Last post on Jan 06, 2008 at 7:26 PM
You are in the Buick Rendezvous
What is this discussion about?
Buick Rendezvous, Suspension, SUV
#98 of 132 you provided a more inofmred article!
Sep 30, 2007 (8:00 pm)
steve, it appears your linked article is different than the one I linked. Yours shows the methodology used and may answer some of spike 99's questions. Basically in the article you linked, it says they are using SCORE's methodolgy and evaluation, not only IIHS and NHSTA.
Hope that helps you spike99.
"Informed for Life releases SCORE (Statistical Combination of Risk Elements) data each year, which combine all the available safety data from the federal government and the IIHS, along with the role of weight and the presence of stability control, into a single number for each particular model, making it easier to compare vehicles of varying sizes or body types.
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The SCORE is calculated according to the role that each element plays in general fatal accidents. For instance, as about 26% of national accident fatalities occur in a side impact, 26% of the SCORE depends on the vehicle's rated side-impact protection.
The system, which has been implemented for about five years, more closely matches the fatality rate on a model-by-model basis than either IIHS or NHTSA ratings alone. And it's easy to decipher; it's on a scale that's proportional to risk, with the average passenger car ranked 100.
So, for instance, a SCORE of 150 means that the relative risk of driver fatality is 50% higher than for the average passenger car. In the group's 2007 list, the most dangerous vehicle, the Buick Rendezvous, at 161, has more than three times the relative risk of fatality than the Hyundai Entourage and Kia Sedona minivans, at 51."
#99 of 132 methodology for evaluation - SCORE
Sep 30, 2007 (8:03 pm)
Anyone interested in knowing why FORBES rated the RDV as #1 most dangerous, or why it has 3x more of a fatality rate than a smiliar sized Hyundai or Kia minivans, can go to the following website. It appears Forbes had based their ratings completely on the SCORE ratings....
#100 of 132 SCORE website answers questions
Sep 30, 2007 (8:12 pm)
If you click on "ranking lists" you will see that the Kia van they refer to has side airags and ESC. And it is rated at 51.
The RDV they tested does not have side airbags and does not have traction control. And it was rated at 161.
Therefore, it appears that the SCORE test results of the RDV that FORBES used to say the RDV was the "most dangerous" is a RDV which has no side airbags and no traction control. This would most likely be the CX model.
Unforunately since it appears they did not test a CXL or ULTRA model that DOES have side airbags and traction control, we don't know what the results would be in these cases.
So yes, the FORBES article is "slightly' misprepresenting the fact that "NOT ALL" RDV's don't have side airbags or traction control like the one tested with SCORE on informed for life's website... That is slightly misleading... They should have at least made the distinction that only base CX models were tested for SCORE and that the front-wheel drive CXL and ULTRA models may have a much higher rating (or lower SCORE rating) because they DO have side airbags and traction control as standard equipment.
#101 of 132 Re: methodology for evaluation - SCORE [hawaiianguy]
by Stever@Edmunds HOST
Sep 30, 2007 (8:19 pm)
I haven't been to that site for a while - he's done a big make-over. In spite of Forbe's use of his methodology, the SCORE ratings haven't made much of a splash out in the real world. The plus is he tells you how he comes up with the ratings.
As I recall, one criticism of that site is that is doesn't give much (if any) weight to the score of a vehicle having ABS brakes, and perhaps some other "safety" features.
 And saying "one model of the Rendezvous" isn't as safe as one model of a Sedona doesn't sell as many magazines.
#102 of 132 sometimes you CAN get everything you want...
Sep 30, 2007 (9:15 pm)
"The plus is he tells you how he comes up with the ratings."
spike99, well, if it hadn't been for steve posting that link, i would not have known how they come up with the ratings either.
in any case you got your wish and the website lists very detailed methodology as to how the ratings were obtained...
(it is a bit complicated looking to me so I haven't personally taken the time to try to understand what he's doing.. I basically assume if it was good enough for forbes, then it must make "some" sense...)...
#103 of 132 on an interesting note....
Oct 01, 2007 (12:10 am)
steve, you said: "I should have said "make their SUVs safer." "
If you click on informed for life.org and go to their 2008 vehicle ratings, you will notice that the new 2008 Buick Enclave SUV (rendezvous replacement) is in the top 3% for 2008. It seems that the above statement you made is a huge understatement if the ratings are correct. Notice the Enclave does have both stabilitrac and side airbags.
Again, I am really curious how a traction control and side airbag equiped RDV CXL or ULTRA would've fared in their rating system...
#104 of 132 When all is said and done...
Oct 01, 2007 (8:32 pm)
When all is said and done..... I still don't know under what "detailed conditions" the RDV is at most risk for roll overs. Or, as some would write at a high level, why the RDV is "#1 - Dangerious vehicle on the road". Is it because of under steer, is it because of over steer, is it because lack of tire (rubber) traction on the sharp corners, does it lack pavement grip in the rain, etc, etc.???? Why???
Anyone can state a vehicle is "the best" or "is the worst". If you or I compare our own two different vehciles (like my wife's vehicle against my vehicle) against each other (even a pickup against a car), we would each assign them a different number. A different number based on our exact tests (like towing power, sharp cornering, front crashes, etc. etc.). But behind that "rolled up" single output number, every author has to clearly explain "why???". Why is that specific model of vehicle "at higher risk" and under what detailed conditions create situation???
