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More vehicles receive IIHS Top Safety Pick award

If you have been paying attention to commercials for retailers, chances are that you know that they are offering compelling and competitive discounts for 2015 models. However, the commercials probably have not touted whether the car has won any awards for safety. If not, just wait; the accolades are coming.

After all, a record number of vehicles were awarded the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) Top Safety Pick award. This year, 71 vehicles achieved this honor, up from 39 last year. The IIHS also honored vehicles in the top safety tier: Top Safety Pick+.

Essentially, the criteria for the higher designation had not changed. Vehicles that received a good or acceptable rating with crashworthiness evaluations (roof strength, head restraints and moderate overlap front). However, vehicles that achieved these designations, and that included a front crash prevention system that received an advanced or superior rating received the additional designation.

In a year where so many vehicles were recalled due to defects, the nominations were quite a milestone. Vehicles are not legally required to pass IIHS tests, but the testing can point out potential flaws and defects that could put consumers in danger. Because of this, it appears that manufacturers take crash test results seriously and make changes to models to accommodate those needs.

While improvements to crashworthiness is definitely a benefit (as lives could be saved), drivers are still charged with using reasonable care while behind the wheel. Failing to do so could lead an offending driver liable for an accident. 

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