Every year the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety tracks driver fatalities in various car models. Shockingly, no driver was killed in a crash in a record nine (9) 2011 model-year vehicles!
The death rate for drivers of these cars is 0%:
- Audi A4 4WD
- Honda Odyssey Minivan
- Kia Sorento 2WD
- Lexus RX 350 4WD
- Mercedes-Benz GL-Class 4WD
- Subaru Legacy 4WD
- Toyota Highlander Hybrid 4WD
- Toyota Sequoia 4WD
- Volvo XC90 4WD
But the worst vehicles had death rates of 46 or more per million miles. The Kia Rio, which had an overall death rate of 149, was the most deadly in this study.
IIHS has changed their crash testing to be more realistic. Most car accidents are not full on types where a car hit a wall squarely. Those spread the energy of the impact out much better, and people survive them more frequently.
However, in the newer so-called “offset crashes” the car hits a pole or a vehicle at an angle, concentrating the forces in a smaller area. Car manufacturers like Toyota, Honda and Volvo have clearly stepped up to meet that challenge.
Deaths are falling across the board. For 2011 models, for example, there were 28 driver deaths per million miles, a huge decrease from 48 in 2008-2009 models.
With car safety increasing like this, it may be that accident lawyers may one day be out of work!
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