own garage near Harlem and Irving Park, doing a land-office
business. It couldn't happen to a more deserving guy. He'll get your Fiero
(or any other GM car) running right.
Contact him at 773-282-1444.
Bendle & MacKenzie Pontiac Fiero Rocky Mountain Rally May 1991
Bendle & MacKenzie Pontiac Fiero Rocky Mountain Rally May 1991. Quite
possibly the most outrageous Pontiac Fiero rally car around. With Time
Bendle piloting and Art MacKenzie navigating, they were never boring. Plus
a couple of clips of rather rare Toyota Celica 4WD and a Mazda 323 AWD.
My 1985 Pontiac Fiero
Comment any ideas that you have for my car or future videos and any info
that you think that i would like.
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