Last post on Feb 26, 2013 at 5:40 AM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
What is this discussion about?
Subaru, Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Sedan, Wagon
Your Community Leaders are ateixeira and rsholland.
Jul 27, 2004 (1:46 pm)
To muddy the waters some more:
IIHS rates the Toyota Camry above the Legacy in the side-impact, with a 'Good' rating. Yet, this past Monday, Toyota announced that it was recalling 130,000 2004 Camry sedans "to fix faulty side airbags that might not properly inflate in an accident (New York Times).
And, again, FWIW: Legacy rated higher than the following on the side-impact test with the 'Marginal' rating: Altima, Mazda 6, Freelander, Wrangler, Stratus. And, below: Camry, Tribute/Escape, Mailibu.
On the frontal crashes: total scores, ahead of - Passat, Volvo S60, Mazda 6, Acura TSX, Infiniti G35; same as: Saab 9-3, Volvo S80, Honda Accord.
Most cars have not been tested.
Again, are we getting carried away here? A disappointing IIHS result,sure, but - as the other Subaru tests and comparisons indicate - still, a very safe car, near or at the top by almost every standard.
#3211 of 10833 Relax!
Jul 27, 2004 (1:56 pm)
As a new 05 owner, I can understand the disappointment, but I think people are blowing the results out of proportion. We're not driving in some death machine here!
Let's look at it in a logical light. The 04 Legacy had good front and side impact ratings based on the NHTSA tests. The 05 is based heavily on the 04. Also Subaru has been focusing on vehicle safety so it would be a logical conclusion that the 05 should be as good as the 04 if it were tested on the NHTSA test.
Now, the IIHS test is brand new and appears to be quite different from the NHTSA in several criteria. The most marked difference is the the IIHS uses dummies representing 5th percentile females whereas the NHTSA uses "average" sized adults. Even changing the test criteria a little can result in big changes in differences.
So far we have two data points with the IIHS tests (RAV4 and Legacy). Before making any conclusions, it would be interesting to see how some other cars that scored well on the NHTSA test fare with the new IIHS test too. I have a feeling we'll see quite a variation.
As for the 05 Legacy, we still need to see the NHTSA scores as well to make any meaningful comparisons.
Will Subaru and other car manufacturers improve the test performance in the future? Of course they will! Since these are controlled tests, it is quite possible to tweak features in any vehicle to produce good results. It's great PR.
Should Subaru allow people to return their 05s? No way. Unless they advertised that the 05s would score a certain rating on a given test that they didn't meet (which no manufacturer in their right mind would do ex-ante), or there's some regulatory criteria they don't meet, then there's really no case.
We're driving in over-engineered vehicles that were unimaginable 10 years ago. Yes, it is disappointing that the 05 Legacy didn't fare well in this specific test. But not all accidents happen in the same controlled way the IIHS test occurs. There many other variables that factor into accidents, it would be impossible for any car manufacturer to take into account all of them.
Jul 27, 2004 (2:07 pm)
The limited information available about the Australian testing methods makes a comparison impossible. We don't know:
1. The weight and shape of the Australian simulated vehicle.
2. The weight and size of the Australian test "dummy."
3. The exact impact point in the U.S. test.
4. The energy absorbing qualities of the barriers (Australian uses aluminum, which most vehicles are not made of).
5. The height of the test barriers in both tests.
With all the variables, you just can't make a comparison between the tests. What you can do is compare vehicles within the SAME test, e.g. the Toyota against the Subaru. Toyota clearly produced a vehicle with better safety characteristics for the conditions of this test.
Regarding the Toyota Camry air bag issue, the recall doesn't affect all Camrys. The vehicle tested didn't have a problem with the airbags.
We'll never have perfect information prior to any purchase of any product. You use what information is available and make the best decision you can. For me, until proven otherwise by further testing, I'll take the two IIHS tests at face value and conclude the Legacy protects occupants to a lesser degree than the RAV4.
Jul 27, 2004 (3:00 pm)
Also, note that even within the same test, the results are different. The IIHS website lists all the results from both of the Legacy tests. The first one, while it did not have an air bag, had less structural deformation than the second one.
Jul 27, 2004 (4:11 pm)
Do you have a link for the results from the first test?
Jul 27, 2004 (5:07 pm)
It's just astounding that two tests could yield such different results: it's the safest care ever in Australia!!!; it's a death trap in the U.S. Go figure. I wonder if the differences are the result of random "noise," or if instead one testing method is superior to the other. I wish Subaru would enlighten us on this.
#3219 of 10833 Re: [safetyfirst]
Jul 27, 2004 (5:42 pm)
You shouldn't equate these results to being "the safest" nor a "death trap". Those tests only give you a basic idea of the safety of particular model under a very specific scenario. They by no mean relate to the real world.
In fact, most car companies design their cars to do well in the tests, not necessarily to do well in the vast set of cirumstances encountered in the real world. The notable exceptions to that rule are Volvo, Saab, and M-B, all three companies spend a lot of money designing and testing for a wide set of circumstances that go well beyond the regular tests.