It’s official! The new 2012 Sonic has been named a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). This shouldn’t come as a surprise, though, seeing how this subcompact cruiser is equipped with two more air bags than its competitors and has a vehicle safety cage that is 60 percent high-strength steel.
The Sonic also features a LATCH (Lower Anchors and Top Tethers for Children) system, six months of OnStar service including automatic crash response and panic brake assist technology. Did I forget to mention how smart this subcompact is? Should you be involved in an accident, there are sensors that will diagnose the severity of impact and control the deployment of its 10 airbags.
The IIHS only awards Top Safety Picks to the vehicles that perform with the highest level of safety in their class. The ratings are based on how well they protect passengers in front and side crash tests, in rollovers via a roof strength test, and in simulated rear impacts to evaluate seat and head restraints for protection against neck injuries.
You can see how the Sonic reacts in two of these tests below. If you’re looking for a seriously safe subcompact that averages 40 mpg.