The United States' Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently conducted its crash tests for the all-new Toyota Corolla, which began production earlier this year. However, while the Corolla earned "Good" marks in the moderate overlap front, side, roof strength, and head-restraints-and-seats test, the compact sedan only managed a "Marginal" rating for the small overlap test.
According to the organization, the small overlap test is designed to replicate "what happens when the front corner of a vehicle strikes another vehicle or an object like a tree or a utility pole." For the test itself, 25% of a vehicle's front end on the driver side strikes a 5ft-tall rigid barrier at 40mph (64kph).
Based on the organization's findings after the test, the crash-test dummy's position in the driver seat in relation to the door frame, steering wheel and instrument panel, indicated that the driver's survival space "was not maintained well." During the crash, the seatbelt allowed the dummy to move too far forward, and the door hinge pillar and the instrument panel intruded extensively into the cabin which increases the possibility of a left lower leg injury.
"The driver's space was seriously compromised by intruding structure," the organization's report on the Corolla's small overlap crash test said. "Lower interior intrusion measured as much as 32cm at the lower hinge pillar. Measures from the dummy indicate that injuries to the left lower leg would be possible in a crash of this severity."
The IIHS added, however, that despite the car's marginal rating in the small overlap test, the Corolla is still qualified for its Top Safety Pick award for the good ratings it received in the four other tests.
If you're viewing this on a mobile device and can't see the video, please click here.