ARLINGTON, Va. - The redesigned Volvo XC90 qualifies for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's highest award, TOP SAFETY PICK+, thanks to stellar ratings for crash protection and for its standard front crash prevention system.
The previous generation of the midsize luxury SUV also had good ratings across the board for crashworthiness but had no available front crash prevention system.
The 2016 XC90 comes with an upgraded version of Volvo's City Safety feature. A previous version of City Safety - standard on earlier Volvos, though not the XC90 - was an automatic braking system that functioned only at low speeds.
The new version also functions at higher speeds. In IIHS track tests at 12 mph and 25 mph, the XC90 avoided collisions. The system also includes a forward collision warning component that meets criteria set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The vehicle earns the maximum 6 points from IIHS for a front crash prevention rating of superior.
The SUV earns good ratings in all five of the Institute's crashworthiness tests - small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraints.
In the small overlap test, the most challenging of the IIHS evaluations, the driver space held up very well, with intrusion of less than 2 inches at all measured points in the driver's seating space. The dummy's movement was well-controlled, and the front and side curtain airbags worked well together to protect the head. Measures taken from the dummy showed a low risk of any significant injuries in a crash of this severity.
To qualify for TOP SAFETY PICK, vehicles must earn good ratings in the moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraint tests, plus a good or acceptable rating in the small overlap test. For TOP SAFETY PICK+, vehicles also need an available front crash system with an advanced or superior rating.