Breaking! IIHS To Crash Test Tesla Model 3 Next Week

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First, the bad news. Negative headlines are everywhere today, as the NHTSA has sent a letter to Tesla to stop claiming that the Tesla Model 3 has the lowest probability of injury of any car tested by NHTSA. It seems that the NHTSA wants automakers to just say they have 5 star ratings and leave it at that. NHTSA also made this request of Tesla back when it was sharing info that the Model S (Tesla’s only car on the market at the time) had the best score in NHTSA history, long before the Model 3 beat it.

Image courtesy Tesla

This is consistent with the game that every automaker has been happy to play for years.  They just want to run feel-good ads that their cars are “safe.” Tesla has very different objectives. Tesla has spent a huge amount of effort to make its cars not just meet safety standards around the world, but be the safest cars you can buy. Tesla doesn’t want customers to think their cars are “safe.” It wants to get credit for its superior engineering effort and the expensive high-strength materials it uses in every car. Why should Tesla settle for the same “5 star” language that most cars get?

The real problems are the tests and the reporting are designed to let everyone have something good to say about their cars so they can sell them. Tesla wants to disrupt the apple cart and show that it has cars that are safer than anything ever sold.

Photo by Kyle Field | CleanTechnica

Since I wrote my article in January on the 5 ways Tesla saves lives, Tesla has won several more awards for its safety. A month ago it got Europe’s highest overall safety rating, and just a few days ago Tesla earned a perfect 5 star rating from Australia’s safety agency. As I have mentioned before, unlike some other automakers, Tesla doesn’t do much to customize the emissions (since there are none) or safety of its cars to meet the market requirements. The company sets a bar far higher than any market requires.

Insurance Institute For Highway Safety (IIHS) To Test Model 3 Next Week

In seeing all of these negative news articles, it occurred to me that there is a solution to this bickering. If the IIHS would just test the Model 3, then Tesla could get some more detailed safety data from that organization and advertise that instead of the rigorous NHTSA data that NHTSA doesn’t want people to use. Maybe the IIHS will be more open to promoting its results. (Of course, there’s also a possibility it won’t.)

15 minutes later, IIHS replied that it will start testing the Tesla Model 3 next week. Let’s hope that Tesla is able to earn the coveted IIHS Top Safety Pick + award, and if the test results warrant, let’s hope Tesla is allowed to promote that it is superior to the other cars that have earned the same award. In that case, Tesla can disengage from the NHTSA. Sometimes the best way to win a fight is to not fight.

Use my Tesla referral link to get 1,000 miles of free Supercharging on a Tesla Model S, Model X, or Model 3, here’s the link: (but if someone else helped you, please use their link).

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Paul Fosse

I have been a software engineer for over 30 years, first developing EDI software, then developing data warehouse systems. Along the way, I've also had the chance to help start a software consulting firm and do portfolio management. In 2010, I took an interest in electric cars because gas was getting expensive. In 2015, I started reading CleanTechnica and took an interest in solar, mainly because it was a threat to my oil and gas investments. Follow me on Twitter @atj721 Tesla investor. Tesla referral code:

Paul Fosse has 230 posts and counting. See all posts by Paul Fosse