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Volvo Crowned Europe’s Safest Brand with 3 Top Safety Pick+ Cars

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Volvo led all European carmakers with four 2017 Top Safety Pick+ awards

The new S90 sedan was one of many Volvos to earn a Top Safety Pick award

The IIHS Top Safety Pick Award began in 2006 as a way to aid consumers in finding the automobiles with the finest overall safety performance. In the years since, the IIHS has also introduced the Top Safety Pick+ Award and the criteria for earning each prestigious honor has grown even more difficult.

For 2017, the IIHS added new headlight evaluations on top of what is already required for a vehicle to earn a Top Safety Pick+ title. This was done after laboratory tests revealed that government standards allowed for a large discrepancy in the amount of illumination supplied by various headlights during nighttime driving situations, which has been determined to be crucial for safe driving on the highway, as approximately half of all auto-related fatalities occur at night or in low visibility situations.

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In response, the IIHS now requires a vehicle to earn a Good or Acceptable rating in its new headlight evaluations to receive Top Safety Pick+ honors, and that’s on top of its other requirements, which include a Good rating in its roof strength, head restraints, side, small overlap front, and moderate overlap front tests. Furthermore, a vehicle has to earn an Advanced or Superior rating for its front crash prevention system. The latter evaluation focuses on the vehicle’s automatic braking technology. This is because the IIHS has determined that helping to prevent a crash in the first place is perhaps even more important than helping people walk away from a crash.

With all of these tests to pass in order to become a Top Safety Pick+, it might not shock too many people that an auto brand focused on safety—Volvo—earned more 2017 Top Safety Pick+ awards than any other European automaker. The vehicles that accomplished this were the Volvo S60, V60, and XC60 when equipped with active dual xenon headlamps. In addition, the new S90 sedan and XC90 SUV also were given Top Safety Pick ratings, which don’t factor in the new headlight evaluation.

“Volvo’s commitment to safety is crystallized in our Vision 2020, which states that no one should be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo car by 2020.” said President and CEO of Volvo Car USA Lex Kerssemakers. “Our new cars prove that luxury, style and performance can perfectly compliment world-leading safety.”

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Video: Learn More About the IIHS’s New Headlight Criteria