Although the freshened Holden Commodore VF and VE share the same General Motors Zeta vehicle architecture, the two cars are quite different. One of the biggest ways in which the two differ surrounds safety, with the VF carrying the title of being the safest Commodore Holden has ever built. And even though both the VE and VF received five-star crash test ratings from the Australian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP), Holden says that the VF is much safer.
One of the main areas of improvement for the VF over the VE was child safety, with the refreshed Isofix child seat anchors being installed, providing a sturdier way for customers to fasten a child seat into the rear.
In addition, a variety of passive safety features available on the VE Commodore were upgraded for the VF. For instance, side curtain airbags are now standard, along with driver and passenger knee airbags. An improved seatbelt pretension system with “load limiters” moderates how much force is put on the occupant in the event of a crash.
The VF also has an array of active safety features designed to prevent a crash from happening altogether. These include the availability of reverse traffic alert that’s designed to prevent drivers from pulling out into moving traffic, along with forward collision alert, blind spot alert, and lane departure warning.
But possible the most important safety-related changes from the VE to the VF lie in the body structure. You see, the VF uses five different types of steel throughout its construction, including low strength, medium strength, conventional high strength, advanced high strength, and ultra-high strength.
In the VF, conventional high strength steel is used in structural components such as the roof rails and lower crossbars, advanced high strength steel is used for the inner and outer rocker panels and door hinge pillars, while ultra-high-strength steel — which was not used at all on the VE Commodore at all — is used in the VF’s A-pillar, B-pillar, floor reinforcements, and door beams. The VF also makes use of aluminum in the hood and rear decklid, helping to save weight and provide elements of pedestrian safety.
Thanks to the new active, passive, and structural safety improvements, the VF Commodore is the safest car to ever be produced in Australia. Here’s Holden’s own deep dive on the matter: