2 min read
14 May


When it comes to choosing a vehicle, safety should be at the forefront of our minds. After all, our lives and the lives of our loved ones depend on it. Enter the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)—a beacon of knowledge and research in the automotive world. In this article, we’ll explore what the IIHS does, how they evaluate vehicles, and which cars earn their coveted safety awards. Buckle up, because we’re about to take a crash course in safety! 

As an independent, nonprofit scientific and educational organization, the IIHS is dedicated to reducing deaths, injuries, and property damage from motor vehicle crashes. Here’s what you need to know:

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)

1. Mission and Purpose

The IIHS aims to enhance road safety through research, evaluation, and education. Their primary goals include:

  • Reducing fatalities and injuries resulting from motor vehicle crashes.
  • Evaluating vehicle safety features and crashworthiness.
  • Informing consumers, policymakers, and safety professionals.

2. Vehicle Ratings and Awards

The IIHS conducts rigorous tests to evaluate vehicle safety. Here are the key aspects of their evaluations:

Crash Protection

  • The IIHS assesses how well a vehicle protects its occupants during a crash.
  • Ratings include “Good,” “Acceptable,” “Marginal,” and “Poor.”

Crash Prevention and Mitigation

  • The IIHS evaluates crash avoidance systems, including automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assistance, and adaptive headlights.
  • Vehicles that excel in these areas receive awards.

3. Top Safety Picks and Top Safety Pick+ Awards

The IIHS recognizes vehicles that demonstrate exceptional safety performance. The awards are based on crash test results and crash prevention features:

Top Safety Pick (TSP)

  • Vehicles earn the TSP award if they achieve “Good” ratings in crash tests across various categories.
  • They must also have effective crash prevention systems.

Top Safety Pick+ (TSP+)

  • TSP+ vehicles meet the TSP criteria and additionally have “Good” or “Acceptable” headlights.
  • These vehicles represent the highest level of safety.

4. How to Find Safe Vehicles

Consumers can explore IIHS ratings and awards on their website1. Here’s how:

a. Vehicle Ratings

  • Visit the IIHS Vehicle Ratings page.
  • Search for vehicles by make, model, year, size, and type.
  • Compare loss information for insurance purposes.

b. 2024 Top Safety Picks

5. Conclusion

The IIHS plays a crucial role in promoting road safety. By evaluating vehicles and providing valuable information, they empower consumers to make informed choices. Remember to prioritize safety when selecting your next vehicle!  

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