Remember those childhood road trips, when your parents separated you and your sibling with a suitcase in the centre rear seat? It may not have stopped you arguing, but it did stop you from hurting eachother.
Well, Toyota has released information on a similar concept - a rear seat centre airbag. It won't stop a crash, but it will prevent the damage.
Claimed as a world first, the airbag deploys from a roof-mounted console in the centre of the second row. In a side-on collision, the airbag is designed to prevent injury from debris and impact between passengers or possessions.
We aren't sure if it compromises a split-folding seating (or how it would even work in a five-seat car), but Toyota is planning to introduce it as a production feature 'in the near future'.
More details as they come to hand...
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE
TOYOTA DEVELOPS WORLD FIRST REAR-SEAT CENTRE AIRBAG
Toyota has developed a world first rear-seat centre airbag to help reduce the severity of passenger injuries in side-on collisions.
The new Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) airbag is fitted in a large, fixed, rear-seat centre console and will feature in particular Toyota models to be released in the near future.
When the vehicle is hit side-on, the airbag deploys from the top of the console to act as a barrier that helps lessen injuries caused by passengers colliding with each other or into the console.
Toyota continues to develop and make available its safety technologies to enable its vehicles to better respond to a wider range of accidents.
Toyota intends to further strengthen its traffic safety initiatives in the future by developing safer vehicles and technologies, participating in the creation of safe traffic environments and implementing traffic safety education activities.