Volvo’s timeless beauty, the Amazon, was introduced to the world for the first time 60 years ago. Named after the female warriors in Greek mythology, it is still one of the most iconic models in Volvo’s history.
Few people have saved as many lives as Nils Bohlin - the Volvo engineer who in 1959 invented the V-type three-point safety belt. A design as obvious as it was intelligent, perfectly suited to the seat occupant's body. To this very day, the safety belt still provides the most effective protection in the event of an accident.
Many people believe the three-point safety belt has not changed over the past forty years. They are right. And wrong. The belt's ingeniously simple basic design is the same. The difference today is that the belt is part of a high-tech safety system under constant development.
On Thursday August 13, 1959, the world's first car with standard-fit three-point safety belts - a Volvo PV544 - was delivered to the Volvo dealer in the Swedish town of Kristianstad. Over the next 50 years, the V-shaped three-point safety belt saved well over one million lives.
His Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent has awarded Volvo Cars a special international award(1) to mark the 50th Anniversary of the invention of the three-point safety belt and in acknowledgement of the company's vision to design cars that should not crash.
In 1956, a prototype of a new passenger car from Volvo was presented. The car became known as the Amazon in Sweden and the 121 and 122S on the export markets. The designation 122S was used for a version with a more powerful engine.