EVs not crash-test dummies

If you only read the headlines, you wouldn’t get the full picture from recent crash tests of small cars.

What you might have seen in the Detroit News was that EVs and small cars were getting mixed reviews in the tests.

“Only one small car out of 12—BMW’s Mini Cooper Countryman—earned a ‘good’ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety in its latest round of tough, new front-end crash testing,” they reported.

But in fact, the 2014 Chevy Volt with a forward-collision alert option was the only vehicle out of 12 small cars tested to earn the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s 2014 Top Safety Pick+ award. It also received an acceptable overall score in IIHS’ challenging small overlap front crash test.Volt crash test

The results in the most recent round of testing put it ahead of its competitors, both in the electric and small car segments, according to a GM statement.

“The Volt’s crashworthiness performance puts it in the top tier for small car safety,” said Joe Nolan, IIHS senior vice president for vehicle research, quoted in the statement. “GM should be commended for the Volt’s performance in the small overlap front test because this car was designed before that challenging test was introduced.”

(Photo © General Motors.)

The Volt earned a “good” rating – the highest the IIHS awards in its tests – in four of the six categories monitored during the small overlap front test.

“These outstanding results demonstrate our commitment to the highest levels of safety performance in our vehicles,” said Jeff Boyer, vice president of GM Global Vehicle Safety. ”Achieving the IIHS Top Safety Pick + is a key endorsement which is valued by our customers.”

So don’t be a dummy when it comes to reading reports of crash tests, okay?