The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety or IIHS has started using the small overlap frontal crash test in evaluating the overall safety features of all the luxury and the conventional car models in the market.
The small overlap frontal crash test tries to replicate the events that take place when the car’s frontal corners collide with another vehicle or other objects such as a tree or a pole. This could be regarded as an important safety crash test simulation since frontal crashes are pointed out as the main cause of about 10,000 deaths each year and knowing which of the existing car models in the US automobile market have stronger front corners could possibly lower down the number of deaths attributed to frontal collisions.
Upon using the small overlap frontal crash test, the IIHS has realized that only three of the eleven near luxury and mid-size car models that they have tested were able to obtain higher marks. The IIHS have noted that the 2012 Acura TL and the 2012 Volvo S60 got the best ratings. The Volvo S60 was proven to be structurally safe while the Acura TL was very resilient.
Unfortunately, a number of popular car models such as the Lexus IS 350 and 250, the 2012 Mercedes Benz C-Class, and the Audi A4 obtained the poorest ratings. Due to this realization, the car makers who have been producing the models that were mentioned earlier are starting to get worried since the relatively lower safety ratings that those vehicles have obtained might affect the demand for such cars thereby forcing them to incur bigger loses.
Other models such as the Acura TSX, Lincoln MKZ, Volkswagen CC, and the BMW 3 Series achieved the “marginal” ratings while the 2012 Infiniti G obtained the “acceptable” ratings. Although these models were able to pass the small overlap frontal crash test by getting the passing rates, the IIHS strongly recommends that their manufacturers should try to improve the frontal safety features each vehicle and be able to attain higher ratings when these are subjected to the same simulation once again.