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Mazda CX-5 vs Toyota RAV4 vs Honda CR-V – New tougher side crash test

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Mazda CX-5 vs Toyota RAV4 vs Honda CR-V – New tougher side crash test. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is introducing a new, tougher side crash test to address higher-speed crashes that continue to cause fatalities. In the first tests of 2020-21 vehicles, only one out of 20 small SUVs, the 2021 Mazda CX-5, earns a good rating.

“We developed this new test because we suspected there was room for more progress, and these results confirm that,” IIHS President David Harkey says. “The good rating for the CX-5 shows that robust protection in a more severe side crash is achievable.”

Nine vehicles earn acceptable ratings: the Audi Q3, Buick Encore, Chevrolet Trax, Honda CR-V, Nissan Rogue, Subaru Forester, Toyota RAV4, Toyota Venza and Volvo XC40.

Eight others — the Chevrolet Equinox, Ford Escape, GMC Terrain, Hyundai Tucson, Jeep Compass, Jeep Renegade, Kia Sportage and Lincoln Corsair — earn marginal ratings. Two more, the Honda HR-V and Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross, receive poor ratings.

All but one of the tested vehicles was a 2021 model. Mitsubishi skipped the 2021 model year for the Eclipse Cross, so the 2020 model was tested. With the exception of the Compass and the Tucson, the ratings carry over to 2022 models.

To address those crashes, the updated side test uses a heavier barrier traveling at a higher speed to simulate the striking vehicle. The new barrier weighs 4,180 pounds — close to the weight of today’s midsize SUVs — and strikes the test vehicle at 37 mph, compared with a 3,300-pound barrier traveling at 31 mph in the original evaluation. Together, those two changes mean it involves 82 percent more energy.

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