Hyundai SUVs earn highest crash test ratings
In something of a safety tour de force, both Hyundai’s Veracruz and Santa Fe SUVs have earned five-star crash test ratings in both frontal and side-impact crash tests from the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
The Elantra also scored five stars for frontal crash performance while the Veracruz earned four stars for rollover performance.
NHTSA uses a consumer-friendly ratings system — ranging from one to five stars, with five being the highest.
Sixty-three 2007 models were assessed. Categories included sport-utility vehicles, heavy and light passenger cars, pickups, vans and compact and medium passenger cars.
The Veracruz received five-star frontal and side crash ratings in the sport-utility vehicle segment. The full-size sport-ute utilizes the latest in active and passive safety technologies including, standard Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) for impressive stopping distance for a vehicle of its size, anti-whiplash active head restraints and six airbags with side air curtains protecting all three rows during side impacts.
To absorb impacts to the passenger cabin, the Veracruz also has engineered crumple zones and reinforced architecture rails, side sill frame, floor cross-members and centre pillars.
The Santa Fe, with five-star frontal and side crash ratings, ranks above Toyota’s RAV4 and FJ Cruiser models. The Hyundai comes with the latest standard safety equipment including anti-whiplash active head restraints and six airbags such as side air curtains, which help protect occupants in all three rows during side impacts.
The Santa Fe also earned a higher rollover rating than the Honda Element with four stars for both the two- and four-wheel drive models.
“With these results, Hyundai is pleased to offer every crossover in its lineup, including the Tucson, with the very highest government crash-test ratings,” said John Vernile, vice-president of sales and marketing, Hyundai Auto Canada Corp.
Meanwhile, Hyundai’s new Elantra received five-star frontal and four-star side crash ratings in the compact passenger car segment, beating out the Toyota Prius model.