European Automotive Hall of Fame

  • Carl Hahn
  • Pierre Dreyfus
  • Nils Bohlin
  • Charles Stewart Rolls
  • Frederick Henry Royce

  • 2005 INDUCTEES

  • Lord Herbert Austin
  • Vincenzo Lancia
  • Pierre Lefaucheux
  • Ferry Porsche

    2004 INDUCTEES

  • Marquis Albert de Dion
  • Eberhard von Kuenheim
  • August Horch
  • Wilhelm Maybach
  • Benefactors

    2003 INDUCTEES

  • Heinz Nordhoff
  • Armand Peugeot
  • Giuseppe "Nuccio" Bertone
  • Henry Ford II
  • Benefactors

    2002 INDUCTEES

  • Henry Ford
  • Andre and Edouard Michelin
  • Nicolaus Otto
  • Battista Pininfarina


  • Giovanni Agnelli
  • Karl Friedrich Benz
  • Robert Bosch
  • Ettore Bugatti
  • Andre Citroen
  • Gottlieb Daimler
  • Rudolf Diesel
  • Enzo Ferrari
  • Giorgetto Giugiaro
  • Alec Issigonis
  • William Lyons
  • Ferdinand Porsche
  • Louis Renault

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  • Bohlin made driving safer

    His simple 3 point seat belt has saved lievs.

    Automotive News Europe

    Swedish-born Nils Ivar Bohlin has saved hundreds of thousands of lives since the three-point seat belt he invented was first offered by Volvo in 1959.

    In the late 1950s, only two-point lap belts were available -- and unused except by racecar drivers.

    Bohlin had developed ejection seats for Saab fighter aircraft in the 1950s. When Volvo CEO Gunnar Engelau lost a relative in a car crash, he recruited Bohlin to boost safety.

    Bohlin's task was formidable. After working with the four-point harnesses of fighter pilots, he knew the limitations of lap belts and the impracticality of four-point systems in cars. He focused on combating the harsh deceleration forces of crashes.

    Within a year, Bohlin engineered a simple solution that is the industry's most effective and widely-used life-saver: the three-point seat belt.

    Volvo first offered the system in 1959. Almost 50 years later, the seat belt is standard equipment. Engineers have enhanced it, but Bohlin's basic design is unchanged.

    He also developed Volvo traffic-accident research based on real-life data instead of theoretical research. Bohlin also created the principles and started development of Volvo side-impact protection systems.

    He died in 2002 at the age of 82.