Think Twice Before Buying a Minicar

You might want to think twice before investing in a small car to save on fuel bills, unless you are willing to risk your safety, studies show.

Cars Not Making the Grade

The Institute for Highway Safety examined 11 new minicars. Out of these 11, ten failed the trade group’s challenging new Overlap Front Test. This simulates the type of crash that happens in the real world of driving. The only small car that that just barely passed was the Chevrolet Spark. A spokesperson for IIHS believes that…

“These tiny vehicles are the worst performing group of any evaluated so far.”

This means that the Chevy Spark is the only minicar that has earned the 2014 Top Safety Pick award. This specific new crash test demonstrates what would happen if the front corner of your vehicle collided with another car or object. Vehicles that are small and lightweight are definitely at a safety disadvantage. The minicar group is just not performing as well as the other vehicle categories in the small overlap crash test.

Bigger Isn’t Always Better

However, even the category of cars one size up from these only passed 5 out of 17 models successfully. A number of larger vehicles have had difficulty passing the crash test launched in 2012. The midsize Toyota Camry has had the Top Safety Pick and its ratings revoked in recent months. Manufacturers are racing to meet the standards of additional bracing to the front of these vehicles.

Not quite so easy, though, to add additional weight to the smallest of cars…This makes them less cost effective and can throw performance off.

Even Chevy Spark Deemed Unsafe

Even with the Chevy Spark’s “acceptable” rating, the IIHS noted it still does not protect as well as a larger and heavier vehicles with a comparable rating. None of these minicars offer front crash prevention to warn the driver of a potential crash.

Life is not worth saving on fuel, though times are tough economically for many. A few more years of development are likely needed before a driver can feel safe in a minicar. With distracted driving such a prevalent problem, this combination is a death risk.

Before you decide to buy a small, fuel saving car, do your research on the safety of it. The research may be well worth your time and your life.


Author: Kay Van Wey

Kay Van Wey is an award-winning Board Certified Texas Personal Injury Lawyer. Learn more at

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