APV Safety Products

APV Expands Testing Capability and Cyber Security

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

We are pleased to announce APV's strategic investment in expanding our Industrial Testing capabilities within the Test Centre and our corporate wide Cyber Security program.

This investment will provide enhanced capabilities to support our customers across all industries and demonstrates the importance we are placing on our response to the evolving Cyber Security landscape within the Global Supply Chain.
The investment increases the capacity of our existing testing services for our customers and the Cyber Security uplift journey is an essential element of our internal risk management and business continuity frameworks. This will remain an important element of APV's business strategy and direction moving forward.
Defense have recognized the importance of APV's contribution to Australia's Sovereign Industry Capability with the testing services we provide to Defense and Industry, as well as our positioning with the supply of Safety Critical Military Occupant Restraints, by awarding us two grants to support this program.

To see the latest Defense Connect coverage of the project:


APV to adopt a flexible workforce model and calls on Gov’t to keep Australian Manufacturing running.

Friday, March 27, 2020

Today at APV we consulted with our staff to keep everyone informed of the latest impacts of the Covid19 health and economic shocks.

The business is fighting hard to ensure that we protect the health and well-being of our employees, and to keep them employed through this crisis. To this end APV has called on Gov’t to keep Australian Manufacturing operations open on the pre-requisite that appropriate Health risk mitigation measures are in place to protect their workforce. In effect our business is already in a Lock Down to keep CoronaVirus out of the workplace and to ensure our staff are safer coming to work than going to the shops. Our workforce wants to come to work and this is certainly a superior outcome for their overall health and well-being. Here, within the APV community we can ensure that all employees are supported.
In consultation with our employees we are implementing new flexible workforce models. These are significant workplace changes and our staff are supporting this and embracing measures that will allow us to maintain employment levels, ensure people get paid and that APV pushes through this crisis. This will ensue that we in turn meet the needs of our customers and that we stay open for business.

APV has a significant amount of work on ranging from new product development testing, testing of child-seats that keep our children safe, through to production of seat-belts for essential services transport equipment. We make a major contribution to road safety outcomes and our business is about keeping you safe. Therefore APV and our staff are absolutely committed to remaining open and supporting our customers and staff during the period of this crisis.

Stay safe and well during these difficult times.

Harry Hickling

Managing Director

GoAuto, the premier source of automotive industry research and news today ran the story:



APV Ranked in top 10% of Mid Size Aust Manufacturers and Featured in Go Auto

Thursday, August 29, 2019

APV's Business Transformation has continued during FY18 and FY19 leading to our ranking in the top 10% of Mid Size Australian Manufacturers in terms of overall Growth, Capital Investment and Financial Performance against a recent Grant Thornton Manufacturing Benchmarking Report. The benchmarking report assesses a broad range of industries and FY18 performance benchmarks to assist Industry Leaders in developing their business strategies, assessing risk and emerging opportunities.

It is this continued growth and diversification that makes APV a great place to work. Providing exciting opportunities for innovation, product development and investment in new production lines. We have supported Graduate Internship programs and employed additional engineering resources this year. It is great to see these new opportunities being created for Australia's up and coming graduates. 

This has attracted the attention of the Go Auto group that operate Australia’s premier Automotive news feed service and on-line newsletter service. Terry Martin, editor of GoAutoNews and senior writer, came in for a near full day visit to better understand APV, including the opportunity to witness product development testing and associated crash-tests to ensure the safety of aftermarket products under development by the customer. Giving Terry a very first hand view of the customer experience at the Test Lab.

Following this he has written three articles that provide a very unique insight into the depth and diversity of the company.


On a side note, as an organisation, we are proud of our corporate safety and environmental track record. In the GoAuto article titled "Taking Care of It", you can see the team going the extra yard to maximise recycling of waste materials from our Takata Airbag Disposal programs. On a personal note, I also believe the industry should be commended for their efforts in maximising the effectiveness of the Takata Airbag Recalls - this is no easy feat and is a huge cost on the industry.

Harry Hickling

Managing Director



Friday, July 20, 2018

FY18 Brings 28% Revenue Growth for APV


  • 28% Revenue Growth across all markets 
  • Awarded 2 major International supply contracts 
  • Expanded management team 
  • Commissioned 2 additional production lines and 20% increase in production staff to support increased demand 
  • $2 million Investment into Test Centre


Harry Hickling, Managing Director of APV, is pleased to announce our 28% revenue growth during FY18.

“FY18 has been an exciting year for us and I wish to thank our customers for their support. Our persistence in the world market, brand recognition, our people and dedication to top quality products has resulted in this strong long-term growth for the company”.

