Each year, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) releases its list of top safety picks for domestic and foreign vehicles. It recently released its picks for 2015.
Vehicle Crash Statistics
Before we get to the list, let’s take a look at some statistics on vehicle accidents. Notably, fatalities from car collisions continue to decline year over year. Compared to 33,561 fatalities in 2012, there were 32,719 accident-related deaths in 2013. Comparing vehicle years, 2011 model-year vehicles caused fewer deaths than their 2008 counterparts—dropping from 48 fatalities per million vehicles to 28 per million on average. A record nine 2011 models have a driver death rate of zero. These included a mix of luxury models (such as the Audi A4 AWD) and standard brands (the Kia Sorento 2WD).
These figures are consistent with the IIHS’s findings that new cars are – for the most part – considerably safer than older models. This is due to significant technological advances that are both (i) reducing the number of accidents, and (ii) providing greater impact protection when collisions do occur.
IIHS Top Safety Picks for 2015
Still, not all vehicles are created equal. The following are some of the IIHS’s top safety picks for 2015 (all vehicles listed are 2015 model year):
- Acura MDX, RLX and TLX
- Audi A3
- Chevrolet Trax, Spark and Volt
- Dodge Dart
- Ford C-Max Hybrid and Focus
- Honda Civic (multiple models), Fit, and Odyssey
- Mazda 3 and CX-5
- Mercedes E Class and M Class
- Volvo S60, S80, V60 and XC60
Other manufacturers with models making the list include: Buick, Chrysler, Hyundai, Infiniti, Kia, Lexus, Mini, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Toyota, Scion, Subaru, and Volkswagen.
Least Safe Vehicles According to IIHS
On the other end of the spectrum are the least-safe vehicles according to IIHS. This was measured using the number of deaths per million registered vehicles. The three least safe vehicles are:
- 2011 Kia Rio (149 fatalities per million registered vehicles)
- Nissan Versa (130 fatalities per million registered vehicles)
- Hyundai Accent (120 fatalities per million registered vehicles)
It is interesting to note that each of these manufacturers also produced models that made the top of the IIHS’s safety list.
How to Choose a Safe Vehicle
While consumers should always do their research before purchasing a vehicle, the IIHS’s statistics shed light on some trends among safer vehicles. For example, SUVs and large four-door sedans tend to fare better than smaller vehicles. Models with four-wheel drive also fared better overall. However, these rules are not absolutes, so always take care to learn about your specific vehicle before making a buying decision.
Experienced Representation for Auto Accidents in Missouri and Illinois
The attorneys at Carey, Danis & Lowe represent auto accident victims throughout Missouri and Illinois. To speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer about your case, contact us today.