Continuing from IIHS Rates Crash Avoidance Systems (Part 1), below we will take a look at the IIHS’ findings regarding how safe and effective crash avoidance technologies are and whether they are worth the extra expense.

How the IIHS Tested Crash Avoidance Systems

To test the safety of various crash avoidance technologies, the IIHS simulated a crash in which a vehicle would slam into the back of a stopped SUV. They did this by creating a large cloth box and propelling the vehicles to be tested into that box. The front crash prevention systems of more than 70 cars were tested in this manner.

Based on the performance of the crash avoidance system, the IIHS gave out the following ratings:

  • Superior – the highest rating, which was given to systems that prevented a collision entirely or were able to slow the vehicle enough to substantially reduce the severity of the crash
  • Advanced – the second highest rating, which was given if the system reduced the impact speed by at least 5 mph
  • Basic – the lowest rating, which was given when the system only had a minimal (if any) effect on preventing the crash or the severity of it.

The IIHS’ Findings: What Systems Are Worth the Expense

According to the IIHS, the following vehicles received a Superior rating:

  • Subaru Legacy
  • Subaru Outback
  • Cadillac ATS and SRX
  • Mercedes-Benz C-Class
  • Volvo S60 and XC60.

Advanced ratings were given to the following vehicles:

  • Audi A4 and Q5 SUV
  • Acura MDX
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee
  • Mazda6
  • Lexus ES.

Both the Toyota Prius V wagon and the Infiniti JX35 were among the vehicles that received a Basic rating.

The bottom line, according to the IIHS, is that safety is worth paying for but that consumers should do their research before believing car makers’ claims about how effective their crash avoidance technologies actually are.

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