This is a long and somewhat complex post, but I think there’s something for everyone in here:

1) Are there ANY statistics out there comparing accident survival rates for the SAME MODEL in both regions (assuming one that is sold in both, of course)? For example, how many people died in a US/Canada market Audi A4, per capita, (and maybe per model sold) vs how many people died in am EU market Audi A4, per capita (and maybe per model sold).

I ask because of the one example I know off the top of my head (although I’m not sure if this was EU-wide, or just Sweden): In the 10+ years the Volvo XC90 was on sale, only 1 person died in one. ONE! He drove straight-on into a tree. Now maybe this isn’t the best example, because Volvo is well-known for safety and may very well add more safety equipment than what’s strictly required, BUT

2) If the US/CAN Volvo XC90 does indeed have more structural reinforcement than the EU one, why? Or to put it another way, why does the European one have less? Is there such a thing as a car design that satisfies both markets’ requirements without anything physical/structural needing to be added? (In other words, anything other than lighting/units of speed and temperature) Or two identical models that weigh roughly the same in both markets?

3) I decided to look up how this works in Israel (In relation to my other topic: ), and I found it rather fascinating that:

Advertisement

a) They follow EU standards

b) Despite that, they allow US/CAN compliant vehicles to be imported.

c) You might be thinking “big deal, every EU country is like that”, but as far as I know, Israel’s regs don’t specifically appear to allow domestic-market vehicles from Asia, which is a bit different.

Advertisement

Israeli import regs (note: This appears to be a page for people doing Aliyah immigration, so there’s a chance this may not be how it works for people who are already Israeli citizens. Someone can correct me if I’m wrong): http://www.nbn.org.il/aliyahpedia/go…

If I had to guess why the Israeli regs don’t include Asian vehicles, I’d say:

China: Safety regulations may be severely lacking at this time https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T8EGbu…

Advertisement

Japan: I’m not sure if their standards meet EU or US/CAN (a helpful Oppo told me they only recently started having crash tests of their own), and I’ve never heard anything about their crash-testing regulatory body. I’ve read on here that when Motorex was working on legalizing the R34 Skyline in the USA, they had to add quite a few strengthening bars to the body. I’ve also read that Japan domestic market cars tend to lack a lot of B-pillar reinforcement, so that can make perpendicular accident testing difficult to pass.

South Korea: I have no clue what their crash regs are like, anyone know? Would a KDM vehicle be measurably different in terms of safety equipment/reinforcement from a US/CAN/EU one?

Indonesia: Perodua is sold in the UK, and they have dealerships, so I’m guessing it passes NCAAP. I’m not aware of them being sold elsewhere in the EU, correct me if I’m wrong.

Advertisement

So in other words, I’m just trying to say that the regulations are not harmonized across Asia, unlike the US and Canada, and unlike the various EU member states.

So this brings me to my final question:

4) Why does/would Israel follow EU regs, but also allow US/CAN ones? Is it because of friendly political ties? Proximity to Europe? Or are US/CAN regs genuinely, truly, better/safer? If not, then why is the opposite not true? (US/CAN allowing EU-certified vehicles to be imported/registered?) And if not, then why does the Alfa 4C weigh so much there?!?! Haha!

Advertisement

I think Oppo knows a lot about how these regs work, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a discussion about the “Whys”, which are always interesting.