The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is evolving their widely-known moderate overlap front evaluation test to bridge the gap between protecting both front and rear occupants. In the initial tests, only two of fifteen small SUV models – Ford Escape and Volvo XC40 – passed by achieving a “Good” rating in terms of protection provided to those sitting in its backseat.

The Audi Q3, Subaru Forester, and the Nissan Rogue rated marginal while the Toyota RAV4 earned an acceptable rating. Nine other vehicles were given a poor rating, those vehicles were the Buick Encore, Honda CR-V, Honda HR-V, Chevrolet Equinox, Hyundai Tucson, Jeep Compass, Jeep Renegade, Mazda CX-5 and Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross.

David Harkey, the IIHS President, said “Thanks to automakers’ improvements, drivers in most vehicles are nearly 50 percent less likely to be killed in a frontal crash today than they were 25 years ago. Our updated test is a challenge to manufacturers to bring those same benefits to the back seat. The stellar performance of the Escape and XC40 shows it’s possible.”

All 15 vehicles earned good ratings in the initial assessment, showcasing sturdy frames and dependable restraints that protect the driver from hitting hard surfaces inside their car and minimizing other potential injuries. Although, when additional measurements were used for testing purposes, most of them showed inadequate protection for an occupant sitting in the back seat – specifically concerning their head and neck which are known to be more vulnerable.

Read the full report from IIHS website by clicking here:

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View The Results

(Photo and description provided by IIHS website)

Buick Encore: The rear passenger dummy’s head came close to contacting the front seatback, which increases the risk of head injuries.

(Photo and description provided by IIHS website)

Mazda CX-5: The rear passenger dummy’s lap belt moved from the ideal position on the pelvis onto the abdomen, increasing the risk of abdominal injuries.

(Photo and description provided by IIHS website)

Jeep Renegade: During rebound, the rear passenger dummy’s head moved outside of the side curtain airbag and hit the C-pillar hard. The head protection is inadequate and puts the head at risk of possible contact with outside objects.