The real trick to figuring out which cars are the most dangerous involves more than just looking at the death or injury rate. Although that statistic plays an important role, other factors, such as the age of the driver, may cause one model of car to be involved in more serious auto accidents than others, but it would not necessarily be the fault of the vehicle.
According to experts, the best way to determine if a car is unsafe is by examining the way it is configured. Experts evaluate how a car responds to side impact crashes, stability control testing, and rollover risk, and then assign it a particular level of safety based on the score.
These are five vehicles that scored among the lowest on these safety tests:
5. Saturn Ion
The Ion got better than average scores on accident avoidance and acceptable scores on the rollover index, however, where the car’s safety features fall short is in side impact collisions. Side impact crashes are oftentimes the most severe because the force of a crash can whip the heads of passengers and the driver into the window or door, causing serious injury. A car that lacks protection from these kinds of crashes, like the Ion, poses a danger to the vehicles occupants.
4. Chrysler PT Cruiser
Many people like the PT Cruiser for its retro design, affordability, and roomy interior, but a downside to this classically-designed vehicle is that its safety features are as outdated as the era the car appears to come from. Front impact rating is an unexceptional four stars, front seat side airbags are only available at additional cost, and stability control isn’t optional at all in the PT Cruiser.
3. Honda S2000
Dangerous is almost a given in sports cars. However, Honda’s S2000 pushes the limit. This small convertible has decent front impact, accident avoidance, and rollover ratings, but side impact airbags are not optional whatsoever, making it one of the worst cars to get in a collision with.
2. Ford Ranger/Mazda B-series
The Ford Ranger has a simple design that works for drivers who want an affordable, basic pickup truck. Unfortunately, the vehicle is too basic in its safety features as well. Side airbags or curtain bags aren’t available in the Ranger, even optionally, and it has one of the highest rollover ratios of any vehicle (20-30% in a single-vehicle crash).
1. Buick Rendezvous
A popular four-door SUV, the Rendezvous is sleek, comfortable, and luxurious, but what the car has in appeal, it lacks in safety. The Rendezvous only got three out of five stars from the NHTSA for frontal impact safety, and was replaced in 2008 by the Enclave, which is also a crossover SUV, but has the full safety features that the Rendezvous did not.
Other cars that were listed as being especially unsafe included: the Nissan Frontier, Ford Escape/Mercury, Toyota Yaris, Hyundai Accent, and Pontiac Vibe.
It’s never fun to think about car accidents, but that shouldn’t prevent you from considering the safety of your vehicle in case one does happen.
And if you are involved in an accident, contact a Colorado auto collision attorney to take advantage of your legal options.