Subaru Dealerships Celebrate IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK+ Awards

Arizona Subaru dealers and Subaru dealers across the nation have earned the right to boast as it receives the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) TOP SAFETY PICK+ award for seven of its 2019 models, the eighth model receiving the 2nd tier, TOP SAFETY AWARD.  As 2019 gets underway, Subaru is the leading vehicle manufacturer receiving the most TOP SAFETY PICK+ awards.

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The TOP SAFETY PICK+ (TSP+) is the highest ranked safety award by IIHS.

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The following Subaru models, in their respective categories, received the highest rating award:

Small Cars:

  • Subaru Crosstrek
  • Subaru Impreza sedan
  • Subaru Impreza wagon
  • Subaru WRX

Midsize Cars:

  • Subaru Legacy
  • Subaru Outback

Midsize SUV:

  • Subaru Ascent

It deserves mention that the Ascent is making its debut for the model year 2019 and complies fully with all the latest safety testing. The Impreza sedan and wagon have received the TSP+ award three years in a row, and the Crosstrek, WRX, Legacy and Outback have been awarded the TSP+ for two consecutive years.

Presenter and publisher for, Ramon Mica, exclaims Subaru’s “ad campaign, all about safety… it’s basically about love and you know the safety reports do actually substantiate their advertising. Good for Subaru.”

Subaru takes their customers’ safety extremely seriously, much like the IIHS, who has upped the ante on consumers’ vehicle safety for the 2019 crash testing standards. 

The IIHS performed extensive crash tests on these vehicles. Every year the IIHS increases their safety standards through tougher testing and qualifications.

The 2019 Crash Tests included:

  • Small Overlap Front Driver and (Passenger side test requirements new 2019) Crash Testing
  • Moderate Overlap Front Crash Testing
  • Side Impact Crash Testing
  • Roof Strength Crash Testing – determines the force it takes to squish the roof of the car
  • Head Restraints and Seat Crash Testing
  • Frontal Crash Prevention (Advanced or Superior) – driver assisted technologies: adaptive cruise control, pedestrian detection, and brake assist
  • Headlight Performance – how they move and turn, and illuminate without blinding the oncoming traffic while giving adequate sight distance in the dark (also new for 2019)

A total of 57 vehicles qualified for either the TPS+ or the TOP SAFTEY PICK (TSP)award. There were 30 vehicles that ranked the highest for passenger-side protection in a small overlap front crash and earned good on the headlight category, who were deemed first-tier ‘plus" award winners. Seven of the 30 vehicles in the TSP+ category were Subaru models. The 2019 Subaru Forester just missed the mark and accepted a TSP award due to the headlights rating as “Acceptable,” requiring a “Good” rating to get bumped to the + award. The Forester did surpass its previous year’s ratings, showing an impressive improvement in this year’s crash tests.


The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is committed to reducing the damages and loss that result from accidents on the roadways nationwide, including injuries, property damage and deaths. The IIHS is an independent, nonprofit scientific and educational organization. In 2006 it launched the TSP accolade for the purpose of creating crash test reports for consumers to easily consider the safest vehicles on the market without having to review all the reports themselves; thus the highest rated vehicles are easily deciphered for the consumer.

With increased standards and requirements on safety features, the IIHS conducted a survey in 2015 which presented a noticeable decrease in the amount of road fatalities and a decrease in the risk of injuries with improved safety features. According to Forbes, the survey reported that “there were 7,700 fewer driver deaths in 2012 than there would have been had vehicles remained the same since 1985.”

Seeing the benefits of higher standards on safety features, IIHS continues to task vehicle manufactures to anticipate and protect drivers and passengers from any situation that could cause harm to the occupants.

For the 2019 crash test series, the IIHS created stricter criteria to qualify for the first tier, TSP+ award, and the second tier, TSP award. The TSP+ award was introduced in the 2013 model year with increasingly tougher safety standards for vehicle manufacturers to try to achieve. The intensification of requisites is to encourage manufacturers to incorporate advanced safety features on more of their model vehicles.

For the 2019 crash testing IIHS-HLDI President David Harkey explains, "We challenged manufacturers to provide the best possible protection in a range of crash scenarios and equip vehicles with an automatic emergency braking system to avoid crashes, as well as offer headlights that give drivers confidence when traveling at night.”