Based on the details of "the detailed why??" (and the pattern they can prove after repeating the same tests over and over again), I might go out and try to reduce that risk as well. Let's say for example.... A pattern was showing a front dive in a sharp corner at high speeds, the vehicle slides and its front tires start to loose traction. Thus, slide, off the road and roll over (in the ditch). (again, this is an example situation). If this was true, I would try to find a way to lower that Roll Over risk myself. Yes, I would buy HD shocks or even install HD coil springs in the front. Thus, stopping its front from diving down (if that's what the tests showed) in the first place. And I would also compare their brand of tire to the brand and size of tire on my current RDV. Does their exact tire also apply to my exact vehicle's tires??? I do know that when someone "spits out stats" of comparing same product groupings (or even if comparing apples to oranges), one has to explain why. And, the author does have the ethical obligation (to their readers) to explain "the pattern" that appears in their test.... Is it tires, is it under design suspension (that create's "too much" front end dive) or is it some other reason???
To me, here's an example of what the author should have wrote - to share with the public...
After xxx tests of repeatable / consistant results, our test lab gives vehicle brand of ..... "#1 highest roll over risks because of .... under these road conditions. And during these road conditions, these tests also showed .... behavior before that crash - which is a possible engineering weak area. The output of these tests only apply to of its .... to .... years of the vehicle model ..... Its other model (or all models in these years) are included (or explained) from the sampling size. Based on multiple tests (show the detailed table and output numbers), it is also recommended that vehicle be improved in the following areas.... (pattern of concern area). Where possible, avoid these driving conditions or change one's driving style - during these .... conditions.
With this info, I can read it, it has details, I analyze the details, determine if the details applies to my vehicle, determine if these tests apply to my driving style or driving conditions, and after some more thought, I would decide if spending "safety increase" dollars "out of my own pocket" is worth it. Worth it more me... In this case, suspension upgrade in .... areas...
And if tests or stats gathering / output was used to announce the "best safety" or best family mini-SUV brand of vehicle (for 2007), I would expect the same type of detailed reporting. Why is it the best, under what conditions, compared against what other exact vehicles, compared if driver was a woman, man or inexperienced teenager, etc. etc. Again, why is the "the best" in detailed and supporing info...
#105 of 132 correlation between SCORE & death rates
Oct 02, 2007 (11:14 am)
I hear what you are saying. And I totally AGREE that that type of review would be much more helpful to anyone looking to upgrade their vehicle.
Unfortunately ALL informed for life is doing is using their "SCORE" methodology which is a mathematical weighted formula that calculates a result based on IIHS and NHSTA as well as other information like vehicle weight, traction control and side airbags.
It seems that the underlying premise is that when the SCORE numbers are plotted against the death rate, there appears to be a correlation.
So what they are doing is just telling you that they think that the SCORE number is a good "predictor" of an automotive fatality.
Again, my conclusion would be that just because it may be a dangerous vehicle to have a high "SCORE" number, it doesn't mean you are "more likely" to get into an accident. It just means that the people who determine SCORE think that IF you get into an accident in a vehicle with a high SCORE number, your fatality risk is higher.
One question I would like answered is whether the "fatality" risk is talking about driver only or drivers and passengers. I think that could be one flaw in the analysis, since usually NHSTA and/or IIHS usually rate the vehicle between safety of driver and/or other passengers, I think.. Again, if the SCORE analysis was just based on general fatality data without being specific to which occupants were most at risk, then it is not as helpful as more specific data or analysis could be...
But then again, that's what statistics are. They try to just take data and find a pattern. But I'm saying you can also be a bit more detailed in your statistical analysis too...
Oct 02, 2007 (11:21 am)
" In spite of Forbe's use of his methodology, the SCORE ratings haven't made much of a splash out in the real world."
Steve, if you look under (III) Predicting Fatality Rates, on the home page of informed for life.org, you see where they show a graph that supports their premise that when SCORE is plotted against the death rate, there "appears" to be a correlation.
Can you confirm that SCORE hasn't made a "splash in the real world"? Are you saying that you believe the critics and/or that his methodolgy is inaccurate???
If you have any links that discuss these points let me know (you said you recall some negatives were the lack of factoring ABS, wondering if you had an article or something like that).
I would be interested to hearing the other side of the argument. All I have to go on right now is their own home page as to the validity of SCORE when used as a predictor of the fatality rate.
#107 of 132 SCORE may not be "perfect", but it appears better than NHSTA or IIHS alone.
Oct 02, 2007 (11:32 am)
Taken directly from informed for life's website:
"In IIHS's 2005 status report "The Risk of Dying" driver fatality rate data are provided for 199, 1999-2002 model year vehicles, for which statistically significant crash test rating data are available to enable meaningful SCORE calculations. As can be observed from the data plot below, a significant correlation does exist.
**This is not the case when attempting to correlate individual risk factors, such as IIHS's frontal impact rating, or NHTSA's frontal impact rating or vehicle weight (see the Elements of Risk page). Only through combining these risk elements in a weighted manner does a significant correlation appear."