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Which new car models offer the safest headlights?

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According to research by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), around half of fatal crashes in the United States occur in the dark, and over a quarter happen on unlit roads. In an effort to prevent, nighttime crashes, the IIHS has included headlight ratings for the first time ever in their evaluation of Top Safety Picks.

IIHS tests measure the headlights' performance as the vehicle travels both in a straight line and around curves. They used sensors to measure how far the light extended from the beams at a predetermined intensity. The beams were then graded based on their performance in the tests. Extra credit was given for cars equipped with high beam assist which automatically switches to high beams when they provide greater visibility (but back to low when another vehicle approaches. 

 

 

 

Which vehicles offer the safest headlights?

As of this writing, the IIHS has performed headlight tests on mid-sized sedans, small SUVs, and pick-up trucks. While only three vehicles, the Subaru Legacy, Toyota Prius v and the Honda Ridgeline, have received the highest rating of "Good" a number have received lower designations or "Acceptable" or "Marginal." We've listed these below by manufacturer.

 

Acura

Acura TLX - Marginal in all trims, standard LED projector headlights

Audi

Audi A3 - Acceptable when equipped with Premium or Premium Plus trim with HID projector headlights

Audi A4 - Marginal when equipped with HID projector headlights

BMW 

BMW 2 series - Marginal in 228 trim equipped with Lighting and Driver Assistance packages with HID projector headlights and high-beam assist

BMW 3 series - Marginal in 320, 328, 330, and 340 trims equipped with Lighting package with LED reflector headlights and high-beam assist

BMW X1 - Marginal in xDrive28i trim with Premium and Driver Assistance Plus packages with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist or in xDrive28i trim equipped with Premium package and LED projector lights

Chrysler

Chrysler 200 - Marginal in C and C Platinum trims with SafetyTec package with HID projector headlights and high-beam assist

Ford

Ford Escape - Acceptable in Titanium trim with Titanium Technology package with HID projector headlights and high-beam assist; Marginal in SE Trim with SE Technology package, and Titanium trim, both with halogen projector headlights

Ford Fusion - Marginal in SE and Titanium trims equipped with Driver Assist package with halogen projector headlights and high-beam assist

GMC

GMC Sierra 1500 - Acceptable in SLT trim with Premium Plus package, Denali trim with Enhanced Driver Alert or Intellibeam Headlights packages with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist; Marginal in Denali trim with LED projector headlights

Honda 

Honda Accord 4-door - Acceptable in LX, Sport, EX, and EX-L trims with halogen projector headlights; Marginal in Touring trim in LED projector headlights

Honda CR-V - Acceptable in Touring trim with halogen projector headlights; Marginal in LX, SE, EX, and EX-L trims with halogen reflector headlights

Honda Ridgeline - Good in RTL-E and Black Edition trims with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist

Hyundai

Hyundai Tucson - Acceptable in Limited trim with LED projector headlights

Infiniti

Infiniti Q50 - Acceptable when equipped with Premium or S trims and Technology package with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist; Marginal with Base, Premium or S trim

Lexus 

Lexus ES - Acceptable when equipped with Lexus Safety System + package with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist; Marginal with LED projector headlights without high-beam assist; Marginal with Bi-LED headlamps and Lexus Safety System + with high -beam assist

Lexus IS - Acceptable when equipped with Pre-collision system package with HID projector headlights and high-beam assist; Marginal with Premium, Luxury or, F-Sport packages with LED projector headlights

Lincoln

Lincoln MKZ - Marginal in all trims equipped with Technology package with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist

Mazda

Mazda CX-3 - Acceptable in Grand Touring trim equipped with i-ACTIVESENSE package with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist, or in Grand Touring trim with LED projector headlights

Mazda CX-5 - Acceptable in Grand Touring trim equipped with Grand Touring Technology and i-ACTIVESENSE packages with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist, or in Touring trim equipped with Touring Technology package, or Grand Touring trim equipped with Grand Touring Technology package with LED projector headlights; Marginal with standard halogen projector headlights in all other trims

Mazda 6 - Acceptable in Grand Touring trim with GT Technology package with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist, or in Grand Touring trim with Touring Technology package and LED projector headlights; Marginal in Sport and Touring trims with halogen projector headlights

Mitsubishi

Mitsubishi Outlander - Marginal in GT trim with LED projector headlights

Nissan

Nissan Altima - Acceptable in 2.5 SR trim with LED Appearance package, 2.5 SL trim with Technology package, 3.5 SR and 3.5 SL trims with LED projector headlights

Nissan Maxima - Acceptable in Platinum and SR trims with LED projector headlights

Nissan Rogue - Acceptable in SL trim with Premium package with LED projector headlights

Nissan Titan - Marginal in S and SV trim with halogen reflector headlights, or Pro 4X, SL, or Platinum trims with LED projector headlights

RAM

Ram 1500 - Marginal in Tradesman, Express, Lone Star, Big Horn, Tradesman HFE, Outdoorsman, and SLT trims with halogen reflector headlights

Subaru

Subaru Legacy - Good in 3.6R Limited trim and HID projector headlights; Marginal in 2.5i Premium or Limited trims with halogen projector headlights

Subaru Outback - Acceptable in 3.6R Limited trim and HID projector headlights

Toyota

Toyota Camry - Acceptable in XLE, XSE and Hybrid XLE trims equipped with Technology package with halogen projector headlights and high-beam assist

Toyota Prius v - Good when equipped with Advanced Technology package with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist; Acceptable in Five trim with LED projector headlights

Toyota RAV4 - Acceptable in SE trim with Advanced Technology package, Limited and Limited hybrid trims with LED projector headlights and high-beam assist; Marginal in all other trims

Volkswagen

Volkswagen CC - Acceptable in 2.0 Sport, 2.0 R-Line, and 3.6L V4 4Motion Executive trims with HID projector headlights

Volkswagen Jetta - Acceptable in Hybrid SEL Premium, GLI SEL, SEL with Lighting package, SEL Premium with Lighting package, and Sport with Lighting package with HID projector headlights; Marginal in S, SE, SEL, SEL Premium, Sport and GLI trims with halogen reflector headlights

Volkswagen Tiguan - Acceptable in SE and SEL trims with HID projector headlights

Volvo

Volvo S60 - Acceptable in Platinum trim with HID projector headlights and high-beam assist

 

No matter what safety features you want in your new vehicle, Cartelligent can help you get a great deal on exactly what you want. Call our team of car-buying experts at 888-427-4270 or get started today.