Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Launches New Roof Strength Rating
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is launching a new rating system ahead of the proposed government mandated increases.
Currently the government mandates a vehicle only be able to withstand a crushing force on the roof equal to 1.5 times the weight, strength-to-weight ratio, of the vehicle. A proposal to increase the minimum rating to 2.5 times the weight of the vehicle is still pending.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is being proactive in its ratings and using a new rating system. The new system assigns vehicle’s a rating of good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.
Obtaining a good rating requires the vehicle’s roof to withstand a crushing force of 4 times the vehicles weight before deforming 5-inches. An acceptable rating requires vehicle’s to have a strength-to-weight ratio of 3.25, 2.5 for marginal, and anything under 2.5 is poor.
Initially the Institute tested twelve small SUVs and CUVs, four of which obtained ratings of good and only one of which was rated as poor. To receive an IIHS Top Safety Pick award for 2010 vehicles must get a rating of good. This will eliminate quite a few cars as only three of the twelve vehicles tested would receive an IIHS Top Safety Pick for 2010. Eight of the twelve received IIHS Top Safety Pick awards in 2009.