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.
Saving a life can be so simple: grab, stretch, click! If you are wearing a safety belt, your chances of surviving a collision improve by 50 percent. The three-point belt is and will remain the car's most vital safety detail. However, even more lives could be saved if belt usage increased.
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.