This year focus shifted to the passenger side of the vehicle after it became clear that manufacturers gave more attention to the driver side. IIHS decided to add in regulations that paid equal attention to the protection on both frontal sides. With the focus on the front of the car, it also became evident that improvements were needed in the headlights to provide adequate lighting for the driver without emitting a glare for those driving in the opposite direction.

In this year’s testing, “all 57 vehicles earned good ratings in the institute's five other crash worthiness evaluations and had an available automatic emergency braking system that rated advanced or superior for front crash prevention,” per the IIHS.

What makes Subaru cars for sale so superior in safety?

The Subaru’s EyeSight Driver Assist Technology is what garnered the Superior rating for its models in the front crash prevention test. As reported at, according to an independent study conducted by the Institute for Traffic Accident Research and Data Analysis (ITARDA), the EyeSight Driver Assist Technology has proven to prevent collisions and reduce impact.

The IIHS reports that there has been an 85% decrease in rear-end collisions with injuries with the Subaru models equipped with the EyeSight technology.  

Christian Robinson, Director of Internet Sales & Marketing at Findlay Subaru Prescott further details Subaru safety accessories, “The suite of safety features provide a second set of eyes to help keep people safe. It’s there for the “what-if” moments.  If there is an instant your eyes are off the road for any reason the car is prepared for the unpredictable. It expects the unexpected to keep you safe at all times.”

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Subaru EyeSight Driver Assist Technology

Subaru engineering is always thinking of new and innovative ways to keep their vehicles leading in safety. The goal of Subaru safety is to anticipate danger before it causes a collision, making hazards as avoidable and preventable as possible.

How does it work?

Cameras are mounted on the top of the windshield to capture live events. If it senses a potential hazard, it employs one of the many features to prevent or lessen impact. 

The EyeSight Driver Assist Technology is a Subaru accessory that now comes standard in all 2019 Subaru models. It is the driving force behind an array of lifesaving safety features:

250 × 380Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) – this feature allows the driver to set the distance he or she wants to keep between the next vehicle ahead. ACC keeps the driver in line with the flow of traffic and keeps the set distance at all time, slowing down and accelerating accordingly. This also eliminates the need for the driver to have to constantly fiddle with setting cruise control in varying traffic situations. The Subaru adjusts automatically. 

Lane Keep Assist – provides two audio alerts, a lane departure warning and a lane sway warning. This feature monitors the lane markings the car is driving in. If it detects the driver drifting over the line it will signal an alert. If the driver does not correct the path of the vehicle quick enough, the car will automatically steer itself back into the lane. If the driver is departing the lane before placing the directional on, the alert will also engage.

Pre-Collision Braking – with the EyeSight sensors, when an obstacle is detected an alert is sounded for the driver to be cautious and prepare for what is ahead. In an event the brakes need to be applied before the driver has time to react, EyeSight Driver Assist Technology will engage the brakes to prevent impact and come to a full stop if necessary.

Pre-Collision Throttle Management – with an eye on the car in front of the driver, watching its movement, this feature will reduce power to the engine in the event the car in front accelerates then abruptly stops.  Cutting power to the engine enables faster braking for the driver, making a rear-end collision less likely to happen.

Blind Spot Protection/Lane Change Assist – provides a visual warning in each side mirror to make the driver aware of oncoming traffic approaching, which may not be visible if in the driver’s blind spot. The Subaru is equipped with radars in the bumper to sense an approaching vehicle that is typically hidden in the driver’s blind spot. To assist with safe lane changes, the visual cue will activate when a car is approaching on either the left or right side. If the driver turns on the signal to change lanes and the approaching car has not cleared the way, the warning light in the mirror will flash more vividly to warn the driver it is not yet safe to change lanes.

200 × 200Rear Cross-Traffic Alert – using the same sensors in the rear bumper, the safety system will alert the driver of an approaching vehicle from either the left or right side as the driver is in reverse gear, using both audio and visual warnings.

What’s even cooler – Customers are encouraged to try out the EyeSight Driver Assist Technology test at the Findlay Subaru Prescott. The EyeSight test provides a simulation of the Pre-Collision Automatic Breaking testing in the Crosstrek. Customers are instructed to drive the vehicle at 25 MPH, as it approaches an inflatable life-size SUV, the driver is then told to take his/her foot off the gas and the brake to experience Pre-Collision Automatic Breaking feature. 

