In addition to crash tests performed by the government, the insurance industry has its own crash test safety rating system. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) tests are similar to those performed by the government, but have a few notable differences.
IIHS primarily conducts front and side crash tests, according to Consumer Reports. The industry’s front crash test involves slamming a vehicle at 40 miles per hour into a deformable barrier. Unlike in the government’s crash tests, however, the barrier in this test is small relative to the front of the vehicle. This is meant to simulate a driver’s-side to driver’s-side collision, which is often fatal. The durability of the vehicle’s underlying structure is crucial in protecting the driver, and such a crash puts this durability to the test, according to Consumer Reports.
IIHS also differs from the government in how it performs side collision tests. The insurance industry simulates crashing into an SUV or pickup, whereas the government simulates crashing into a sedan.
The best cars for bad credit are reliable, sturdy vehicles with good safety ratings from crash testing agencies.