31 May 2021
Max Mosley – Tribute from the Chairman of the Board of Trustees
By Lauchlan McIntosh, Chairman of the Towards Zero Foundation
There have been many fine tributes published since the sad loss with the death of Max Mosley, the inaugural Chairman of Global NCAP and subsequently the umbrella road safety charity, the Towards Zero Foundation (TZF).
Max’s ambition was to be remembered for not only his initial commitment to improve the safety of motor sport and then for the general community, but for actual results. Thousands, maybe even hundreds of thousands of people in the world have not been injured or killed in road crashes because of his determination. They probably have travelled safely home, probably unaware of the benefits of the safer cars, safer
roads and safer systems that Max championed.
Max was something of an enigmatic figure for me; quiet yet consistent, always to the point, with a dry humour. Nevertheless, as a road safety colleague here in Australia said, we should remember him simply as “a bloody legend.” I couldn’t agree more.
I feel honoured to have known and worked with him in several roles, mainly in various committees of related organisations for over 25 years. Firstly, there was his commitment and enthusiasm in working to combine and enhance the work of the two major international motoring and touring organisations, the Alliance Internationale de Tourisme (AIT) and Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA). He then used his skill and drive to establish the FIA Foundation having negotiated a fund of $300m (which will now be a legacy), to be used for a raft of road and vehicle improvement projects, including safety, across the world. He led European governments, motoring, and consumer organisations to form the new car crash testing body, EuroNCAP, building on the US and Australian NCAPs (despite massive objections from the powerful lobby of the car industry). EuroNCAP was described by the European Commission as the most cost-effective road safety initiative of the last 20 years.
Max saw the value of new technologies in motoring, transport and traffic as inaugural Chair of the European organisation, ERTiCo-ITS Europe, within an emerging international intelligent transport (ITS) framework.
Ten years ago, with his colleague David Ward, who had worked with him in all the above projects, he set up Global NCAP to assist coordination between the many NCAP and related bodies around the world and to crash test new vehicles in emerging markets to publicly demonstrate their safety performance (or lack of). Max then encouraged the formation of a combined body (the Towards Zero Foundation) to oversee several key road safety projects, including Global NCAP, to help drive us all to a goal to reduce road crash deaths to zero by 2050. Max only recently stood aside as chairman of the TZF, I am very privileged to have succeeded him.
Max will be greatly missed; it seems unimaginative, although correct, to simply say he was unique, and his road safety work was unparalled. However, I believe the results of Max’s leadership in improving road safety, as well as his philanthropy, are unlikely to ever be matched. His ambition was achieved.
Yes, a “bloody legend”. Vale Max.
Condolence letters should be sent to the Mosley family care of Payne Hicks Beach, 10 New Square, London WC2A 3QG.