November 22, 2006

Thirteen vehicles earn Top Safety Pick awards for 2007

2007 Audi A6
The 2007 Audi A6 is the safest new “large” car available today, according to the IIHS. Click image to enlarge

Arlington, Virginia – The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has announced that thirteen vehicles have earned “Top Safety Pick” status for 2007, including four cars, seven SUVs and two minivans. The award recognizes vehicles that do the best job of protecting people in front, side and rear crashes in IIHS tests; new for 2007, winners also have to be equipped with electronic stability control (ESC). Pickup trucks are not included in this round of awards because the IIHS has not yet begun to evaluate their side crashworthiness.

The new ESC requirement is based on IIHS research indicating that the system significantly reduces crash risk, especially the risk of fatal single-vehicle crashes, by helping drivers maintain control of their vehicles during emergency manoeuvres.

“The idea of tightening the criteria for the award is to encourage more vehicle safety improvements,” says IIHS president Adrian Lund. “Last year a car could win with an acceptable rating in the rear test instead of the highest rating of good, and ESC wasn’t considered. Now it’s tougher to win, and some of the 2006 winners don’t meet the criteria for this year’s award, because the manufacturers haven’t improved the head restraints from acceptable to good, or don’t offer ESC.”

The winners were:

  • Large car: Audi A6 (manufactured in December 2006 and later)
  • Midsize car: Audi A4; Saab 9-3/; Subaru Legacy (equipped with optional ESC)
  • Minivan: Hyundai Entourage; Kia Sedona
  • Luxury SUVs: Mercedes M-Class; Volvo XC90
  • Midsize SUVs: Acura RDX; Honda Pilot; Subaru B9 Tribeca
  • Small SUVs: Honda CR-V; Subaru Forester (equipped with optional ESC)

For a complete list of vehicles tested, visit

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