Matt Robinson profile picture Matt Robinson 3 years ago 32
DIY

Can You Hit A Pot Hole Hard Enough To Deploy A Car's Airbags?

YouTube channel Warped Perception repeatedly smashed a naked Mercedes E-Class into pot holes to see if any of the airbags would fire

Remind me later

That sickening bang that shudders through the cabin of your car when you hit a pot hole at speed is one of the worst things a driver can experience. But could you ever hit one hard enough to make an airbag deploy?

That’s the idea of this experiment, which involved repeatedly smashing a naked E-Class into a crater-like holes in the tarmac. The first few runs were actually too fast, the door-less Mercedes merely skipping over the imperfection as a result.

Switching to a series of holes to unsettle the suspension did the trick, and yes, the passenger-side curtain airbag does eventually go bang. Our favourite bit though is seeing the front-left wheel wildly smash back into its arch - there’s something weirdly satisfying about the violence of it.

Can You Hit A Pot Hole Hard Enough To Deploy A Car's Airbags? - DIY

Unsurprisingly, a chunk is eventually knocked out of said wheel during run number four, which also burst the tyre. Dramatic stuff, but we can’t help wonder what this test might be like if repeated with bigger rims on lower profile tyres…