The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has announced that the 2006 Subaru Legacy has been awarded its new ‘Gold’ designation for occupant protection in the mid-sized car category. To win the elite Gold award, a vehicle must have earned good ratings in the Institute’s frontal offset and side impact crash tests, and seat/head restraints must also be rated good for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts. ‘Good’ is the highest rating awarded by the IIHS.
The winning vehicles were chosen from among current models subjected to stringent testing by the IIHS, which exceeds the regulations and standards set by government safety agencies. Frontal crashworthiness evaluations are based on results of frontal offset crash tests at 40 mph and measure intrusion into the occupant compartment, the effectiveness of the restraint system, and the effects of the crash on a Hybrid III dummy in the driver seat. Overall side evaluation is based on performance in a crash test in which the side of the vehicle is struck by a moving barrier representing the front end of a pickup or SUV, and measures the effects of the impact on instrumented dummies in the driver and passenger seat. Rear crash protection starts by measuring head restraint geometry, and seats with good or acceptable restraint geometry are tested dynamically using a dummy that measures forces on the neck. For complete information on the tests and the results, visit the IIHS web site at www.iihs.org.
“Every Subaru is designed and built to offer the driver and passengers the highest possible levels of active and passive safety”, said said Katsuhiro Yokoyama, president, chairman and chief executive officer of Subaru Canada, Inc. “In addition to the excellent passive safety protection measured by the IIHS, every Subaru is also equipped with the outstanding active safety of our Symmetrical All-Wheel Driving System as standard equipment – because the ideal solution is to avoid a crash altogether”.
The new IIHS ‘Top Safety Pick’ designation, with its Gold and Silver levels of achievement, replace the ‘best pick’ designations the IIHS formerly awarded for performance in each separate crash test.
“Now that we’re rating vehicles’ front, side, and rear crashworthiness, based on test performance, we decided to give consumers an overall assessment based on all three tests. These Top Safety Picks are replacing our previous ‘best pick’ designations that were awarded separately for front and side crash test performance,” said IIHS President Brian O’Neill. “The new awards mean consumers can compare cars’ ratings more quickly and easily. They won’t have to review multiple sets of test results separately.”
The foundation of Subaru’s passive safety (occupant protection) is the Ring Frame Reinforced structure, with a front-end structure that disperses collision energy in three directions. This structure, which is an exclusive Subaru design, forms a series of “rings” around the passenger compartment, providing excellent protection in a variety of collision types.
In addition, all 2006 Legacy and Outback models are equipped with standard front airbags, front seat side impact air bags and side curtain air bags that offer additional head protection for front and rear occupants. The Subaru Advanced Airbag System uses sensors to detect the presence and weight of a front passenger as well as the driver’s distance from the steering wheel.
All Subaru Legacy and Outback models also provide the peace of mind of a four-wheel disc Anti-lock Brake System with Electronic Brake-force Distribution.