Lexus and a whole host of other luxury manufacturer’s have been given “poor” marks in the IIHS new “small overlap” crash test. The test is designed to simulate a car crashing into a tree or pole from a glancing angle at 40 mph.
Both the ES and the IS have been smacked down in the new test. They’re in good company though. Both Mercedes’ C-Class and Audi’s A4 have received poor ratings as well. BMW’s 3 series, the Lincoln MKZ, and The Volkswagen CC only manage to make it out with marginal ratings. In fact, the only two cars to earn a good distinction were Volvo’s S60, and Acura’s TL.
These type of crashes aren’t likely to end in a instant fatality, but instead injury to the legs and foot. In the IS, the A-pillar bent and the footwell collapsed as the tire was stuffed into the the passenger compartment. As a result, their dummy’s left foot was trapped by the intruding structure and it’s right foot was wedged beneath the brake pedal.
Lexus, a several time IIHS Top Safety Pick winner, are sure to remedy this in their upcoming vehicle designs. Most automakers react pretty quickly to evolving safety standards, and we don’t expect them to any different in this case.
Toyota said in a statement that there will not be a “one-size-fits-all” solution to achieving “greater crash protection in this area.”
In regards to potential costs and added vehicle weight, the company said it’s too early to speculate.
Toyota is reviewing the details of the test, which it received Aug. 1.
“With this new test, the Institute has raised the bar again and we will respond to this challenge as we design new vehicles,” the company said.