Because of their frequency, reducing car occupant injuries in frontal impacts should be a major priority. For belted occupants, significant increases in protection require improvements to the structural integrity of passenger compartments, which itself demands improved impact energy management. The current frontal impact legislative tests fail to assess a car's ability to cope with certain important impact characteristics commonly seen in accidents. Furthermore, the development of the TRRL Experimental Safety Car ESV 87 has shown that, even with small cars, these requirements can be accommodated as can much higher energy impacts. A new test procedure could be developed which would lead to cars with improved accident impact performance. Such a change can be expected to result in a significant reduction in injuries.