Six vehicles were added to the list of those earning the top rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Since they started testing for the small overlap front collisions, many have not performed well. The vehicles that earned the top safety pick plus score all earned good scores on these new tests, including the Honda Civic coupe and sedan, Lincoln MKZ, Mazda 6, Subaru Forester and Volvo XC90, all from year 2013. Cars that receive the highest scores often have lower auto insurance rates, according to news reports.
A mother in British Columbia is warning others about the hazards of seat warmers in vehicles. She was driving her Volkswagen Jetta when the seat warmer burned her seat. She felt her jeans burning and smelled smoke. The seat warmer defect is a known problem for many cars, especially those made by Volkswagen. When she bought the car, she was informed it was recalled but fixed. 119 complaints have been logged involving the seat warmers overheating since 1990, according to news reports.
A new project was recently announced by the Department of Transportation in Abu Dhabi, the “Crash Analysis and Reporting System” which improves road safety and lowers the risk of serious car collisions. The initiative is part of an effort to reduce the number of serious car wrecks in Abu Dhabi. The British Transport Research Laboratory developed the project, which adapts international standards in road safety to determine how to make roads safer. They will also use social data to determine traffic patterns and locations of collisions, according to news reports.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety announced they are giving a top safety award to three new vehicles for their performance in a newly introduced test. The Volvo XC60, Lincoln MKZ and Mazda 6 all earned the award after getting a “good” rating for small overlap protection. This test is designed to mimic what would happen when the front corner of a car crashes into another car or object. They were given the Top Safety Pick+ award, according to news reports.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is deciding if they should expand a recall due to unsafe brake lights. Many customers have complained regarding Pontiac G6′s and 8,000 vehicles have been recalled so far. There are two other vehicle models in question, as well, the Chevrolet Malibu and Saturn Aura. Corrosion in a wiring connector may be the cause of the problem, and automakers are resolving the problem by using lubricant, according to news reports.
The Mazda6 was recently given the “Top Safety Pick+” designation, the first vehicle from the automaker to make this designation. The vehicle earned a good rating on several tests including frontal moderate overlap, side, roof, and head restraints, along with an acceptable rating on the small overlap test. To receive the plus designation, a vehicle has to earn these ratings. The small overlap test was introduced last year to show passengers are protected in a frontal wreck, because this type of wreck happens when the front corner of a vehicle collides with another vehicle or object, according to news reports.
The list of top auto brands was recently announced by Consumer Reports. All of those vehicles that made the list were from outside the United States. Three Honda’s, an Accord, Odyssey and CRV made the list of the year’s best vehicle models. Honda didn’t make the list last year. A representative for Consumer Reports said Honda seems to have figured out their act. They still recommend car owners do their research when it comes to purchasing a new car. They chose from over 280 vehicles that were recently tested to build the list. Other top picks include the Toyota Prius, Subaru Impreza, Audi A6, and Toyota Highlander, according to news reports.
Nissan’s new Note is promised to have technology that will keep drivers more safe and offer them more security. Technology normally found on premium luxury cars, the Safety Shield, will be found on this smaller vehicle for the first time. Other features included on the Note are Blind Spot Warning, Lane Departure Warning, and Moving Object Detection. Other technologies such as the Around View Mirror helps protect pedestrians. The vehicle technology hopes to reduce pedestrian wrecks that cause 34,000 deaths each year in the UK, according to news reports.
A proposal for a class-action lawsuit was filed today by a consumer rights group against the Ford Motor Company. The lawsuit alleges their F150 trucks were dangerous because they had a safety defect. When a driver tried accelerating, it would begin shaking then stall. The complaint has quotes from over 20 vehicle owners concerning the problem, which lawyers believe is a result of the Charge Air Cooler system. The complaint will be filed in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. As a driver accelerates, attorneys believe this moves moisture into the system, according to news reports.
The Nissan Leaf electric car can drive itself through a route it was trained to drive. The technology was developed at Oxford University and includes collision avoidance and reduces cost by not relying on satellite navigation. It was tested at a park near Oxford. The vehicle includes small camera and lasers that are linked to a computer while the user interface and control is managed from an iPad. A human driver can control the vehicle simply by tapping on the brakes. Researchers will begin to understand how to use the system with more complicated traffic flow situations, according to news reports.