In a new round of evaluations, 5 of 7 small SUVs earn good ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for occupant protection in a passenger-side small overlap front crash.
The ratings bring to 16 the number of small SUVs the Institute has evaluated in the passenger-side small overlap front test, which was introduced in 2017 to encourage manufacturers to offer the same level of protection for front-seat passengers as drivers in this type of crash.
The BMW X1; Chevrolet Equinox and its twin, the GMC Terrain; Jeep Compass and Mitsubishi Outlander earn good ratings in the passenger-side small overlap front test. The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport earns a marginal rating, and the Ford Escape earns poor. For the 2018 model year, the Equinox shed weight to join the small SUV size class. Earlier models were classified as midsize.
None of the newly rated 2018 models earns better than acceptable marks for structure. (The Honda CR-V and Mazda CX-5 are the only small SUVs evaluated so far to earn good ratings for structure in the passenger-side small overlap front test.) The Outlander Sport is marginal, and the Escape is rated poor. Both the Outlander Sport and Escape allowed too much intrusion into the occupant compartment on the right side.
The refreshed 2019 Kia Optima debuted at the New York International Auto Show today. Kia’s best-selling midsize sedan was unveiled with new design cues inside and out, expanded ADAS technology, a new UVO infotainment strategy and available European-inspired red and black two-tone sport leather-trimmed seats. Additional available enhancements to the Optima line include new alloy wheel choices, ambient LED interior lighting, and a new Passion Red exterior color.
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A new crash test program from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety aims to ensure that manufacturers pay attention to the safety of front passengers as well as drivers.
The test was developed after it became clear that some manufacturers were giving short shrift to the right side of the vehicle when it comes to small overlap front crash protection. A good or acceptable passenger-side rating will be required to qualify for the Institute’s 2018 TOP SAFETY PICK+ award.
The first test group in the passenger-side small overlap front test program did better overall than vehicles IIHS previously evaluated for research. Ten out of 13 midsize cars tested earn a good rating, while one is acceptable and two earn a marginal rating.
In contrast with a group of 2014-16 model small SUVs tested for research, none of the 2017-18 midsize cars had a poor or marginal structural rating. Instead, the biggest problem in the new group was inconsistent airbag protection in five cars, which would put passengers’ heads at risk.
Continuing a multi-year string of quality and reliability awards and accolades, J.D. Power’s 2017 Initial Quality Study (IQS) today recognized Kia Motors as the highest-ranking nameplate in the United States for the second year in a row. Kia’s improvement to 72 problems per 100 vehicles marks the best nameplate performance within the last 20 years of the study, driven by five segment awards – the most of any nameplate — for the Soul (Compact Multi-Purpose Vehicle), Forte (Compact Car), Cadenza (Large Car), Niro (Small SUV) and Sorento (Midsize SUV). The Kia Soul took home an IQS award for the third consecutive year while Kia’s two newest models, Cadenza and Niro, were outstanding performers in their first model year, with the Kia Cadenza earning the top score among all models ranked in the study. Together with the Optima and Sportage , each of the seven award eligible Kia models included in the 2017 IQS study finished first or second in their respective categories.
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New midsize SUV ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety show that headlights are improving when it comes to visibility, but many still need to do a better job of lighting the road ahead while limiting bothersome glare.
The 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe and the 2017 Volvo XC60 are the only models available with good-rated headlights among the 19 midsize SUVs and 18 midsize luxury SUVs evaluated in this new round of tests. Twelve SUVs are available with headlights rated acceptable, while 23 aren’t available with anything other than marginal- or poor-rated headlights.
Drivers of late-model pickup trucks are likely to find themselves squinting into the darkness or temporarily blinding other drivers, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's latest headlight ratings show.
All four small pickups evaluated are available only with headlights that earn a poor rating. The same goes for 3 out of 7 large pickups. Only one large pickup, the Honda Ridgeline, is available with good-rated headlights, though all but the most expensive trim levels come with poor ones.
Pickups are the third vehicle category to be put through the IIHS headlight evaluations. Midsize cars were the first in March, followed by small SUVs in July.
