2019’s Best & Worst Cars in a Crash

2019’s Best & Worst Cars in a Crash
October 27, 2020
2019’s Best & Worst Cars in a Crash

“The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is an independent, nonprofit scientific and educational organization dedicated to reducing the losses — deaths, injuries and property damage — from motor vehicle crashes.”

The IIHS famously rates vehicles of different classes by running various crash tests.  Based on the results, they give vehicles a variety of scores that include:

  • Poor
  • Marginal
  • Acceptable
  • Good

The best and most coveted score is an IIHS Top Safety Pick +.

We are not going to list every car make and model, but we do want to highlight some of the best and worst in each class of vehicle including:

  • Small Cars
  • Midsize Cars
  • Large Cars
  • Small SUVs
  • Midsize SUVs
  • Large SUVs
  • Minivans
  • Small Pickups
  • Large Pickups

So, let’s get started:


Best Small Car:  Honda Insight

No surprise that Honda, a leader in safety and reliability would be listed as a top pick within the small car category.

Worst Small Car:  Fiat 500L

Fix It Again Tony.  That’s what many of us used to joke as the acronym for FIAT.  Fiat has not had the best reputation going back decades.  The crash results on the FIAT 500L further that poor reputation.  It’s a cute, cheap, small car.  Would you want your daughter driving it?


Best Midsize Car:  Mazda 6

Mazda’s are generally well designed, well engineered cars.  And suprise, they make them safe, too.

Worst Midsize Car:  Ford Mustang

We love the Mustang.  It’s fast. It’s fun.  It’s freedom. But let’s not kid ourselves.  The Mustang has never been high on the list in terms of safety.  Sure.  The Mustang below is immensely more survivable than a 1966 Fastback.  But if you’re primary goal is safety, then a Mustang might not be the right choice for you.


Best Large Car:  Toyota Avalon

The Toyota Avalon is in no way considered a sexy sporty car.  it’s just a very good big car.  So good, it’s gets an IIHS Top Safety Pick + rating.

Worst Large Car:  Dodge Charger

Ever wonder why cops who went from the Crown Victoria to the Charger are moving to other vehicles like Ford Explorers?  Well, one of the reasons is that we love our cops.  We want them to be as safe as possible and frankly, the Charger is not the best safety choice.


Best Small SUVs:  Audi Q3

Audi’s engineering and commitment to safety shines with the Audi Q3 and its IIHS Top Safety Pick + rating. 

Worst Small SUVs:  Mitsubishi Outlander Sport

Mitsubishi has not been known for the highest quality control.  Much like Fiat, the Mitsubishi crash test reinforces Mitsubishi’s poor reputation.


Best Midsize SUVs:  Subaru Ascent

We love when marketing and real world testing match up.  Subaru focuses on safety.  And the crash results reinforce Subaru’s marketing.

Worst Midsize SUVs:  Dodge Journey

Dodge and Fiat are both part of Fiat Chrysler.  So are you surprised to see a Dodge at the low end of the scale?


Best Minivan:  Honda Odyssey

Another Honda with high safety scores.  As you can see, some companies really focus on safety and the results show.  And let’s be honest, unlike a Mustang, typical minivan buyers are parents who have kids and want them to be safe.  Clearly, the Honda Odyssey is a great choice.

Worst Minivan:  Dodge Grand Caravan

Are we surprised another Fiat Chrysler product makes the bottom of the list?  Clearly, it seems like it has not been at the top of the priority list.


Best Small Pickup:  Toyota Tacoma

Toyota Tacomas are known for reliability and ruggedness.  And now you can add safety to the list.  Well done Toyota.

Worst Small Pickup:  Nissan Frontier

The Nissan Frontier didn’t fare well and let’s be honest.  It’s one of the oldest designs in this class.  Nissan continues to sell them at an affordable price which, as you know, the longer you sell the vehicle, the more profitable it becomes.  But clearly, the other vehicles in the class have surpassed the Frontier in terms of safety. 


Best Large Pickup:  Ram 1500

Just when you thought you were tired of us bashing Chrysler Fiat for a series of poor performing vehicles on this list, we bring you hope the company is actually paying attention.  The RAM 1500 Crew Cab was named an IIHS Top Safety Rating +.  Yeah.  A Chrysler Fiat product actually got top performer beating out Ford and Chevy.  Hey, if we’re going to bash them when they do something bad, we’ve got to praise them when they do something well.  And RAM has definitely come through with the new RAM 1500 pickup. 

Worst Large Pickup:  Toyota Tundra

As surprised as we are to see a RAM get top marks on safety, we’re surprised to see Toyota at the bottom of this list.  But let’s be honest.  Toyota’s the newbie when it comes to making full size trucks.  They make amazing small pickups with the Tacoma (which got top marks).  But the Tacoma still needs some work to beat Ford, Chevy, and Ram. 

Source:  IIHS.org

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