The Acura MDX luxury SUV earned the "best pick" designation in Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) frontal offset crash tests, Acura announced today. The tests measure vehicles' crashworthiness in a 40 mph offset crash test into a deformable barrier. Vehicles are rated good, acceptable, marginal, or poor, while vehicles that perform very well are designated "best picks." The IIHS is an insurance industry group that lobbies the auto industry on safety issues.
According to Acura, the MDX was judged the best performer in a group of eight 2001-02 midsize SUV's that also included the Toyota Highlander, the Chevrolet Trailblazer/Oldsmobile Bravada/GMC Envoy, the Mitsubishi Montero Sport, the Pontiac Aztek, the Isuzu Axiom, the Buick Rendezvous and the Suzuki Grand Vitara XL-7.
"We are extremely pleased with the performance of the MDX in this IIHS frontal offset test," said Dick Colliver, executive vice president, sales. "This 'best pick' designation and our category-leading rating in IIHS 5mph bumper tests in July continue to establish the MDX as the benchmark in its class."
IIHS frontal offset tests rate each vehicle on three aspects of crashworthiness:How well the vehicle's front end manages crash energy to limit occupant compartment intrusion.
Injury risk measured on an average-size male Hybrid III dummy in the driver seat.
How well the belt and airbag perform and interact with the steering column and other vehicle parts to control dummy movement.
By IIHS standards, the MDX received "good" ratings in all three categories, as well as an overall evaluation of "good," the highest rating given. In the 40 mph offset test, the 2001 MDX's occupant compartment "held its shape extremely well, and the dummy went square into the airbag," said IIHS president Brian O'Neill. "This is an example of very good performance. The dummy injury measures were all low, indicating that a driver in a similar, real-world crash would be able to walk away with nothing worse than minor injuries."
The MDX was named Motor Trend magazine's 2001 Sport/Utility of the Year and was the 2001 North American Truck of the year. In July of 2001, its performance in 5mph bumper tests was rated the best of any midsize SUV tested by the IIHS.