Discover How the IIHS Has Revolutionized Car Safety Standards
Since 2006, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has recognized a handful of vehicles with its Top Safety Pick and a few days ago, after researching the newest models, IIHS unveiled its 2018 picks. Colorado drivers will be happy to hear that some of the most popular cars found on state roads are among those listed.
2018 Winners Passed More Stringent Safety Criteria Than Ever Before
IIHS has recognized vehicles with its Top Safety Pick as a way to help consumers easily research and purchase vehicles with the highest safety ratings. In 2013, the organization also included a second category, the Top Safety Pick+, a higher designation when a vehicle includes two added safety features. The Safety Pick+ emphasizes headlights as well as front seat passenger safety when it comes to certain types of auto accidents. Focusing on headlights, IIHS tested how well they worked on high and low beam while at the same time, how much glare they emitted so as not to “blind” or interfere with the oncoming drivers.
Top Safety Pick+ also required stricter guidelines on the safety of front seat passengers in certain types of accidents known as small-overlap crashes. The newer safety guidelines focused on how a front seat passenger will fare if the vehicle is hit on the front left side. IIHS started looking into front seat passenger safety in small-overlap crashes back in 2012, but recently included this safety issue in its rating program. IIHS president Adrian Lund noted:
“Drivers expect that their passengers, who are often family, will be protected just as well as they are. Manufacturers have been taking this issue seriously since we first shed light on it, and we’re confident that good small overlap protection will become the norm on the passenger side, just as it has on the driver side.”
And the Winners Are…
Though Outside magazine noted that the Ford F-series was the most popular vehicle in Colorado, USA Today claims that the Subaru Outback was the most popular Colorado car based on new car registrations. Regardless of that debate, it’s known that the Subaru brand is extremely popular in Colorado and drivers of the 2018 Subaru WRX, Impreza, Legacy, and Outback will be happy to hear that those cars qualified for Top Safety Pick+ when fortified with optional front crash prevention and specific headlights. In addition, the Crosstrek and the Forester received the IIHS Top Safety Pick designation. According to IIHS, the only Subaru model that didn’t qualify for its safety designation was the BRZ.
Other 2018 Top Safety Pick + models include:
- Kia Forte
- Kia Soul
- Toyota Camry
- BMW 5 series
- Genesis G80
- Genesis G90
- Lincoln Continental
- Mercedes-Benz E-Class
- Mercedes-Benz GLC
- Hyundai Santa Fe
- Hyundai Santa Sport
IIHS has noted that occupant protection has been amazing over the past decade as automakers realize their role in safety and do a better job of working with engineers to produce a better, safer vehicle for consumers. IIHS hopes its recognition program will help consumers make the right decision when buying a car, choosing safety features over other technological advances.