IIHS launched its headlight ratings after finding that government standards based on laboratory tests allow for huge variation in the amount of illumination headlights provide in on-road driving. In the Institute's evaluations, engineers measure how far light is projected from a vehicle's low beams and high beams as the vehicle travels straight and on curves. Glare from low beams for oncoming drivers also is measured.
Not a single small SUV out of 21 tested earns a good rating in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s headlight evaluations, and only four are available with acceptable-rated headlights.
Among the 21 vehicles, there are 47 different headlight combinations available. More than two-thirds of them are rated poor, making this group of vehicles even more deficient when it comes to lighting than the midsize cars that were the first to be rated earlier this year.
Headlight performance in today’s vehicles varies widely. Government standards are based on laboratory tests, which don’t accurately gauge performance in real-world driving. The issue merits attention because about half of traffic deaths occur either in the dark or around dawn or dusk.
As with midsize cars, the IIHS evaluations of small SUVs showed that a vehicle’s price tag doesn’t correspond to the quality of headlights. More modern lighting types, including high-intensity discharge (HID) and LED lamps, and curve-adaptive systems, which swivel in the direction of steering, also are no guarantee of good performance.
The Toyota Prius v is the only midsize car out of 31 evaluated to earn a good rating in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s first-ever headlight ratings.
The best available headlights on 11 cars earn an acceptable rating, while nine only reach a marginal rating. Ten of the vehicles can’t be purchased with anything other than poor-rated headlights.
A vehicle’s price tag is no guarantee of decent headlights. Many of the poor-rated headlights belong to luxury vehicles.
The ability to see the road ahead, along with any pedestrians, bicyclists or obstacles, is an obvious essential for drivers. However, government standards for headlights, based on laboratory tests, allow huge variation in the amount of illumination that headlights provide in actual on-road driving. With about half of traffic deaths occurring either in the dark or in dawn or dusk conditions, improved headlights have the potential to bring about substantial reductions in fatalities.
Three more midsize SUVs achieved good or acceptable ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety in the latest round of small overlap front crash testing, but many models, including three newly rated SUVs from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and one from Hyundai, continue to struggle with the test.
The all-new 2016 Honda Pilot SUV made its global premiere at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show. Reengineered and redesigned in America, the 2016 Honda Pilot delivers more family-friendly utility, more advanced technology and more premium attributes and amenities than ever before, boasting class-leading safety features, fuel efficiency and confident driving dynamics in a thoroughly modern, stylish and sophisticated new package.
The all-new 2016 Pilot, launching at Honda dealerships nationwide this summer, is the third generation of Honda’s three-row midsize SUV to be designed, developed and manufactured in America. Reinforcing 2015 as the “Year of Honda,” Pilot further strengthens Honda’s SUV/CUV triple threat by joining the exceptionally well received 2015 CR-V (2015 Motor Trend SUV of the Year) and greatly anticipated new 2016 HR-V.
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The Chevrolet Equinox and its twin, the GMC Terrain, are the only midsize SUVs out of nine evaluated to earn a good rating in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s small overlap front crash test, which continues to challenge manufacturers more than a year and a half after its introduction.
The Equinox and the Terrain qualify for the Institute’s highest award for 2014, TOP SAFETY PICK+. The Toyota Highlander, a midsize SUV whose acceptable small overlap rating was announced in December, also qualifies. The award is given to vehicles with a good or acceptable small overlap rating, good ratings in four other occupant protection tests, and a rating of basic or higher for front crash prevention.
Three other midsize SUVs in the test group rate poor for small overlap protection, and three are marginal.
A group of moderately priced midsize cars outperformed most of their luxury counterparts in a challenging new frontal crash test conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) on 2013 models. Of the 18 midsize family cars evaluated in the small overlap test, two earn the top rating of good, 11 earn acceptable, three earn marginal, and two are poor.
In contrast, just 3 of 11 midsize luxury and near-luxury cars evaluated in the inaugural round of small overlap tests earned good or acceptable ratings. Midsize moderately priced cars are the second group to be tested. The best performers in this group are the Honda Accord 4-door and Suzuki Kizashi. Both earn a good rating.