The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has just made the Mazda3 sedan and hatchback a Top Safety Pick for the 2011 model year. After some tweaks made by Mazda, the IIHS performed a roof strength test that completed the required tests to determine its Top Safety Pick status.
All Mazda3s made after December 2010 are considered Top Safety Picks for 2011. This is a good thing, considering how many of the Mazda3′s competitors are already on that list. Other Top Safety Picks in the small car category include the Chevrolet Cruze, non-Si Honda Civics, the Kia Forte sedan, Mitsubishi Lancer, Subaru Impreza, Toyota Corolla, and Volkswagen Golf four-door hatchbacks. A Top Safety Pick is a car that receives a good rating in the front, side, rear, and roof strength crash tests, and has electronic stability control.
“Nearly half of all Mazdas sold in the United States are Mazda3s, so we are justifiably proud of the 2011 Mazda3 earning the distinction of the IIHS ‘Top Safety Pick,’” said Jim O’Sullivan, President and CEO, Mazda North American Operations.
Over at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the 2011 Mazda3 got an overall four-star rating, though the side crash rating was just two stars due to an interior door panel striking the torso of the rear passenger dummy. The front side crash test rating was five stars.
What do you think: would a high or low safety rating convince you to buy one compact sedan or hatchback over another?
Source: IIHS, NHTSA