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Ford Vehicles Get Top Ratings from Insurance Group

December 19, 2003

Ford Motor Co.'s new F-150 pickup and Freestar minivan received top ratings in an insurance industry group's crash tests designed to simulate high-speed collisions, according to a Reuters report.The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) said on Dec. 19 that both vehicles earned "good" ratings in 40 mph frontal crashes into barriers designed to strike only the driver's side of the vehicle, according to Reuters.The institute says a good rating means that, in a real crash of similar severity, a belted driver would be likely to walk away with minor injuries. The safety also gave both vehicles "Best Pick" designations among their competitors. The previous version of the F-150 had been rated "poor" by the institute, while the Ford Windstar minivan had been rated "acceptable." In an unusual step, Ford requested the tests by the institute and reimbursed the group for the cost of the vehicles, Reuters reported.The IIHS tests have become a closely watched measure of crashworthiness, and several automakers tout good results in advertising, especially for minivans and other family vehicles, according to Reuters.
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