APV is now selling at volume into Australia, NZ, USA, Europe and Asia as demonstrated by fortnightly pallet deliveries into the US. This is a tremendous result as we continue to build our international Brand and Reputation”

Within the Bus and Coach market we are the dominant supplier for Australian and continue to grow our North American market, where we have just completed a large build demonstrating APV Safety Products as a well established international OEM.

APV also continues to build our Industrial and Material Handling markets internationally, with important relationships for distribution of our products.



Martin Merry, ex Holden Director Vehicle Operations, has been appointed as GM for APV Safety Products to support our continued growth and to further refine our production capacity, systems and process controls.

To support this growth Safety Products has completed the upgrade and commissioning of two addition production lines to enable on time delivery for our growing order demand.

Good news for our people has been the 20% increase in production staff to account for the new production lines and the current work mix for domestic and international customers.

Rapid increases in production requirements has required us to make many changes to our production areas and had a flow-on effect to our suppliers who have had to quickly react to our higher volume requests. “It’s great to have the conversations with suppliers that yes the volume is real, and I need it yesterday,” said Martin Merry.



APV Safety Products completed its full upgrade to ISO9001:2015 Quality Management System in October 2017 and continues to have Independent Auditing of its processes and procedures, and Standards Compliance to ensure the highest levels of quality.

APV Safety Products is the only Seatbelt manufacturer and supplier in Australia performing these quality processes to ensure production quality and traceability. And this is backed up by the extensive test programs within the Test Centre.

In any one day, production can be manufacturing products to a variety of international standards including: ADR4, AS/NZS2596, FMVSS, SAEJ386, ECE R16 so strong controls are essential.



APV is please to announce the $2 million investment in new Cameras, Test Dummies and Equipment to ensure that the Test Centre remains the most advance facility of its type in Australia. These capabilities will support advanced design and manufacturing for industry as well as testing to the latest international protocols, including NCAP and ADR’s

The Test facility recently won the 2017 SAE Gold and Platinum Innovation Award for development of Test Methodologies for Automotive Accessories and Bull Bars. The Safety Assessment of accessories will continue to grow with the increased sophistication of vehicle safety systems.



There is an exciting year ahead for APV, our customers, suppliers and staff as we continue to improve the business, start new contracts and release new products to support our customers.


SAE Australia recognises APV with a 2017 Platinum Award.

Friday, April 20, 2018

APV’s makes a broad contribution to Road Safety across Australia and this is no more evident that in assessing the Safety of Accessories fitted to vehicles. The latest 4WDS and SUVs have advanced Safety Management Systems, that include sensors and radars in the front of the vehicle to trigger firing of pretensioner seat belts and airbags during vehicle crashes along with critical sensors, including radar, for their autonomous systems such as Autonomous Emerging Braking.

APV recognised in 2012 the need to provide additional support to industry in ensuring that accessories do not interfere with such systems. An early adopter of this was the Car Seat Cover manufacturers ensuring that their products are tested at APV in Australia’s only certified Airbag lab to ensure they do not interfere with Airbag deployments.

Testing that Bull bars do not interfere with such systems though, is a very complex issue. At low impacts, you do not want this rigid structure prematurely firing the vehicles airbags, even in a low speed Kangaroo strike. But similarly in a harsh accident we need the vehicles safety systems to perform as designed.

Yet how do we test this and make it affordable for Australia’s Bull Bar manufacturers without spending hundreds of thousands of dollars crash testing vehicles - just to test the bull bar design and fitment? In fact under our testing regimes, it has not been uncommon for us to send the manufacturers back to the drawing board several times before a final product is released onto the Market. This can only be done with APv’s innovative and low cost test programs.

The underlying principle of the testing is found in a sophisticated test methodology that we commenced development of in 2012 that simulates the frontal crash dynamics of the vehicle along with the OEM bumper bar design and mounting surfaces - with back to back testing of the Manufacturers Bull Bar and Mounting systems.

This provides the highest level of assurance possible, without the actual costs of completing full vehicle crash test programs.

It is with great pride that I can recognise the work of our team, as a result of receiving this prestigious award. Thanks SAE.

Harry Hickling

Managing Director.


APV New Business Announcement

Wednesday, March 22, 2017


APV is proud to announce that on March 17th the company signed a long term supply agreement representing $1 million USD p.a. in export revenues.


Under this agreement APV Safety Products Pty Ltd will supply seatbelt components, including APV's seatbelt retractors and buckles to support the north American operations of a US customer. The APV retractor originates in Australia and APV controls its design and development from within our engineering and testing operations at Campbellfield, Victoria, Australia.


