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Old 09-22-2003, 19:26   #1 (permalink)
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U.S.A.:MAZDA6 Sedan Awarded Top Scores in Recent Crash Tests

The Auto Channel

IRVINE, Calif., Sept. 22 -- The MAZDA6 sport sedan has been named a "Best Pick" in the most recent round of high-speed frontal offset crash testing performed by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). The MAZDA6 also scored a perfect five-star rating in recent full-frontal crash testing performed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), marking it as one of the highest safety-rated vehicles available.

"Mazda is committed to building and selling fun-to-drive cars, trucks and minivans that maximize the safety of their passengers," said Jim O'Sullivan, president and CEO of Mazda North American Operations. "To achieve that, we design and develop impact-protection systems intended to minimize occupant injury as well as vehicle damage and repair costs."

IIHS' frontal offset crash into a deformable barrier is especially demanding of a car's structure, as only the driver's side hits the barrier rather than the full-frontal impact as used in the NHTSA test, and it is performed at 40-mph, rather than 35-mph for the NHTSA testing. This means that the full force of the impact must be dissipated through a much smaller area of the vehicle's front-end structure. According to IIHS' rating system, the MAZDA6's score of "Good" (the highest possible) means that in a real-world crash of similar severity, a belted driver would likely walk away without serious injury.

For its testing, the NHTSA crashes vehicles into a fixed barrier at 35 mph. Instruments measure the force of impact to each dummy's head, chest, and legs. According to NHTSA, MAZDA6's five-star rating (the highest possible) means that a belted front-seat occupant would have a ten-percent or lower chance of serious injury.

In order for the MAZDA6 to avoid accidents, though, it is equipped with active safety equipment including sure-handling four-wheel independent suspension, power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering, four-wheel anti-lock brakes and available traction control.
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