iihs safety pick awards
  • Image Credit: Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

IIHS 2015 midsize SUV small-overlap front crash test

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety completed its latest round of small-overlap front crash tests.  This time, the institute put seven midsize SUVs from the 2015 model year under the microscope, and the results were mixed. This analysis is often a hard one for automaker’s to get right, though, because just 25 percent of the front of a vehicle has to protect drivers in a 40-mile-per-hour collision. It’s supposed to replicate an accident with an object like a tree or pole, and the IIHS then rates each performance as Good, Acceptable, Marginal, or Poor.

blue 2015 nissan murano mountains

2015 Nissan Murano

The 2015 Nissan Murano aced the IIHS small-overlap crash test and scored Good in all of the criteria. The institute praised the airbags' ability to control the dummy's head in the evaluation. The Murano was also the only model in this group to earn a Top Safety Pick Plus award because of the available front crash prevention system.

blue 2015 ford flex house
  • Image Credit: Ford

2015 Ford Flex

The 2015 Ford Flex earned an Acceptable overall rating in the small-overlap test. While the model showed Good scores in preventing driver injuries, the structure only received a Marginal ranking. However, the Flex still qualifies as a Top Safety Pick.

blue 2015 jeep wrangler unlimited forest
  • Image Credit: Jeep

2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

The 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited scored Good overall in the small-overlap test, but the IIHS wasn't willing to give it a Top Safety Pick award. This is because in side and rear crashes the model only offers Marginal protection.
silver 2015 hyundai santa fe trees
  • Image Credit: Hyundai

2015 Hyundai Santa Fe

The 2015 Hyundai Santa Fe managed only a Marginal overall rating in the IIHS crash test. The biggest problem with the SUV was the structure that should have protected the driver. According to the IIHS, the lower portion of the door hinge came 10.24 inches into the passenger compartment, and the dummy's head slid off the front airbag.
silver 2015 jeep cherokee on the road
  • Image Credit: Jeep

2015 Jeep Cherokee

The 2015 Jeep Cherokee also scored a Marginal rating in this small-overlap test. The IIHS noted that the lower door hinge came 8.27 inches into the cabin, and the instrument panel moved about another 5.9 inches. The deformation allowed the dummy's head to barely contact the front airbag, and the side airbag didn't deploy.
silver 2015 dodge durango
  • Image Credit: Dodge

2015 Dodge Durango

The 2015 Dodge Durango scored Marginal overall, as well. As with the other models with low scores, the major problem was intrusion into the passenger compartment. In this case, the parking brake moved far enough inward to gouge the dummy's lower left leg. The front airbag did keep contact with the head, though.
red 2015 dodge journey in a field
  • Image Credit: Dodge

2015 Dodge Journey

The 2015 Dodge Journey was the worst performer of this group by scoring a Poor overall rating for the small-overlap test. There was serious intrusion into the passenger compartment, and the parking brake tore into the dummy's leg. The head also slid off the front airbag, and side airbag didn't deploy.

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