MI Car Dealers Announce: SUVs Safer than cars, Minivans Still Overall Safest
SUVs may have been assumed to be safer due to their size, but with the potential rollover rate, fatalities were high. As MI car dealers heard today, SUVs are safer than cars, and it has been confirmed, again, that minivans are the safest vehicles.
DETROIT, M.I. – MI car dealers have heard today that SUVs have been officially redeemed with new technology that has made them safer for drivers and passengers. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducted a study of vehicles during the time period of 2006-2009 to reevaluate the safety versus fatality rates.
Officially, SUVs from 2006-2009 have 50 percent less of a driver fatality rate than cars of the same weight. Anti-rollover technology is the main cause of this tremendous shift in safety.
“The rollover risk in SUVs used to outweigh their size/weight advantage, but that's no longer the case, thanks to electronic stability control,” said Anne McCartt, the institute's senior vice president for research, in a press release. “Pound for pound, SUVs have lower death rates.”
To qualify for the study, SUV models needed at least 100,000 registered vehicle years of model years 2005-2008. A ‘registered vehicle’ is defined as one vehicle registered for one year or two vehicles registered for six months each. According to The Detroit News, “in assessing risk, the study counts the number of years that each model has been on the road and multiplies that by the number of that model's vehicles.”
By using this equation is has been calculated that:
MI car dealers can see that the SUV is now very close behind the minivan as the second safest type of vehicle available on the market.
Rollover Technology Enforced
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced in 2007 that all vehicles had to be equipped with electronic stability control (ESC) by the 2012 model year. By the time the 2008 models were being released, ESC was standard on 65 percent of cars, 96 percent of SUVs and 11 percent of trucks.
The purpose of ESC is to avoid skidding, maintain control if the vehicle swerves and apply brakes to the wheels to stabilize the vehicle to avoid a rollover.
Total cost to add ESC for automakers was estimated in 2007 to be $985 million. This breaks down to $111 per vehicle with antilock brakes and $479 for those vehicles without to add ESC to models. However, the benefits were estimated that 71 percent of passenger car rollovers and 84 percent of SUV rollovers will be prevented. In other words, 5,300 and 9,600 deaths may be prevented along with 238,000 injuries.
Rollover Technology Saves Lives
Final calculations in 2009 showed that 8,300 rollovers had occurred while rollovers had averaged more than 10,000 for years.
The IIHS said in its report that the “ESC reduced the risk of a fatality in a single-vehicle crash by 49 percent and 20 percent in multiple-vehicle crashes. It also lowers the risk of a deadly crash by 33 percent overall, and cuts the risk of a fatal single-vehicle rollover by 73 percent.”
New Rules and Regulations
The NHTSA added more rules to the original 2007 regulation, which include:
MI car dealers will begin to see stronger and safer vehicles as the years continue. With SUVs so close to minivans in terms of safety, more features may eventually bring the two to the same level of safety.
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[Source(s): Detroit News, IIHS]