IIHS names auto industry's safest rides

Thursday, January 3, 2013

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently named the safest cars in the automotive industry. The organization released its full list of 117 vehicles that earned Top Safety Pick awards, as well as 13 additional models that received the latest Top Safety Pick+ designation.

Those considering purchasing one of these vehicles are advised to outfit them with HuskyLiners® vehicle floor mats in order to keep the ride looking as clean as the day the ignition was first turned.

The IIHS evaluates a vehicle on various crash tests, issuing a rating of good, acceptable, marginal or poor. In order to qualify as a Top Safety Pick, a vehicle must receive a rating of good on the IIHS moderate overlap frontal test, side impact, rollover and rear tests.

"Models that earn Top Safety Pick also offer outstanding protection in many crashes," Lund says. "These vehicles are much safer choices than most vehicles on the market just five years ago."

In 2012, however, the IIHS created the Top Safety Pick+ award, introducing the small overlap frontal crash. Along with evaluations of seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries and rear impacts, a vehicle must receive a rating of good or better all four of the five crash tests, including the latest small overlap test, and must receive a rating of acceptable on the fifth test. The small overlap test replicates what happens to a vehicle's front end when it collides with another vehicle, a tree or a utility pole.

Lund said that in response to the newest evaluation, the IIHS has now seen automakers implement structural and restraint alterations to better meet their requirements. He added that five manufacturers redesigned their midsize cars to enhance protection in the small overlap test.

The 13 cars that received the IIHS Top Safety Pick+ designation include: Acura TL; Dodge Avenger and its twin, the Chrysler 200 4-door; Ford Fusion; Honda Accord 2-door; Honda Accord 4-door; Kia Optima; Nissan Altima 4-door; Subaru Legacy and its twin, the Subaru Outback; Suzuki Kizashi; Volkswagen Passat and Volvo S60.

For the fourth consecutive year the IIHS has named all Subaru models to be Top Safety Picks. In addition the Subaru Forester and Legacy earned the Top Safety Pick+ designation.

"The Subaru safety story begins right from the inception of every Subaru vehicle," said Shiro Ohta, president and CEO of Subaru Canada. "We are very pleased that the IIHS has recognized us again as the only manufacturer with 2013 Top Safety Picks for all models."