Acura MDX Named 'Best Pick' In Insurance Institute For Highway Safety (IIHS) Frontal Offset Crash Tests

The Acura MDX luxury SUV earned the "best pick" designation in Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) frontal offset crash tests Acura announced today. The tests measure vehicles' crashworthiness in a 40 mph offset crash test into a deformable barrier. Vehicles are rated good, acceptable, marginal, or poor while vehicles that perform very well are designated "best picks." The IIHS is an insurance industry group that lobbies the auto industry on safety issues.

The MDX was judged the best performer in a group of eight 2001-02 midsize SUVs that also included the Toyota Highlander, the Chevrolet TrailBlazer/Oldsmobile Bravada/GMC Envoy, the Mitsubishi Montero Sport, the Pontiac Aztek, the Isuzu Axiom, the Buick Rendezvous and the Suzuki Grand Vitara XL-7.

"We are extremely pleased with the performance of the MDX in this IIHS frontal offset test," said Dick Colliver, executive vice president, sales. "This "best pick" designation and our category-leading rating in IIHS 5 mph bumper tests in July continue to establish the MDX as the benchmark in its class."

IIHS frontal offset tests rate each vehicle on three aspects of crashworthiness:

  • How well the vehicle's front end manages crash energy to limit occupant compartment intrusion.
  • Injury risk measured on an average-size male Hybrid III dummy in the driver seat.
  • How well the belt and airbag perform and interact with the steering column and other vehicle parts to control dummy kinematics (movement).

The MDX received "good" ratings in all three categories as well as an overall evaluation of "good," the highest rating given. In the 40 mph offset test, the 2001 MDX's occupant compartment "held its shape extremely well, and the dummy went square into the airbag," said IIHS president Brian O'Neill. "This is an example of very good performance. The dummy injury measures were all low, indicating that a driver in a similar, real-world crash would be able to walk away with nothing worse than minor injuries."

The MDX has posted extremely strong sales since its inception last year, earning Motor Trend magazine's 2001 Sport/Utility of the Year award and the 2001 North American Truck of the Year. In July of 2001, its performance in 5 mph bumper tests was rated the best of any midsize SUV tested by the IIHS.

Acura offers a full line of premium performance vehicles through a nationwide network of nearly 260 dealers. The Acura line-up features six distinctive models including the exotic NSX supercar, the 3.5 RL flagship luxury sedan, the best-selling 3.2 TL luxury performance sedan, the 3.2 CL luxury performance coupe, the new race-bred RSX sports coupe, and the revolutionary MDX luxury sport utility vehicle. For more consumer information about Acura vehicles, please visit For media inquiries, please go to

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