So… TIL that everyone in the future drives bumper cars.
To cause any significant damage to Passengers in a vehicular accident, you need to cause a Fault.
A Car (Size 1, Speed 2 and Arm 3) requires 6 Structure damage to Cause 1 fault.
Slamming into an immovable obstacle at speed 2 (the usual speed a Car will be going at) will cause 2+2[CD] Vicious 1 damage. On average that’s between 2-4 Damage. So, worst case, the Car takes 1 Damage. That’s hardly representative of ‘slamming into a wall’.
The passengers will be subject to a Jarring Stop and will take 1+3[CD], Stun damage. This does 1-7 damage so can cause a Wound, but realistically most characters are at worst going to be Staggered and will shake that off with a Challenging Absterge test.
It strikes me that this is seriously underpowered, and makes the consequences of failing a Vehicle test relatively… well… meh…
I think that vehicular damage 4X[CD], Vicious 2 damage, where X is the number of zones the vehicle passed through in the last turn gives better results. This means that damage scales rapidly with speed.
This makes it so that at Speed 1 (1 Zone per turn) it’s not dissimilar to what we have at the moment: most vehicles will take no damage or only cosmetic damage. At speed 2, an extreme set of rolls will cause a Fault (particularly to lightly armoured vehicles) but it’s still quite low odds (once armour is accounted for). At speed 3 a crash has quite a decent chance of causing a Fault and sometimes even 2, but on average for an average Car it’s only a little worse than 50/50 odds to take one, and most larger vehicles will come away without a Fault.
OTOH crashing a Motorcyle at speed is risky: not only does it have low armour, but its small scale means that a bad crash at Speed 3 may do 2 Faults which is almost guaranteed to write off the bike and leave any passengers Wounded. Which is as it should be.
It also means that going ‘Flat Out’ and losing control is a Bad Day. Which, again, is something I don’t feel the present rules capture: there’s still a not insignificant chance that a Car which has traveled 5 Zones and then crashes won’t take any Faults (it needs to a minimum of 9 Damage, before Armour Soak, to inflict 1 Fault).