Early research indicates that the inflatable belt should be “highly effective,” Mr. Hu said.
But it hasn’t been a hit with customers, Ford acknowledged. One issue was that the larger-than-normal belt buckle was hard to use for children or people with dexterity issues. And customers may not have understood the benefit of paying extra.
So Ford is changing its strategy and will offer belts with pre-tensioners and load limiters in the back seat as standard equipment on many models, said Desi Ujkashevic, Ford’s global director for its Automotive Safety Office.
“Safety continues to evolve,” she said.
Here are the current models that automakers say have load limiters and pre-tensioners for the second-row back seats adjacent to windows.
■ Audi A3 sedan, S3 sedan, RS3 Sedan, A3 Cabriolet, A3 Sportback, A4 allroad, A4, S4, A5 Cabriolet, S5 Cabriolet, A5 Coupe, S5 Coupe, RS5 Coupe, A5 Sportback, S5 Sportback, RS5 Sportback, A6, S6, A7, S7, A8, Q3, Q5, SQ5, Q7, Q8, TT Coupe, TTS Coupe, TT RS Coupe, TT Roadster.
■ BMW Model Year 2019: 3 Series, 5 Series, 6 Series Gran Turismo, 7 Series, 8 Series, X5 and X7
Model Year 2020: 3 Series, 5 Series, 6 Series Gran Turimso, 7 Series, 8 Series, X3, X4, X5, X6 and X7
■ Ford 2020 Explorer, 2020 Explorer ST, 2019 Edge, 2020 Escape
■ Jaguar 2019 E-PACE, 2019 F-PACE, 2019 I-PACE, 2019 XE, 2019 XF
■ Land Rover 2019 Discovery Sport, 2019 Discovery, 2019 Range Rover Evoque, Range Rover Velar, Range Rover Sport