7 cars get top rating in high-tech safety test

Sep 27, 2013 by The Associated Press

Seven midsize vehicles earned the top rating in a new insurance industry test of high-tech safety features designed to prevent front-end collisions.

The Cadillac ATS and SRX, Subaru Legacy and Outback, Mercedes C-Class and Volvo S60 and XC60 won "superior" ratings in tests by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The institute tested 74 midsize cars and SUVs from the model years 2013 and 2014. Those equipped with front collision-warning and automatic braking systems generally scored better. The systems can either warn the driver or automatically stop the car if they sense a potential collision.

The institute IIHS, a nonprofit research group funded by insurance companies, has pushed federal regulators and to require or offer as an option new safety systems such as antilock brakes. The group also is pushing automakers to bolster front-end crash resistance.

Automakers have been offering the frontal-crash systems on more and more models as the price of the technology falls. The systems use radar, cameras, and computers to spot objects in front of cars and determine if a collision is possible. A driver may be warned to take action, or the system may apply the brakes itself.

The IIHS said its data institute has determined that the devices help drivers avoid frontal crashes, but even so, auto insurance companies generally aren't offering discounts for people who buy them.

Insurance companies say that as the systems become more popular in certain models, will decline. Those models eventually will see discounted rates.

In the tests, six other cars got second-best "advanced" ratings, while 25 received "basic" ratings. Another 36 got no rating because they didn't have the systems or their systems didn't meet the institute's standards.

The institute says the tests will help people decide which features to buy and encourage automakers to adopt the new technology faster.

Explore further: Researchers increase the switching contrast of an all-optical flip-flop

1 /5 (1 vote)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Five new features that could be on your next car

Jul 05, 2013

Cameras that check around the car for pedestrians. Radar that stops you from drifting out of your lane. An engine able to turn off automatically at traffic lights to conserve fuel.

'Virtual bumpers' can help avoid crashes

Sep 19, 2012

Three new Cadillac models, including the ATS sport sedan, have a new advanced safety system that can automatically stop the vehicle in low-speed conditions to help avoid crashes. 

Recommended for you

Intelligent materials that work in space

Oct 23, 2014

ARQUIMEA, a company that began in the Business Incubator in the Science Park of the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, will be testing technology it has developed in the International Space Station. The technology ...

Using sound to picture the world in a new way

Oct 22, 2014

Have you ever thought about using acoustics to collect data? The EAR-IT project has explored this possibility with various pioneering applications that impact on our daily lives. Monitoring traffic density ...

User comments : 0