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Mercedes to add inflatable seat belts

Mercedes-Benz says it will start putting inflatable rear

Mercedes-Benz says it will start putting inflatable rear seat belts in some of its vehicles, according to a statement from the automaker. (Credit: Handout)

Mercedes-Benz says it will start putting inflatable rear seat belts in some of its vehicles.

According to a company statement, the multilayered belt straps with Velcro seams can expand to nearly three times their normal width during an accident. The expanded width helps distribute force in an accident, which can reduce head, neck and chest trauma.

Although Mercedes-Benz is typically among the first automaker to use an innovated safety technology such as this -- including crumple zones, safety door locks, pre-tensioner seat belts, air bags, anti-lock brakes and electronic stability control -- Ford beat the automaker on this feature.

Ford told says it would put inflatable rear seat belts in some of its vehicles back in 2009, and it has since put them in many Ford and Lincoln crossovers.

Mercedes has yet to announce which vehicles will get the new technology.

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