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List of 2017’s Safest Vehicles Published

Toyota Prius

Choosing the car that will keep your family safest isn’t always straightforward. It can be difficult to determine which safety features can truly make a life-or-death difference if you’re in an accident, and whether spending more on a car will always result in greater protection. In order to assist buyers in making difficult decisions about safety, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) publishes an annual list of vehicles that it has rated as being the safest cars or trucks available on the US market. That list has recently been released for 2017’s vehicle models.

IIHS’ list is split between vehicles deemed to be a “Top Safety Pick” and those labeled as an even more elite “Top Safety Pick+.” The safety group determines which vehicles make it to these lists by subjecting the vehicles to a number of crash tests, such as a front-crash test, moderate-overlap front-crash test, side-crash test, and roof-strength test, and rating their performance in each on a scale from “poor” to “good.” Additionally, IIHS will periodically incorporate new features which must be present for a car to earn a “Top Safety Pick” rating. For example, last year the safety group began requiring that cars offer an automatic emergency braking system in order to be named a “Top Safety Pick+.”

This year, IIHS added an evaluation of headlight quality. According to Adrian Lund, the president of IIHS, the feature had long gone ignored by auto manufacturers. “Automakers have not focused enough attention on whether or not headlamps are aimed such that they light up the road for the driver ahead of them,” noted Lund. The IIHS assessment of headlights looked at whether headlights provide adequate illumination, and whether they produced glare. Only seven vehicle models received a “good” rating for their headlights.

These lists can have a substantial impact on car sales, and for that reason, automakers are often quick to adopt the features listed by IIHS as critical for a good safety rating in order to ensure that their vehicles are included on upcoming lists. “By making this award more difficult to earn each year, the IIHS has been very effective in encouraging automakers to make continuous improvements to car safety,” notes Consumer Reports. This year, IIHS selected 44 vehicles as a “Top Safety Pick” and 38 as a “Top Safety Pick+.” Models included on the list included the Toyota Prius, the Audi A4, the Hyundai Elantra, the Volvo S60, and the Honda Ridgeline pickup.

If you have been injured in an accident in New Jersey and would like legal help in determining if you have a claim for damages, contact the knowledgeable and determined personal injury attorney Andrew R. Jacobs for a consultation, at 973-532-9681.

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