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Crash Tests Safety Ratings

By: Venton D. Blandin
By: Venton D. Blandin

April 17, 2006

The results are in as the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety in Ruckersville handed out its ratings on safety when it comes to small cars.

If you want to cruise in a safe ride, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says it should stand up to accidents, from all sides.

In the latest crash tests, that's just what the Kia Sedona did making it a top safety pick, and the only minivan to ever do so.

"The Kia Sedona provides good protection in frontal crashes, rear crashes, and also side impacts, so that's good news for families shopping for that," said Adrian Lund, the President of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

General Motors' minivan, the Uplander, got some of the lowest marks. It did not perform well in side tests. Its rear seat actually detached from the car in the test with optional side airbags.

General Motors responded to the results saying, "In the 10 years this basic structure has been in use for these vans and their predecessors, we know of no cases in which a rear seat became detached in a side impact."

The automaker says the test does not warrant concern, but the Uplander's design will still be improved.

If you're in the market for a safe small car instead, Subaru's Impreza got the top safety pick award.

In the Institute's first test of a hybrid, the Toyota Prius performed well in frontal crash tests. In side impact tests it did well with optional side airbags, but poorly without.

Also giving families a few more safer choices are, the Honda Odyssey, Toyota Sienna, and Nissan Quest. Those minivans also got good marks from the institute.


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