IIHS: One Pickup Earns Top Rating In New Crash Tests

ford f-150 crash test IIHS

It’s a very good day and a not so very good day for certain truck makers following new crash test safety results from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. In the latest round of tests, the Ford F-150 is the only pickup to earn the Institute’s top rating. At the other end of the spectrum, Ram Trucks scored poorly.

In all, only three out of seven large pickup trucks earned an acceptable or higher rating for occupant protection in a small overlap front crash. All of the pickups except the F-150 had moderate to severe intrusion into the driver footwell area.

Researchers tested two body styles of each 2016 model-year pickup, both the crew cab and the extended cab. The IIHS decided to to test both types instead of just one because of what happened last time when it found structural differences impacted tests results of the Ford F-150 SuperCab and the SuperCrew.

Vehicles that earn a basic rating for front crash prevention plus good ratings in the small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraint evaluations qualify for TOP SAFETY PICK. To qualify for 2016 TOP SAFETY PICK+, a vehicle must earn good ratings in the five crashworthiness tests and an advanced or superior rating for front crash prevention.


This year, the 2016 F-150 SuperCab improved its ranking over 2015 and joins the F-150 SuperCrew in earning a 2016 TOP SAFETY PICK award when equipped with Ford’s optional basic-rated forward collision warning system.

ford f150 iihs test 2

“Ford is leading the way among large pickup manufacturers when it comes to protecting people in a range of crashes and offering technology to warn drivers of imminent frontal crashes,” says Raul Arbelaez, vice president of the Institute’s Vehicle Research Center. “We commend Ford for taking last year’s test results to heart and upgrading protection for SuperCab occupants in small overlap crashes.”


At the other end of the spectrum, Ram Trucks did not fare well in the testing, scoring the worst of the bunch.

The worst-performing pickups were the Ram 1500 Crew Cab and the Ram 1500 Quad Cab.

2016 ram 1500 iihs

Both earned a marginal rating overall and a poor rating for structure. The force of the crash pushed the door-hinge pillar, instrument panel and steering column back toward the driver dummy.

In the Ram Crew Cab test, the dummy’s head contacted the front airbag but rolled around the left side as the steering column moved to the right, allowing the head to approach the intruding windshield pillar.

2016 ram quad cab iihs

You can check out the rating grid below and read the entire IIHS release here.

iihs truck crash tests

Photo Credit: IIHS
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