IIHS releases top safety picks for 2019

The 2019 Chrysler Pacifica being built at FCA Windsor Assembly on October 5, 2018 in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by JEFF KOWALSKY / AFP/ Getty Images)

NEW YORK —  The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash tested cars of all shapes and sizes to determine the top safety picks.

Front crash prevention systems and headlight performance were also put to the test.

Approximately 57 2019 models received the top two awards. That’s five fewer than last year, but the IIHS also raised the bar. Vehicles had to show advanced front crash prevention to earn a “Top Safety Pick” and must meet higher standards in several categories to be a “Top Safety Pick Plus.”

Only one vehicle from a U.S. automaker – the Chrysler Pacifica – made the grade.

“We are disappointed we don’t have more U.S. models in the “Top Safety Picks” this year,” said IIHS President David Harkey. “They missed, like a number of auto makers, on the headlight ratings and so they had a few near misses to achieving that “Good” or “Acceptable” rating on our headlight tests.”

Harkey said improvements are needed when it comes to headlights but he’s seen advancements in crash protection and prevention.

“We are very encouraged that automakers are stepping up to the plate, making changes where it counts and providing consumers with a good variety of vehicles to choose from.”

The group said that’s making cars on the road today safer than ever.

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