Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Tesla Model Y and Ford Mustang Mach-E Earn Top Safety Ratings in Latest IIHS Midsize SUV Crash Tests

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The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) has recently released its latest round of midsize SUV crash test ratings, and the results are mixed. Out of the thirteen midsize SUVs tested, only four received the top rating from the IIHS. The Ford Mustang Mach-E, Tesla Model Y, Ford Explorer, and Subaru Ascent were the only vehicles to receive a “good” rating, while the Chevrolet Traverse, Toyota Highlander, and Volkswagen Atlas were given “marginal” ratings.

The IIHS found that most midsize SUVs offer “inadequate front crash protection for passengers seated in the rear,” with six of the thirteen vehicles tested receiving a “poor” rating. These include the Honda Pilot, Hyundai Palisade, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Wrangler 4-door, Mazda CX-9, and Nissan Murano.

See also: Tesla Model Y Earns Top Safety Pick+ Rating from IIHS Despite More Stringent Standards

The testing process involved using a Hybrid III dummy that represents a small woman or a 12-year-old child and positioning it in the second row behind the driver. The IIHS uses specific metrics that focus on the injuries that occur most often to occupants in the back seat.

According to the IIHS president, David Harkey, the vehicles tested did not fail to offer excellent protection for the driver, but “only a handful extend that level of safety to the back seat.” The Mustang Mach-E was the only car to receive the top rating across all eleven categories, while the Model Y received top marks in ten categories, including the overall rating, but only an “Acceptable” grade in the category of rear passenger restraints and kinetics.

The Model Y received an “Acceptable” rating as “the rear dummy’s head approached the front seatback, which increases the risk of head injuries,” according to the IIHS. However, the Model Y is still one of the few select vehicles to receive the title of Top Safety Pick+, which only a handful of vehicles have obtained.

See also: Hyundai Ioniq 5 electric crossover receives IIHS Top Safety Pick+ crash test

The IIHS has made the requirements for the Top Safety Pick awards stronger this year, demanding better side crash protection and improved pedestrian crash prevention systems and eliminating subpar headlights from the ability to qualify for the award.

The IIHS senior research engineer, Marcy Edwards, believes that “zeroing in on weaknesses in rear seat safety is an opportunity to make big gains in a short time since solutions that are already proven to work in the front can successfully be adapted for the rear.” The four “good” ratings in this round of testing show that some automakers are already doing it.

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