This paper presents the concepts and first group of test results from a project designed to: 1.Quantify thoracic impact response using cadaver and baboon subjects;* 2.Compile analytical functions relating thoracic kinematic response to injuries observed in the experiments; and, 3.Define performance specifications insuring response fidelity between human and surrogate thoraxes. The experiments, which vary G-level, velocity, and direction of impact, utilize restraint systems including belts, airbags, and EA-columns. Resulting injuries are recorded at autopsy and an AIS rating assigned. Using the kinematic accelerometer data, injury-predictive functions are generated using statistical regression procedures. The utilization of project results in developing performance specifications for surrogate thoraxes is discussed in conclusion.