Honda Civic gets special designation from IIHS for impressive crash test performance

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which conducts crash testing separate from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration tests required for new vehicles,, recently announced that the revised 2013 Honda Civic is the first compact car to earn a Top Safety Pick “Plus” designation.

The designation was given to two Civic models-both the two-door and the four-door models-and three other larger vehicles. The other top scorers were the redesigned 2014 Mazda6 midsize mainstream sedan, the Lincoln MKZ midsize luxury sedan and the Volvo XC60 midsize luxury SUV.

The designation, TSP+, means that the cars were able to score a top “good” score on the new, tough, “small overlap frontal crash test” when hitting a barrier at 40 mph with just the outside 25 percent of the car’s front end, in addition to the regular tests administered. The test simulates car accidents resulting from lane departures, run off-road collisions, and other situations.

The results of the test were unique in that larger vehicles usually hold up better than smaller ones in crashes. The Civic is not a large vehicle, making it surprising that it performed so well.

Honda Civic’s impressive score is due to upgrades made on the models, which had just been redesigned in 2012.

Car manufacturers are keen to ensure positive performances on the IIHS tests, which are sometimes tougher than NHTSA tests.

For those looking to purchase a small, fuel-efficient vehicle, the Honda Civic is worth considering because of its safety scores. Not that we’re promoting any particular make or model here on this blog. Just acknowledging that safety is a concern of our readers.

Source: pnj.com, “Five cars pass new, tougher crash test,” Chris Woodyard & Jayne O’Donnell, March 8, 2013