Safety considerations to know before buying a new car.
If you’re shopping for a new car, then it’s likely that you’ll want to purchase a safe and reliable vehicle. Certain cars are safer than others and can do a better job at protecting your family and passengers in an incident. But before you start looking at vehicles that you like, be sure that you know some features that make a car safe.
The design of features such as car front, sides, roof strength, head restraints, and seats can reduce the risk of death or serious injury when a crash occurs. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) provides ratings for both crashworthiness and crash avoidance and mitigation features, and offers a tool that enables you to look up a car to see its safety rating.
Vehicle Structural Design
A good structural design has a strong occupant compartment, also known as the safety cage. The front and rear ends should be designed to buckle and bend in a crash to absorb the force of the crash. These crumple zones should keep damage away from the safety cage, protecting the passengers and driver.
Vehicle Size and Weight
In general, you’ll want to look for a heavier, larger vehicle. Smaller, lighter vehicles don’t have the strength to withstand a large impact, although some big cars are prone to rollovers and other issues. A mid-size sedan with a high safety rating might be your best choice.
There are some basic safety features that should be typical in all cars, including:
- Side airbags
- Head restraints that can be locked into place
Other features to look for in a car include:
- Anti-lock brakes
- Daytime running lights
- Backup camera
- Crash avoidance technologies
- Automatic crash notification system