Vehicle safety is one of the major research areas in automotive engineering. The car industry is
developing new passive and active safety systems and techniques to increase the safety of
vehicle occupants. To reduce the development and testing costs of a new safety design, it is
recommendable to use computational crash simulations for early evaluation of safety behavior
under vehicle impact test. A device which is intended to reduce the damage done to vehicle
structures and the possible injury to passengers resulting from a collision is impact attenuator.
Numerical simulation by using finite element methods and design of the impact attenuator of a
Formula student car body, is presented in this paper. It was developed for an auto-cross racing
car, with a small formula style, which was later manufactured, prepared, tested and
demonstrated on the race competition. After initial study of the behaviour of impact attenuator
and car body as independent structures, we have added links, which are connecting all parts in
one assembly. Final results show the comparision between attenuator device, as the independent
structure and two solutions of the complete assembly with the car body. All initial requirements
were set in accordance with the 2008 Formula SAE rules. These requirements were completely
satisfied with the final configuration of the impact attenuator. The main aspects of the research
were oriented to get optimal values of kinetic energy evolution during the frontal impact, with
the lowest initial deceleration.