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Subaru’s First EV Gets Top Marks In New IIHS Side Impact Crash Test

Is the 2023 Subaru Solterra a safe vehicle for EV shoppers? The IIHS announced the Solterra EV gets the highest new side crash test scores.

Subaru Corporation announced its first EV, the 2023 Subaru Solterra compact SUV picks up a top safety award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). The 2023 Subaru Solterra (built after Oct. 2022) gets its first Top Safety Pick+ award from the IIHS.

For 2023, the IIHS modified its Top Safety Pick and Top Safety Pick+ awards requirements. In addition, new requirements for side crash protection, pedestrian crash prevention systems, and headlights were instated.

2023 Subaru Solterra
photo credit: Competition Subaru

The IIHS says its crash tests are getting more challenging for new vehicles to attain the Top Safety Pick+ awards. As a result, only 28 new cars now qualify for the highest achievement, and only 20 vehicles qualify for the Top Safety Pick award. That's down from the 101 cars to get the top award last year.

The most significant change to the criteria for both awards is replacing the original IIHS side crash test with the updated evaluation launched in 2021. The updated test involves 82 percent more energy than the initial test. In addition, vehicles must earn an acceptable or good rating to qualify for Top Safety Pick, while a "Good" rating is required for the Top Safety Pick+ award.

2023 Subaru Solterra
photo credit: Competition Subaru

The Top Safety Pick+ criteria include another new evaluation, the nighttime vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention test. For the higher award, an advanced or superior rating is required in both the nighttime and daytime pedestrian tests. However, only a daytime rating of advanced or superior is required for Top Safety Pick.

What is the price of the 2023 Subaru Solterra?

The 2023 Solterra has three trim levels, Premium, Limited, and Touring. Pricing for the Solterra Premium trim level starts at $46,220. The Limited trim carries a starting manufacturer's suggested retail price of $49,720. The top-of-the-line Touring trim is priced at $53,220. Prices include destination and delivery fees ($1,225). Subaru says US retailers set the actual price and may charge more. Check out the Solterra model guide here.

Subaru announced the 2023 Subaru Ascent 3-Row SUV, and the 2023 Subaru Outback midsize SUV also earned top honors with IIHS Top Safety Pick+ awards. In addition, the 2023 Subaru Forester and 2023 Subaru Legacy are Top Safety Pick winners.

How safe is the Subaru 2023 Solterra? Subaru Corporation announced that the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) says in its latest list of the safest cars of 2023 that Subaru's first EV is among the best you can buy.

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2023 Subaru SolterraDenis 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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Photo credit: Competition Subaru