For the sake of safer cars, it sounds like the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration could be moving to create stricter crash tests that are similar to (and potentially even more rigorous) than what the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently instituted. In an interview with Automotive News, chief NHTSA administrator David Strickland said that the agency is looking into adding a new offset test as well as an angled impact test.

A small overlap test just recently became a part of the barrage of crash tests performed by IIHS where only 25-percent of the vehicle tested makes contact with a barrier, and Strickland said this is "very similar" to the test being considered by NHTSA. The government agency's current frontal crash tests, as shown above with the five-star-rated Buick Verano, consists of the car hitting a wall head-on, so it isn't clear how much overlap would be considered small for this new test. Another new scenario being investigated is called the oblique test, which involves the test subject hitting a barrier at a fixed angle rather than straight on. Neither test figures to be in use for at least the next couple years or so, but they would undoubtedly make it much harder for cars to receive a five-star crash rating.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 32 Comments
      Myself
      • 1 Year Ago
      European crash tests use partial overlap, if I'm not mistaken.
      mary.keana
      • 1 Year Ago
      Not good new for Toyota and Lexus.
      Brewman15
      • 1 Year Ago
      How about the NHTSA look at evaluating the skill and competency of those squishy, fleshy things behind the steering wheel and work on improving that rather than constantly imposing stricter regulations for the big metal things that they control?
      2 wheeled menace
      • 1 Year Ago
      Cars will only get more expensive and heavier as a result. I guess if you want to eventually force people out of cars, this is one way to do it.
        Daniel D
        • 1 Year Ago
        @2 wheeled menace
        I don't but those people in the black helicopters do. They also want your guns.
      over9000
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is why cars get heavier and uglier. President Obama should sign executive orders to get rid of NHTSA and let the free market buy what they think is safe.
        mycommentemail
        • 1 Year Ago
        @over9000
        I agree. Why should there be any safety testing at all? I can decide what is safe by doing my own safety testing. If my wife and child are killed by someone t-boning them and the car isn't up to snuff, well then I'll know to buy a different car the next time. Problem solved. Why can't everyone see the logic of it?
          mycommentemail
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mycommentemail
          Dang dude! You are incredible! You just looked at the car and determined it was safe! Now that is badass. All those morons who wasted millions on finite element analysis to determine whether a car was going to be safe or not. All those bodies in white that were crushed by the manufacturers to determine how they would survive an accident. What a waste. You just examined the vehicle down at the dealership and pronounced it safe (even though safety doesn't figure into your vehicle purchases). I know when I am in the presence of greatness. Alas, I don't have magic computer xray vision and can't pronounce whether a car would do well in an accident or not. Maybe next time I am in the market for a new car (and safety is a concern of mine, especially with regard to my child) you could come by and give me the johnbravo6 safety rating? If not, I'm going to have to rely on things like the NHTSA and Insurance Institute to do the testing for me. Oh. And that is what the article was about! Huh. Imagine that. :)
          mycommentemail
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mycommentemail
          Life? So you have crash tested a volvo yourself? Otherwise I would suspect that you either simply buy into whatever their advertising tells you. OR You are using these very same crash test results (or something similar) to inform your opinion.
          Daniel D
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mycommentemail
          The only problem I see with this is we really need to make Polygamy legal again, as you might kill several wives and children, before you find the ideal car.
          johnbravo6
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mycommentemail
          "Faith"? They show me their product, and I decided it was plenty safe based on my examination of the vehicle. You put your faith in the lord, government, and they show you some little yellow stars. I at least go down to the volvo dealer and look at the car and make my own assertion. Didn't buy one regardless. In fact, the cars I have bought, safety was never an issue in my purchase decision.
          mycommentemail
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mycommentemail
          Huh? Are you sure you are even posting on the right thread? I merely asked how you knew that Volvo makes safe cars. I assumed that you either: Took it on faith that when they advertised their cars as safe that they were speaking the truth (possibility 1) OR You have personally crash tested a Volvo and found that it is safe (possibility 2) OR You learned about the results of some other crash tests that indicated that these cars are safe (possibility 3) Which is it?
          johnbravo6
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mycommentemail
          Life. I get up from the computer every so often.
      Louis MacKenzie
      • 1 Year Ago
      I think we should start banning these insurance guys instead of the hand guns.
      S.
      • 1 Year Ago
      Just stay home. It's safer to not venture out into the scary world.
      Brian
      • 1 Year Ago
      The car in the photo is actually one of the nicer Veranos I've seen.
      xspeedy
      • 1 Year Ago
      Just put full crash cages in cars with race seats and four point harnesses and be done with it.
      Brian
      • 1 Year Ago
      Eventually we will be driving NASCARs. Walk away from 200mph rollovers without a scratch. $150,000 and no air conditioning.
      Scr
      • 1 Year Ago
      They need to add an offset vehicle on vehicle simulation test using an analog sled that mimics something like a toyota camry in weight and energy absorption. If you've seen those IIHS tests of the Smart, the Yaris and the Fit crashed agaisnt their manufacturer's mid size, you'd know why. What was good in the staitc offset barrier test failed miserably in the vehicle on vehicle test. Probably the most realistic test there is and doesn't give the false sense of safety of only comparing vehicles in the same class, but agaisnt the most statistically likely scenario.
      GasMan
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is an escalating arms race. You up-armor your tank so I have to add steel to mine. Pretty soon we are all driving around in giant steel boxes that you can't maneuver or see out of. My wife drives a new G37. It is very safe in a crash but I swear you can't see a thing out of that car, making accidents more likely. My '76 BMW is all glass and very nimble, helping me avoid an accident. On the other hand, if I screw up I probably die.
    • Load More Comments