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Old 11-29-2003, 11:03 AM
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X5 scores highest in IIHS lowspeed test - WSJ

The Wall Street Journal - 11/28/03

Midsize SUVs Not So Tough
In Low-Speed Crash Tests

Associated Press

WASHINGTON -- Midsize sport-utility vehicles fared poorly in bumper crash tests performed by the insurance industry, including several that needed more than $2,000 in repairs following 5 mph collisions.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rated nine vehicles, in results released Friday. None got the institute's highest rating, but the 2003 Honda Pilot earned the second-highest rating. The Pilot sustained an average of $404 in damages in each of four tests.

Auto makers have criticized the bumper ratings, saying they have nothing to do with the safety of the vehicle. But the institute defends them, saying no vehicle should sustain major damage at the 5 mph test speed.

"The manufacturers of these SUVs try to create a rough-and-tough image for them, but their bumpers are flimsy," said Adrian Lund, the institute's chief operating officer.

The institute performed four tests, crashing the front and rear bumpers into a flat barrier and a pole. The tests are designed to reflect fender benders common in heavy traffic or parking lots.

The 2003 Kia Sorento sustained the most damage, with an average of $1,646 per test. The 2003 Toyota 4Runner, 2003 Infiniti FX35, 2004 Chrysler Pacifica and 2004 Cadillac SRX also sustained average damages of more than $1,200 per test, earning the institute's lowest rating.

The Cadillac SRX and the Chrysler Pacifica both sustained $2,814 in damages, the highest amount, when they were backed into a pole. In each case, the tailgates weren't protected by the bumper and had to be replaced, Lund said.

The 2004 Mitsubishi Endeavor, 2004 Lexus RX330 and 2003 Nissan Murano all received the institute's third-highest rating. Each sustained an average of $789 to $988 on the tests.

No midsize SUV from the 2001 to 2003 model years has earned the institute's highest rating on the bumper tests. The institute has given its second-best rating to four midsize SUVs: the Pilot, BMW X5, the Acura MDX and the Chevrolet Trailblazer, which has the same bumper design as the Oldsmobile Bravada and the GMC Envoy.
Copyright 2003 Associated Press

Updated November 28, 2003 3:29 p.m.
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Old 11-29-2003, 11:15 AM
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sounds like the people who wrote the article are putting together several year's worth of data, b/c the latest crash tests did not include an X5, or at least it's not mentioned in their press release, or on the story dateline aired last night.

the way that article reads, u would think the X5 just won some prize. doesn't appear to be the case....they liked the pilot best, but even that didnt perform all that well, in their opinions.

dateline on sunday nite will air high-speed crash tests of those same SUV's...

tune in.
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