Autobrake Feature Helps Models Earn Better Crash Ratings

By | May 29, 2014
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is committed to making sure today's vehicles are safe for consumers thanks to the tests it conducts. The newest test, the front crash prevention test, has already prompted automakers to improve braking capabilities and utilize new technologies. Out of all 2014 model year vehicles, 21 of 41 cars and SUVs will have earned an advanced or higher rating in the latest IIHS tests. "We are already seeing improvements from automakers since the initial launch of our ratings last September. BMW and Lexus, for example, have added more braking capability to their systems, which has paid off in higher ratings," said David Zuby, IIHS executive vice president and chief research officer, in a statement. While large family and luxury cars may have made up the majority of the tested vehicles, the IIHS also threw in some midsize luxury and near luxury vehicles, along with a few midsize luxury and midsize SUVs. Out of that group, only four vehicles earned a perfect score when equipped with specific options, including the 2014 BMW 5 Series, 2014 BMW X5, 2015 Hyundai Genesis, and the 2014 Mercedes-Benz E-Class. But the IIHS didn't leave out the consumer cars. Toyota, Buick, Chevrolet, and Dodge were among the brands tested. Front crash prevention systems, or autobrake systems can use different features to sense when the vehicle gets too close to another. Sensors like backup cameras, radar, or lasers help to detect potential accidents and send a message to pre-charge the brake in the event the driver brakes suddenly. However, some advanced systems will actually brake for the driver. Source: IIHS