This latest agreement has been structured to support the U.S. customer in supplying value for money solutions, at internationally competitive pricing, from their Nth American operations. The agreement also recognises their long term relationship with APV and our past performance as a supplier.


"APV is proud to be delivering superior solutions within the Passive Safety Systems market, and as the Managing Director of the business, I am excited that we can provide internationally competitive product with the trusted levels of quality required for Safety Critical products from Australia."


APV is an international OEM of specialist restraints within the Automotive Aftermarket, Industrial, Bus and Coach, Truck and Specialist Restraint markets with a strong reputation for quality and supplier performance. APV is recognised as a prominent player within the Passive Safety Systems Market with world class engineering and industrial testing capabilities. Over the past decade we have established an international Brand and APV is recognised as a market leader within the markets that we operate within.


Contact Details:
Harry Hickling
Managing Director


Side Airbags in Passenger Vehicles and Seat Belts in Buses

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

As the Managing Director of APV Engineering and Testing Services, I am perhaps given a unique insight into the issues relating to vehicle and occupant safety. I would like to take this opportunity to share with you two very important features that we all should look for regarding safety. The first being the fitment of Side Airbags to passenger vehicles, and secondly the need for wearing and having seat belts fitted to buses.

Side Airbag Performance

Did you ever wonder how important an Airbag is for saving lives? Well the latest Australian Built Holden Commodore, tested in our lab in Melbourne shows you just how quickly the airbag deploys to save your life in a 65 kph traditional T bone crash scenario, where a vehicle runs into the driver or passenger side of a car at 90 degrees.

Of course the VF Commodore is not alone in using state of the art airbag technologies to improve occupant safety, but the following video certainly demonstrates their importance in vehicle safety.

By the use of state-of-the-art and highly advanced technology, and as if by magic, the Side Airbag in the VF Commodore deploys before the occupant, in this case an APV Side Impact Dummy, even feels the impact. It is truly an impressive result and here you can see in milli second increments just how important Side Airbags are for your safety.

My family live on a country property and over the years we have travelled many country miles. One word of advise I have always given my children, is about the risk of hitting trees on country roads, especially on corners - side airbags in vehicles are certainly just as important in these crash scenarios as well.

Wearing and Fitment of Seat Belts in Buses

Recently I returned from a short break at Kakado running around in a tourist bus at 90 kph without seat belts. I felt a little uncomfortable in fact that I wasn't given the choice of wearing a seatbelt in a bus doing this speed when I wear one every day in a car.

Then during September 2013, All Terrain Warriors who design and build specialist tourist buses for outback Australia asked the APV Test Centre to test their latest design of a tourist bus that has been especially designed for seats with seatbelts for vehicles venturing off the bitumen and onto remote gravel and off-road driving conditions in the Australian outback.

The following video, shows just how well the bus body structure performs. What you will see is the All Terrain Warriors bus cabin being tested to an AS68/00 bus test. Here, their Bus Cabin, fully fitted with seats, is attached to our test rig with full instrumentation and cameras, recording a simulated crash scenario. In real life the Bus Cabin, would be fitted to a light truck chassis for use in outback Australia - a harsh and often unpredictable environment.

At just 50 kph the crash simulation shows that all occupants wearing seatbelts are held safely in place. The seats remain intact and anchored safely in place to the bus structure - keeping its buckled up occupants safely restrained during the accident.

Of course not the same can be said for those Crash Dummies that failed to buckle up before taking their bus ride. You may notice that the seats, in front of these dummies, have to not only keep their belted occupants safe, but also take a brutal hit from the unrestrained Crash Dummies from behind, leaving the seats slightly deformed and pushed forward.

Again, this video shows you first hand - the importance of buckling up in any passenger vehicle. On a personal note, I would like to congratulate an Australian Company, All Terrain Warriors, in taking the initiative to design and build a safer Off Road Tourist Bus Cabin.

So be the judge yourself. I hope you have found the videos informative and I believe they translate into a very visual demonstration of the importance of wearing seatbelts, having buses fitted with seat belts and passenger vehicles fitted with side airbags.

So Buckle Up and Drive Safely.

Harry Hickling
Managing Director
Australian Performance Vehicles Pty Ltd

Disclaimer: "This news piece is not serving as a product endorsement by APV. It is being shared in our news section purely to highlight the importance of Side Airbags and the wearing and fitment of Seatbelts in Buses. All views and opinions expressed are by Harry Hickling".

The all new Commodore VF proves its world class safety at the APV Crash Facility

Friday, August 02, 2013

Proving that Australian – designed and manufactured vehicles can deliver world class safety, the Holden VF Commodore was awarded 5 stars by the Australian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) following tests conducted at the APV Technical Centre Crash Test Facility. The official ANCAP 5 star rating, which includes results from the Frontal Impact test, was released yesterday. 

