The small overlap test is one of the most difficult ones to ace during official crash tests. In fact, there are plenty of modern cars that fail to do a good job with it even today.
When carrying out the test, cars are usually directed towards a rigid barrier, which makes contact with just 25% of the vehicle’s front end, biased toward the driver’s side. It can simulate hitting either another car, a tree or perhaps a utility pole.
Now, while this accident was by no means a test, only a small percentage of that Volvo XC70’s front end made contact with the incoming semi – which is exactly what automakers test for. As for the speed at which the two vehicles made contact, it was roughly 62 km/h (38.5 mph), pretty much the official test speed according to the IIHS.
As you can see, that Volvo stood up exceptionally well to the much more massive semi truck. The front end was almost completely destroyed, which is to be expected as it absorbed the full force of the impact. This allowed the passenger compartment to remain intact and you can see how the A-pillar didn’t even bend, thus protecting the driver and passengers.
While we couldn’t find any EuroNCAP or IIHS crash test results for the Volvo XC70, we presume that it should perform identically to the V70, which indeed secured a full 5-star safety rating for adult occupant protection.
With that in mind, we guess the chances of this XC70’s driver getting another Volvo are high, because this one definitely saved his life.