“I really want to capture the faces of the people that test this. They all have a look of astonishment, I love it,” said Robinson.

Making it personal –

Customers and employees at the Prescott Subaru dealership have their own personal stories of how Subaru’s safety features were there when they needed it:

Robinson shared, “I was at Costco, parked next to a big truck, which made visibility difficult of oncoming traffic as I backed out.  I didn’t see the vehicle approaching me from behind and my Subaru provided an audio alert to warn me and automatically applied the brakes.” Christian drives a 2019 Ascent with the upgraded option of the Rear Cross Traffic Alert System.

Christian emphasized Subaru’s primary focus is on safety. Stating that they are always looking for new, innovative safety technology to not only protect the occupants but pedestrians as well. “They want to prevent accidents altogether rather than just surviving them. Subaru spends time and money on R&D for safety features.”

Product Specialist Casey Hines of Findlay Subaru Prescott shared a memorable story he had with a customer.  He was driving his Subaru when a javelina, infamous in Arizona, met the front of his bumper. Hines said the customer was back at Findlay Subaru shortly thereafter to get a new Subaru. To Hines surprise, the customer ended up hitting another javelina again impacting his front end. The customer came back to the Subaru dealership to get yet another Subaru.

Javon Frink, Product Specialist at the Findlay Subaru dealership, also had a customer who got into a wreck that totaled her car. “It looked like it could have been a fatal accident the way the car looked with the roof compacted.  She walked away with only a scratch on her hand and back to work the next day.” She came in to the dealership to share this story personally with Frink and was thankful that she was driving her Subaru Forester. She said she will always drive a Subaru because it saved her life.

See many other Subaru Survivor Stories

Subaru Protects the driver from the inside out

Subarus are constructed to withstand even the most drastic collisions.

The Subaru Protection Systems is designed to hold the vehicle’s structure in the event of a crash.  The advanced technology, sensor-deployed airbag system provides up to eight airbags to protect every passenger. Subaru’s unique design boxer engine has a low-profile design and drive train that will push down and away from the interior of the vehicle to protect the passengers from getting entrapped in case of a collision.

Subaru Symmetrical AWD – standard on all Subaru’s, these vehicles are made to be proactive on the road with grip, balanced handling and maximum traction control.

Check out this video to see a comparison on performance from 5 crossover models to see how Subaru out performed all the competitors. The test driver’s response to the handling, traction and balance of the Forester is awesome.

Link to Vehicle Dynamics Control video

Subaru takes its drivers and passengers’ safety to the next level, ensuring they are covered on all sides, front to back, top to bottom, inside and out.

Much like the IIHS, Subaru stays on top of the safety statistics to monitor areas that are vulnerable to increase the risk of collisions. The CDC reported in 2017 that more than 1,000 people in the US are injured in an accident involving a distracted driver. With smartphones attached to the eye gaze of the average American, Subaru identified a need to develop the DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System. Working in tandem with the EyeSight Driver Assist Technology, the DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System can detect when the driver’s attention has been off the road for too long. Using facial imaging and eyesight awareness detection, DriverFocus will use audio and visual alarms to regain the driver’s attention to the road ahead.  It’s like a built-in co-pilot!

On top of being the leading manufacturer in the IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK+ awards, Subaru also boasts 5-star safety ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and being named Kelley Blue Book’s 2018 Most Trusted Brand.

Would you believe?

In 1968 when two entrepreneurs, Malcolm Bricklin and Harvey Lamm, started Subaru in America, they came out with their first car, the 360, which was deemed the “Most Unsafe Car in America” by Consumer Reports.

It would be fair to say Subaru has made a stellar effort to redeem their name.

Northern Arizona’s Trusted Subaru Dealership

Findlay Subaru Prescott is an Arizona Subaru dealer that serves the Quad City region with a professional, courteous staff who go above and beyond for their customers. The Subaru dealerships offers new Subaru cars for sale or lease, as well as used Subarus and other makes and models.  We invite any driver to bring their vehicle onto the lot and into our service center to get the best care and maintenance from our certified service technicians.  We care for the safety of all drivers and passengers alike and are happy to provide standout service, so you and your vehicle can enjoy a long ride together. 

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