Small Car Shows Mixed Results In Tougher IIHS Side Collision Test

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety sent 11 small cars and crossovers through a new, more challenging side-crash test. Two of them received a Good rating, five Received, and four received a Bad rating – the lowest possible rating from the agency.

The table below shows the results:

Vehicle Score In New Side Impact Test
2023 Mazda 3 Hatchback Good
2023 Mazda 3 Sedan Good
Honda Civic Hatchback 2022 Acceptable
Honda Civic Sedan 2022 Acceptable
Nissan Sentra 2022 Acceptable
Toyota Corolla Hatchback 2022 Acceptable
Toyota Corolla Sedan 2022 Acceptable
2022 Kia Forte Poor
2022-23 Subaru Crosstrek Poor
2022-23 Subaru Impreza Sedan Poor
2022-23 Subaru Impreza Wagon Poor

The modified side crash test features a 4,200 pound barrier that hits the vehicle at 37 miles per hour. The previous version weighed 3,300 pounds and moved 31 mph. The IIHS changed things after finding that nearly a quarter of deaths from side collisions occurred in more severe crashes than the initial evaluation.

To understand how much more challenging this new test will be, it’s worth noting that all of these vehicles will get a Good rating in the initial evaluation.

“Smaller, lower-end vehicles are at a disadvantage when hit by the new test barrier, which is a more realistic representation of the front end of a typical modern SUV than our old barrier. Obviously, some manufacturers have found a way to provide adequate protection. in an accident like this for even a small car passenger,” said IIHS Senior Research Engineer Becky Mueller.

In 2023, a Good or Acceptable score in a more stringent side impact collision is required to earn the IIHS Top Safety Pick award. A Good Rating is one of the Top Safety Pick+ requirements.

In August 2022, IIHS put seven midsize cars and crossovers through this test. The Subaru Outback is the only one with a Good rating. Two models received an Acceptable score. One is Marginal, and three is Poor.

In October 2022, the agency evaluated the Ford Mustang Mach-E in a new side-impact test. It received a Good rating because the sensor indicated a low risk of injury to the doll.

The IIHS is making its awards harder to earn in 2023. In addition to more stringent side impact tests, there’s a new nighttime pedestrian accident prevention test and adjustments to how the agency rates headlights.

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