List of Top Safety Pick 2008 Winners

11/17/2008 | Auto, Semi & Motorcycle Wrecks

If you are ever involved in a car wreck or semi-truck accident you probably think you want to be in the biggest, heaviest automobile or suv; however, you may be surprised to know that one of the vehicles everyone thinks is safe, isn't. As a lawyer that represents people who were hurt or killed in car or truck wrecks, there aren't many things on which I can agree with the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, but even I pay attention when they do their annual surveys on the safest vehicles.

According to the report released by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the safest mid-size SUV was the 2009 Nissan Murano.  What might surprise most is that the Hummer H3 had one of the poorest showings.  The General Motors' H3 was the only vehicle in the group that did not receive the top rating for frontal crash protection and, even more disturbing, it received the lowest rating, "poor", in the rear crash test.  Of important note, the H3  and the Chrysler Jeep Liberty and Dodge Nitro are all three built on the same platform. 

So, just because its big doesn't mean its safe.  Do your research by reading the full 5-page report here and drive safely. 

Here are the Institutes "safest" vehicles:

Top Safety Pick 2008 award winners

Large cars

Audi A6

Cadillac CTS

Ford Taurus with optional electronic stability control

Mercury Sable with optional electronic stability control

Volvo S80

Midsize cars

Audi A3

Audi A4

Honda Accord 4-door models

Saab 9-3

Subaru Legacy with optional electronic stability control

Midsize convertibles

Saab 9-3

Volvo C70

Small car

Subaru Impreza with optional electronic stability control

Minivans

Honda Odyssey

Hyundai Entourage

Kia Sedona

Midsize SUVs

Acura MDX

Acura RDX

BMW X3

BMW X5

Ford Edge

Ford Taurus X

Honda Pilot

Hyundai Santa Fe

Hyundai Veracruz built after August 2007

Infiniti EX35

Lincoln MKX

Mercedes M class

Nissan Murano

Saturn VUE built after December 2007

Subaru Tribeca

Toyota Highlander

Volvo XC90

Small SUVs

Honda CR-V

Honda Element

Subaru Forester with optional electronic stability control

Large pickup

Toyota Tundra

Hans Poppe