Safest Cars of 2008

Car safety news comes out on Thursday. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is releasing the list of 2008 models with the highest safety scores.

Front and side impacts account for five out of six fatal crashes.

Thirty four cars made the Insurance Institute's safety list: a big change over just thirteen last year. Winners, including the Honda Accord
and Audi A–3 among midsize cars, hold up best in crash tests.

And all have electronic stability control, to protect against slick spots and rollovers.

Three minivans made the list including the Honda Odyssey. A number of midsize SUVs won too: two BMWs, the newer Hyundai and Saturn models, and a Toyota are all new winners in that group.

Safety is just one consideration, especially with gas prices high and rising.

New, too, to the list this year is the category of large pick–ups.
Standard side airbags and electronic stability control made the Toyota Tundra the sole winner.

Electronic stability control will be mandatory on new cars by 2012. The Insurance Institute says as a standard feature it could prevent ten thousand fatal crashes every year.

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