APV Performed the Side and Pole Side Impact tests in April at the request of ANCAP. The side impact test simulates a classic ‘T-bone’ crash, where a vehicle is struck by another vehicle travelling at 50km/h at right angles to it. This type of impact occurs at intersections when one vehicle fails to stop at a red light or fails to give way. The Pole impact test simulates the vehicle impacting a rigid pole at 29km/h. Such an impact would occur when a vehicle looses traction on the side of the road and slides sideways into an object such as a telephone pole or a tree 

Experts at the APV Tech Centre performing the tests were impressed with the Commodore’s side impact performance, with the vehicle scoring full marks in both tests. The vehicle’s structure and airbags all performed well. The APV Test Operations Manager, Tony Forster, has commended Holden’s exemplary result, stating that ‘I congratulate Holden’s Australian Safety team on achieving a world class 5 star result’.  

Over the months leading up to the ANCAP crash tests, the APV Component Test Laboratory has worked closely with the Holden restraint system engineers. The APV Laboratory provided deployment testing and environmental conditioning along with high speed imaging support for the development of the VF side and passenger airbag as well as the inflatable curtain. 

The new Commodore scored 35.06 points out of 37, scoring maximum points in all but the frontal offset crash test component where it managed 14.06 out of 16. The five-star rating will apply to all Holden VF Commodore sedan, wagon and ute variants, as well as the new Holden WN Caprice.

APV Engineering & Testing Services hosts the Vehicle Safety Research Group during the Victorian Government Safety Announcement on 16 October 2012

Monday, October 15, 2012

The Victorian Government Minister for Roads, Terry Mulder, today announced the results of a study into the effectiveness of side impact curtain airbags at the APV Tech Centre. Supporting the announcement were representatives from Vic Roads, Transport Accident Commission (TAC) and Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) who participated in the study.
At the announcement, Mr Mulder said:
“The Victorian Coalition Government is committed to improving safety for road users, including encouraging safer vehicle purchases and investigating the effectiveness of safety features “…
“Side impact vehicle crashes are common and harmful, accounting for 25 per cent of vehicle occupant casualties and 28 per cent of fatalities in Australia….
 “The analysis found a dramatic 51% reduction in injury to all body regions; a 61% reduction in injury to the head, neck, face and chest; and a 53% reduction in injury to the head, neck and face.”

Minister Terry Mulder at the APV Tech Centre, announces the importance of side impact curtain airbags.

In essence, this study highlights the important of safety features such as curtain airbags and how they can make a “real” difference to protect vehicle occupants in the event of a crash. This study also provides a strong argument for car buyers to include the selections of such safety features when researching their next purchase.

For more information view the following news reports:               Seven News Report                TEN News Report
About the APV Tech Centre…..
APV Engineering & Testing Services (APV Tech Centre), established in 2011 when acquired by the APV Group of companies (www.apvcorporation.com), has developed all of it specialised expertise and capabilities in Victoria (and Australia); and has transformed its presence in industry to be an independent test service provider.
The APV Tech Centre is fully Australian owned and operates from its home base in Campbellfield Victoria; and is expanding to meet the changing needs of Australian industry.

Tony Forster and Andrew Baldacchino from APV Tech Centre with Minister Terry Mulder

Today, the APV Tech Centre specialises in:

  • Mechanical, vibration & materials testing
  • Environmental & life cycle exposure
  • Crash & safety testing
  • Photography & high speed imaging
  • Instrumentation & high speed data acquisition
  • Providing specialist engineering services
The APV Tech Centre is a NATA (ISO17025) accredited mechanical and environmental test laboratory; and the only accredited test house in Australia to offer a full range of airbag, seatbelt, child restraints, dynamic sled and full vehicle crash testing all on one site.

Curtain Airbag deployment sequence using Phantom FLEX high speed camera @ 2500fps at the APV Tech Centre
Services are used for R&D, certification, production testing, as well as high speed camera and specialised field work to a wide range of industry, which include:
  • Automotive (OEM and aftermarket)
  • Defence
  • Aviation
  • Transportation seating
  • Component manufacturers
Included in this, is test and engineering support for APV Safety Products (www.apvsafetyproducts.com), which is the market leader in Australia for aftermarket seatbelt and industrial safety harnesses to both the domestic and international markets.
Having a strong history in the automotive safety arena, and being the only test facility of its kind in Victoria, the APV Tech Centre is supportive of all initiatives that work towards improving the safety for road users, vehicle occupants and the industrial workforce; and so are proud to host this Victorian Government announcement .
Andrew Baldacchino
General Manager
APV Engineering & Testing Services