Volvo S60 and XC60 get Superior rating

Volvo Car Group’s leadership in safety technology has been highlighted by the U.S. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). The IIHS recently introduced a new test programme that rates the performance of front crash prevention systems. This is a major development for crash tests in general, as prevention systems are playing an ever-increasing role in vehicle safety. And Volvo is ahead of the game.

Both the Volvo S60 and XC60 received the highest possible rating of ‘Superior’ – and Volvo Cars’ City Safety system is the only standard-specification low-speed crash prevention system in the test, which included 74 vehicles.

“We welcome the fact that the major rating institutes are starting to integrate collision avoidance technologies in their test programmes. This gives consumers a better insight into the advantages of auto brake systems. It will also drive implementation of these technologies through the vehicle fleet,” says Thomas Broberg, Senior Safety Advisor at Volvo Car Group.

The IIHS’ new crash prevention evaluation will be incorporated into the institute’s 2014 Top Safety Pick+ rating.  It includes two tests addressing front-to-rear crashes, one at 20 km/h (12 mph) and the other at 40 km/h (25 mph).  An additional point is given to vehicles with Forward Collision Warning.

The Volvo S60 and XC60 equipped with City Safety and Collision Warning with Full Auto Brake and Pedestrian Detection are among seven models that have received a Superior rating in the new test.

City Safety standard in all Volvo models

Volvo’s low-speed City Safety system is standard in all new Volvo models around the world. Most new Volvos are also available with state-of-the-art technologies that detect, warn and brake automatically for rear other vehicles as well as pedestrians and cyclists.

“The IIHS test focuses on two situations – both with the car approaching a stationary vehicle mock-up. However, it should be emphasised that Volvo Cars’ systems cover a much broader scope of real-life scenarios, including vehicles moving in the same direction, pedestrians and cyclists,” says Thomas Broberg.

So far, Volvo Cars has sold more than one million cars equipped with systems for automatic braking – and the company will continue this pioneering work in the near future by making detection systems work also in darkness for pedestrians and by introducing collision mitigation for animals.

Auto brake results in fewer accidents

The benefits of Volvo’s ground-breaking City Safety technology has been documented in an earlier IIHS/HLDI (Highway Loss Data Institute) report stating a reduction of the collision claim frequency with up to 20 per cent. Data from Swedish insurer If show similar figures with frontal collisions in car following situations being reduced with 23 per cent.

The IIHS study of insurance claims involving a Volvo XC60 shows that City Safety reduces the costs for bodily injury liability with 33 per cent – while property damage liability was lowered by 15 per cent.

“Over the years, the risk of being injured in a Volvo has been reduced continuously and substantially. By introducing new preventive and protective systems, we keep moving towards our aim that by 2020 no one should be injured or killed in a new Volvo. Our long-term vision is that cars should not crash,” says Thomas Broberg.

Previous IIHS Awards

In 2012 the Volvo S60 one of only three vehicles to pass IIHS crash test

Eight out of 11 premium sedans failed an alarming new IIHS (United States’ Insurance Institute) crash test. The Volvo S60 was one of only three that passed.

Only three of the 11 midsize luxury and near-luxury cars evaluated earned good or acceptable ratings in an alarming new crash test conducted by the United States’ Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The new test – a small overlap frontal crash test – is designed to replicate what happens when the front corner of a car collides with another vehicle or an object like a tree or utility pole at 64km/h.

Rather than striking the object dead-on as in most crash tests, the IIHS delivers a more glancing blow that only impacts a quarter of the car’s front end. These types of collisions are particularly dangerous, as the impact will often miss the energy-absorbing structures built into the car’s frame.

“Small overlap crashes are a major source of fatalities,” says IIHS President Adrian Lund. “Nearly every new car performs well in other frontal crash tests conducted by the Institute and the federal government, but we still see more than 10 000 deaths in frontal crashes each year. This new test programme is based on years of analysing real-world frontal crashes and then replicating them in our crash test facility to determine how people are being seriously injured and how cars can be designed to protect them better. We think this is the next step in improving frontal crash protection.”

The Volvo S60 was one of only three vehicles pass this crash test – testament that Volvo always has, and will continue, to excel in the development of safety technology.

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