Safest Cars: No American Made

Early this month, Consumer Reports released its ratings on vehicle reliabilities and Japanese cars got 39 nods on the list. Today, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety announced its ratings on car safety and foreign cars again take the spotlight aways from American cars as no car from US automakers made the cut. This year, according to IIHS, vehicles have to be equipped with the electronic stability control (ESC) system to be even considered for winning the top prize. The reason of making ESC a required feature is that IIHS studies have found that “10,000 fatal crashes per year could be prevented if every vehicle had the safety feature.”

According to IIHS, the safest car awards are given to cars that “do the best job of protecting people in front, side, and rear crashes.” The auto industry actually pays attention to the ratings as they adjusted their designs to address safety problems revealed during the crash tests. Obviously, nobody wants to give consumers the impression of ignoring the safety issues.


Following is the winners of the car safety awards. For more information on ratings, click here.

Large car

  • Audi A6 manufactured in Dec. 2006 and later

Midsize cars

  • Audi A4
  • Saab 9-3
  • Subaru Legacy equipped with optional electronic stability control


  • Hyundai Entourage
  • Kia Sedona

Luxury SUVs

  • Mercedes M class
  • Volvo XC90

Midsize SUVs

  • Acura RDX
  • Honda Pilot
  • Subaru B9 Tribeca

Small SUVs

  • Honda CR-V
  • Subaru Forester equipped with optional electronic stability control

In addition, IIHS also has a rating on rear protection for vehicles that have good front and side crash ratings:

Acceptable rear protection

  • Audi A3
  • BMW 3-series 4dr
  • Lexus IS 250/350

Marginal rear protection

  • Acura TL
  • Honda Odyssey
  • Lexus ES 350
  • Lexus GS 350
  • Toyota Camry
  • Toyota FJ Cruiser
  • Toyota Prius
  • Toyota RAV4

Poor rear protection

  • Honda Accord 4dr
  • Infiniti M35
  • Nissan Quest
  • Toyota Avalon
  • Toyota Sienna

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2 Responses to “Safest Cars: No American Made”

  1. Tracy |  Dec 13, 2006 at 11:56 am

    This result greatly reflects why domestic automakers are badly ailing at present, as safety aspect is the primary consideration for most (if not all) car buyers.