The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety released its initial list of Top Safety Pick+ and Top Safety Pick winners for the 2023 model year. This time, there are 48 awarded vehicles, which is significantly less than the 101 for 2022 models. This difference is largely due to the IIHS requiring better side-impact protection, improved crash-prevention tech, and better illuminating headlights to be eligible for the honors.
Of the 48 winners, 28 received the Top Safety Pick+ award and 20 got the Top Safety Pick honor. In contrast, 65 models scored the TSP+ last year and 36 won the TSP accolade last year.
"The number of winners is smaller this year because we’re challenging automakers to build on the safety gains they’ve already achieved," said IIHS President David Harkey. "These models are true standouts in both crashworthiness and crash prevention."
The Toyota Motor Corp's combination of the Toyota and Lexus brands scored the most awards for 2023. It had nine models with a Top Safety Pick+ and six earning a Top Safety Pick. In 2022, Hyundai led the pack with 11 TSP+ honors and 10 TSP trophies
For the 2024 model year, the IIHS will no longer conduct the roof strength, head restraint, and vehicle-to-vehicle front-crash prevention system tests. The current state of the industry means that nearly every model receives Good scores in these evaluations. The organization is working on more challenging examinations to assess these features in the future.
Eliminating some tests won't make getting an IIHS award any easier for 2024 vehicles. A Good, rather than Good or Acceptable, score on the side-impact test will be necessary to earn either honor. For the updated moderate-overlap front test, a Good or Acceptable rating will be a requirement of the Top Safety Pick+ winner. The revised evaluation will mean there will now be a crash dummy in the second row, and the agency will check it for injuries with sensors.