IIHS releases picks for safest cars of 2018

08 Décembre, 2017, 00:57 | Auteur: Therese Cote
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But, even as it announces its top safety picks for 2018, an agency that evaluates vehicle safety says automakers can do even better. This year, it's making the top award, "Top Safety Pick Plus", harder to get.

Over the last decade, vehicle safety has improved dramatically as automakers recognize that safety is a big selling point. Kia, Hyundai, and Subaru lead the pack for being the safest vehicles on the market. As a whole, foreign models edged out American models for safety. This year, a new test was included - simulating what happens when the front corner of the passenger's side smacks into a tree or pole.

Fifteen vehicles qualified for the Top Safety Pick Plus Award from the institute after the requirements were strengthened to include good-rated headlights and good or acceptable passenger-side protection in small overlap front crashes.

They've also bumped up standards for headlights. The sole Subaru model that did not qualify was the BRZ.

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New for 2018, the passenger side small overlap crash was added to the evaluations and a vehicle must also receive a "Good" or "Acceptable" rating.

The first official passenger-side ratings were released in October, following research tests past year.

"That company had six Top Safety Pick+ winners there", Lund said. "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".

"Most drivers when they buy a vehicle they think the passenger is going to be protected as well as they are, our new test is to try to achieve that", said IIHS President Adrian Lund. However, IIHS notes that the vast majority of the award-winners qualify only when optionally equipped because front crash prevention systems and acceptable or good headlights aren't often part of the base trims.

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