The 2016 Mercedes-Benz C-Class is the latest winner of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s TOP SAFETY PICK+ award.
The midsize luxury car earns good ratings in all five of the Institute’s crashworthiness evaluations — small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraints.
It also has a standard front crash prevention system that earns an advanced rating. An additional, optional system boosts the car’s front crash prevention rating to superior.
Although the C-Class was redesigned for 2015, IIHS only recently evaluated it for crashworthiness. In the challenging small overlap test, the car’s structure held up well with maximum intrusion into the occupant compartment of 4 inches. That was a big improvement over the earlier generation of the C-Class, which had intrusion of 20 inches at the footrest and earned a marginal rating.
Also notable are the results of the roof strength test. The C-Class was found to have a strength-to-weight ratio of 7, among the highest ever registered. A ratio of 4 or higher is required for a good rating. Roof strength is important for protection in a rollover crash.
To qualify for 2016 TOP SAFETY PICK+, a vehicle must earn good ratings in the five IIHS crashworthiness tests and an advanced or superior rating for front crash prevention.