How One New Subaru Outback Upgrade Lowered Nighttime Crash Rates
A new study from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) singled out the 2022 Subaru Outback for offering the best headlights as standard across all trim levels. The recent IIHS report found that headlights that earn top ratings in an evaluation program are linked to lower nighttime crash rates.
Subaru also recently upgraded the 2022 Subaru Forester compact SUV, 2022 Ascent 3-Row family hauler, and 2022 Legacy sedan with steering responsive LED headlights (low and high beam) for improved visibility when driving at night.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says around half of all fatal crashes in the U.S. occur in the dark, and more than a quarter occur on unlit roads. A vehicle's headlights can make the difference between being safe and being in a potentially dangerous accident.
The IIHS announced models that have improved their safety rating earlier this year, and the 2021 Subaru Forester, Outback, Ascent, Legacy, and Crosstrek Hybrid are on its latest list. Subaru improved its safety scores in 2021 model year vehicles by eliminating inferior headlights and upgrading all trims with the best lights. These Subaru models get "good" ratings and earn IIHS' Top Safety Pick+ award.
The recent IIHS study found nighttime crash rates are about 20 percent lower for vehicles with headlights that earn a "good" rating in the IIHS evaluation vs. those with "poor" ratings. Crash rates for cars with "acceptable" headlight ratings are 15 percent lower than those earning poor ratings. Those with "marginal" ratings are 10 percent lower.
The study also found that good-rated lights reduced accident rates in which the driver was injured by 30 percent compared with poor-rated headlights. Good-rated headlights reduced tow-away crashes and pedestrian crashes by about 25 percent vs. poor-rated ones, according to IIHS.
Matthew Brumbelow, a senior research engineer at the IIHS, said, "Now, with our new study, we have confirmation that these improvements are saving lives."
The 2022 Subaru Outback was singled out in the IIHS report, and the 2022 Subaru Forester compact SUV, 2022 Ascent 3-Row family hauler, and 2022 Legacy sedan with steering responsive LED headlights will help lower nighttime crash rates.
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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press. Check out Subaru Report where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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