Logging another win in the safety game, electric vehicle owners are putting in a lot fewer injury claims than owners of identical non-electric vehicles from the same years.
Electric vehicles have long been shown to have significant safety advantages, thanks to bigger crumple zones, low center of gravity thanks to big batteries on the bottom, less chance (no chance) of a gas tank exploding, and some other potential benefits. Tesla vehicles have topped the charts when it comes to the detailed scores the NHTSA logs to calculate chance of injury in an accident (though, only gives simple official ratings), and other electric models have typically performed well as well.
Now, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that “an updated analysis of insurance data shows injury claims are substantially less frequent for [electric] vehicles.”
With regards to 2011–2019 models that are available both as electric and as gasoline-powered vehicles, the analysis found that drivers and passengers of the electric versions were 40% less likely to report injury claims. 40% less likely is a huge difference.
The analysis looked at 9 different vehicle models.
This news trailed recent IIHS ratings of new electric vehicles on the US market. The 2021 Volvo XC40 Recharge lived up to Volvo’s safety-focused reputation and scored a TOP SAFETY PICK+ rating, which is the highest possible rating. The 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E, meanwhile, got a TOP SAFETY PICK rating. The former falls into the “small SUV” category while the latter falls into the “midsize SUV” category, according to the IIHS (vehicle classification systems vary, and some consider the Mach-E a compact crossover).