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Posts Tagged ‘iihs top safety pick’

Hybrids, EVs Earn Strong IIHS Safety Marks

Safety group gives top ratings to Volt, Prius Prime.

by on Feb.01, 2017

The 2017 Chevy Volt earned the IIHS's Top Safety Pick Plus award along with the 2017 Toyota Prius Prime.

It appears that great gas mileage – or no gas mileage at all – and safety can go hand-in-hand, according to the latest Insurance Institute for Highway Safety testing results.

The group recently gave the Chevy Volt and Toyota Prius Prime its top scores, Top Safety Pick Plus, to the two plug in hybrids. It also took the time to rate the Tesla Model S and BMW i3 all-electric vehicles and noted that those fell just short of earning that “Plus” distinction.

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“There’s no reason the most efficient vehicles can’t also be among the safest,” says David Zuby, IIHS executive vice president and chief research officer. The Prius Prime is the more miserly of the two getting 54 mpg while the Volt came in at 42 mpg. (more…)

Four of Seven Midsize Utes Fare Poorly in Crash Tests

Only Nissan Murano takes IIHS Top Safety Pick Plus rating.

by on May.12, 2015

The Nissan Murano slams into a barrier as part of the IIHS small overlap crash test.

Only three of the seven midsize SUVs scored well in a series of front-end crash tests designed to simulate real-world accidents.

And only one of the 2015 models, the Nissan Murano, earned the coveted Top Safety Pick Plus rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, though the Ford Flex and Jeep Wrangler also passed the small overlap crash test designed to simulate what happens when a vehicle’s corner clips another car or a utility pole.

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The test has posed some serious challenges for manufacturers and has led to a number of vehicle redesigns since it was first used in 2012. In the small overlap test, 25% of a vehicle’s front end strikes a barrier at 40 mph.


Most Minicars Fail New Frontal Crash Tests

Chevy Spark the only model to pass – barely.

by on Jan.22, 2014

The Chevrolet Spark was the only one of 11 minicars to pass the IIHS front crash test.

A new round of crash tests could give serious pause to those hoping to downsize in order to lower their fuel bills or simply to reduce monthly payments – especially those who don’t want to downsize their safety.

Of 11 new minicars examined by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 10 failed the trade group’s challenging new small overlap front test, the sort of crash common in real-world driving.  Only the Chevrolet Spark passed, and then just barely – the IIHS dubbing “these tiny vehicles the worst performing group of any evaluated so far.”

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As a result, the Spark is now the only minicar to earn the group’s coveted 2014 Top Safety Pick award.  Several other models previously honored lose that endorsement after failing the new crash test which is designed to replicate what happens when the front corner of a vehicle collides with another car or an object like a utility pole or tree.


IIHS Names America’s Safest Cars

Unexpected absences as the list shrinks from 130 vehicles to just 39.

by on Dec.19, 2013

The number of vehicles that qualified for this year's picks fell by more than 75%.

The old adage that “safety doesn’t sell” certainly doesn’t apply today.  It has become just as critical a factor in the buying decision for most American motorists as fuel economy.

So, there could be a lot of attention paid to the latest list of America’s safest cars, at least according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. A total of 22 vehicles made the trade group’s most prestigious list, those given a Top Safety Pick+ rating, while another 17 got the still significant Top Safety Pick imprimatur.

There were a number of surprises delivered by the IIHS, however, including the absence of the new Toyota Corolla from the list. Only four products from the Japanese maker – and not a single one of its Lexus models – made this year’s safest cars list.  Indeed, while there were a whopping 130 different models that made the cut for 2013, only a total of 39 are on the list this year.

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On the other hand, there were eight models built by Honda and its luxury Acura brand, more than any other manufacturer.

“We’ve made it more difficult for manufacturers this year,” says Adrian Lund, president of the IIHS, which has been awarding Top Safety Picks since 2006, adding the Top Safety Pick+ category in 2012.


Honda Accord, Suzuki Kizashi Top Midsize Sedans in New Crash Test

Toyota Camry, Prius models flunk.

by on Dec.20, 2012

The 2013 Honda Accord after undergoing the Small Offset Crash Test.

Only two of 18 midsize family cars earned “good” ratings in the new frontal crash test by the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, and one of those will soon be leaving the market.

The 2013 Honda Accord and Suzuki Kizashi were the only mainstream midsize sedans to earn good ratings, with the IIHS rating another 11 models  as “acceptable.” Two cars from Toyota landed in the “poor” category, the insurance industry-funded organization reported, the recently redesigned Camry and the new Prius V. In fact, the hybrid model “sustained major structural damage in the test,” the IIHS revealed in a new release.

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The overall results might not seem impressive yet the family sedans actually outperformed the midsize luxury and near-luxury models previously tested by the Institute, noted IIHS President Adrian Lund.

“It’s remarkable, Lund said, adding that, “The difference is stunning. Thirteen of these midsize cars offer better crash protection than all but three of their luxury counterparts, and at a price that’s easier on the wallet.”


IIHS Calls for Better Underride Guards on Large Trucks

Study shows many truck safety guards are not strong enough to prevent cars from sliding underneath.

by on Mar.02, 2011

The Institute of Highway Safety tests of a Chevrolet Malibu show a significant difference in crash damage when the car was crashed into another car as compared to a large truck. In the bottom picture, the car was crashed into a Hyundai trailer.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is calling on the federal government to increase standards for semi-truck trailers to prevent passenger cars from sliding underneath in rear-end collisions.

The institute filed a petition with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to require better rear guards on truck trailers to reduce deaths in such accidents.

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“Cars’ front-end structures are designed  to manage a tremendous amount of crash energy in a way that minimizes injuries for their occupants,” institute President Adrian Lund said. “Hitting the back of a large  truck is a game changer. You might be riding in a vehicle that earns top marks in frontal crash tests, but if the truck’s underride  guard fails — or isn’t there at all — your  chances of walking away from even a relatively low-speed crash aren’t good.”

NHTSA estimates that 423 people die each year in passenger vehicles that strike the back of large trucks.

The IIHS tested a Chevrolet Malibu – an IIHS Top Safety Pick – in crashes with trailers from three manufacturers, Wabash,  Hyundai and Vanguard. It found that in 35 mph crashes where the car struck a parked trailer squarely, crashes with the Hyundai and Vanguard trailers would likely be fatal, with serious intrusions in the passenger compartment, but the car that crashed into the Wabash trailer did better.


Record Crowd of 66 Vehicles Named IIHS Top Safety Picks

More than doubles last year’s total.

by on Dec.22, 2010

IIHS crash-tests a Volkswagen Touareg, the only large SUV to get its top safety pick award.

More vehicles than ever before can claim a “top safety pick” award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.  The Virginia-based organization gave that honor to 66 of the latest cars, trucks and crossovers, more than doubling the number of top picks it awarded last year.

Among the top-rated models were 40 passenger cars, 25 sport-utility vehicles and one minivan, reports the IIHS, which serves as an automotive testing and lobbying group for the insurance industry.  It regularly crash tests new vehicles in a private counterpart to the tests done by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In 2009, the IIHS handed out just 27 top picks, noted the group’s director, Adrian Lund.  Doubling that list, he said, ” gives consumers shopping for a safer new car or SUV – from economy to luxury models – plenty of choices to consider in most dealer showrooms. In fact, every major automaker has at least one winning model this year.”

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To get designated a top safety pick isn’t easy, requiring a vehicle to score well in a variety of tests, including front, side, rollover and rear crashes.  Vehicles must also be equipped with a range of standard safety features, including airbags, traction control and electronic stability control, at a minimum.  They must also meet minimum requirements in roof crush tests.