Test indicates small cars won’t perform well in car accidents

If you’ve ever seen a small, compact car zipping down the highway and thought that it didn’t look quite safe or that it wouldn’t hold up in a car accident, you may be right.

A study that was released earlier this year showed small cars did not perform well at all during safety tests done by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Of 11 small cars tested, six of the cars received a “Poor” rating. The issue could impact insurance rates. It could mean these small cars could result in more injuries and/or fatalities in a car accident — a factor that Houston’s car accident attorney Kirkendall Dwyer LLP would have to consider in examining a case.

The test mimicked a “small overlap” car accident, which accounts for about 25 percent of serious and fatal car wrecks, according to officials.

CNN reported the following regarding the cars tested included and their ratings:

  • Nissan Versa – Poor
  • Toyota  Prius – Poor
  • Hyundai Accent – Poor
  • Mitsubishi Mirage – Poor
  • Chrysler Fiat 500 – Poor
  • Honda  Fit – Poor
  • Mazda2 – Marginal
  • Kia Rio – Marginal
  • Toyota Yaris – Marginal
  • Ford Fiesta – Marginal
  • Chevrolet Spark – Acceptable

Drivers of small cars may not want to go into a full panic. The study is just one simulation where the car didn’t perform well. Automakers have responded and appear to be taking the test seriously. Honda and Mazda have recently unveiled a redesign of their cars; Nissan, Hyundai and Toyota are reportedly reviewing conclusions of the study. Ford said it believes its vehicle is safe.

When shopping for a vehicle, you want to take a look at the entire picture of the car’s safety ratings and features to have an idea of how well it would perform in a car wreck.

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