Structural upgrades helped improve safety score
The IIHS has awarded the 2016 Ford F-150 with a Top Safety Pick award, and has revealed that it’s the only pickup to receive a Good rating in the difficult small overlap crash test. It’s also the only truck in the group to garner the award. Two of the most popular body styles — a crew cab and an extended cab — were tested to determine if changes made to the truck would improve its safety performance.
The small overlap test replicates what would happen if a vehicle hits a tree, pole, or clips another car that’s crossed over the dividing lines. SuperCab variants of the 2015 Ford F-150 didn’t perform as well as the extended cab model because it lacked the structural components that the SuperCrew had that enabled it to earn a Good rating. This gap in safety came to light last year after the IIHS conducted a retest of the F-150 that evaluated more than just the crew cab model. For the 2016 model year, Ford has improved the F-150 SuperCab structural components, enabling both body styles to earn the highest score and the Top Safety Pick award.
An optional forward collision warning system gives the F-150 a Basic rating for forward collision prevention. In order for a vehicle to receive a Top Safety Pick+ award, it must earn a Good rating on all crash tests and an Advanced or Superior rating in the forward collision prevention test. In terms of roof strength, the F-150 earns a Good rating.
“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 IIHS’ 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.”
Competitors such as the Chevrolet Silverado 1500, Toyota Tundra CrewMax, and GMC Sierra 1500 received a Marginal rating in the small overlap front crash test due to some intrusion into the cabin that can compromise the driver’s survival space. The Ram 1500 Crew Cab and Quad Cab, on the other hand, received a Marginal rating overall land a Poor structural rating due to the force of the crash pushing the door hinge pillar, instrument panel, and steering column back to the driver dummy. Foot well intrusion was also a major issue on all of the F-150‘s competitors due to parts of the interior such as the pedals getting shoved against the lower part of the driver’s legs.