IIHS Begins Rating Forward Crash Avoidance Technologies

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Recently, we brought you word of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s introduction of a new test designed to determine how well a vehicle would fare in a front overlap crash (where the corner of an automobile is the leading contact point with another vehicle or object).  But that’s not the only change that the IIHS has implemented when ranking vehicles.

The IIHS is now testing how the various frontal collision avoidance systems available in higher-end automobiles do when confronted by an imminent crash.  These systems have grown in popularity as of late for their ability to help a driver avoid a crash they may not otherwise have been able to stop in time for.  Some systems merely warn a driver that it’d be a good time to hit the brakes, while others go further, taking over braking power when it appears the driver isn’t going to do so themselves.

The highest rating available was superior, and only seven of the automobiles tested (two Subaru, two Cadillac, one Mercedes, and two Volvo models) were able to attain that distinction.  For those vehicles that were still able to slow down an automobile even if they didn’t do as well as the vehicles that obtained a Superior ranking, an Advanced rating was given.  15 vehicles achieved this.

The IIHS’s chief research officer noted that knowing which of these systems are worth a consumer’s time is important given the added cost, which can oftentimes be more than $1,000.