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Cherry Hill, NJ, November 25, 2008 -- Subaru of America, Inc. announced today that four of its 2009 models have been named a 2009 'Top Safety Pick' by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The following vehicles each earned a 2009 'Top Safety Pick' in their category: Subaru Legacy for Mid-size Sedan, Subaru Impreza for Small Cars, Subaru Tribeca for Mid-size SUV and Subaru Forester for Small SUV.
"We are delighted that once again, Subaru vehicles are being recognized as 'Top Safety Picks'," said Tom Doll, executive vice president and CFO for Subaru of America. "These awards speak to the dedication of our engineers in making Subaru vehicles not only safe to drive, but also fun and affordable with all-wheel drive standard."
'Top Safety Pick' recognizes vehicles that do the best job of protecting people in front, side, and rear crashes based on good ratings in Institute tests. Winners are also required to have electronic stability control (ESC), which research shows significantly reduces crash risk.
"It is not a surprise that Subaru has again received 'Top Safety Pick' awards for its vehicles," says Institute President, Adrian Lund. "Subaru is a standout for 2009 because it has at least one Top Safety Pick in every vehicle class in which it competes. The Top Safety Pick awards speak to the commitment Subaru makes to produce safer vehicles."
The Institute's frontal crashworthiness evaluations are based on results of 40 mph frontal offset crash tests. Each vehicle's overall evaluation is based on measurements of intrusion into the occupant compartment, injury measures recorded on a Hybrid III dummy in the driver seat, and analysis of slow-motion film to assess how well the restraint system controlled dummy movement during the test.
Side evaluations are based on performance in a crash test in which the side of a vehicle is struck by a barrier moving at 31 mph. The barrier represents the front end of a pickup or SUV. Ratings reflect injury measures recorded on two instrumented SID-IIs dummies, assessment of head protection countermeasures, and the vehicle's structural performance during the impact. Injury measures obtained from the two dummies, one in the driver seat and the other in the back seat behind the driver, are used to determine the likelihood that a driver and/or passenger in a similar real-world crash would sustain serious injury to various parts of the body. The movements and contacts of the dummies' heads during the test also are evaluated. Structural performance is based on measurements indicating the amount of B-pillar intrusion into the occupant compartment.
Rear crash protection is rated according to a two-step procedure. Starting points for the ratings are measurements of head restraint geometry - the height of a restraint and its horizontal distance behind the back of the head of an average-size man. Seats with good or acceptable restraint geometry are tested dynamically using a dummy that measures forces on the neck. This test simulates a collision in which a stationary vehicle is struck in the rear at 20 mph. Seats without good or acceptable geometry are rated poor overall because they can't be positioned to protect many people.
About Subaru of America,
Subaru of America, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan. Headquartered in Cherry Hill, NJ, the company markets and distributes Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of nearly 600 dealers across the United States. Subaru makes the best-selling All-Wheel Drive car sold in America based on R.L. Polk & Co. new vehicle retail registration statistics calendar year-end 2007. In addition, Subaru boasts the most fuel efficient line-up of all-wheel drive products sold in the market today based on Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) fuel economy standards. All Subaru products are manufactured in zero- landfill production plants and Subaru of Indiana Automotive Inc. is the only U.S. automobile production plant to be designated a backyard wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation.