The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has developed a new crash test program to address passenger-side airbag systems, saying that automobile manufacturers were not prioritizing the safety of front-seat passengers as much as drivers.
The new "small overlap front crash test" sends only part of the front of a vehicle into a barrier, mimicking a collision with another vehicle or a tree.
It resulted in 10 out of the 13 midsize vehicles earning good ratings. Among them were the Ford Fusion, Honda Accord and Nissan Altima. A good or acceptable passenger-side rating will be required to qualify for the Institute’s 2018 Top Safety Pick award.
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The Vokswagen Passat and the Chevy Malibu, on the other hand, had marginal ratings due to insufficient airbag protection.
"The restraint system didn't do a good job of protecting the dummy's head from contacting the dash," senior research engineer Becky Mueller said in a statement.
NBC reached out to Volkswagen and Chevrolet for comment.
For the full crash results, click here.