"Manufacturer advertising often emphasizes the rugged image of SUVs and pickups," said Adrian Lund, president of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, an industry-funded group. "However, the institute's evaluations show seats and head restraints in many models wouldn't do a good job of protecting most people in typical rear impact in everyday commuter traffic."
The six out of forty-four SUVs tested that received top score were (model year) 2006 Ford Freestyle, Honda Pilot, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Land Rover LR3, Subaru Forester ,and the Volvo XC90. Among pickups, the 2005 Ranger (pictured) was the only one to receive a ‘Good’ rating though the institute was puzzled by the design.
Automakers are disputing the IIHS’s results. (See here for another post on the IIHS and side-curtain airbags.)
[Article by the Associated Press via ABC Eyewitness 7]