The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) announced yesterday that the 2006 Honda Civic has achieved the Institute's new "Top Safety Pick - Gold" award, after earning "Good" ratings in frontal, side impact and rear impact tests and measurements. The 2006 Civic is the only small car and one of only five vehicles to earn this designation from the IIHS.
A "Top Safety Pick - Gold" award combines crash results achieved from frontal offset 40 mph, side impact and rear crash tests with static seat measurements for the head restraints. A result of "Good" in all three categories is required to earn "Top Safety Pick - Gold" status. The 2006 Honda Civic is the only small car to have ever earned a "good" rating in the IIHS Side Impact and frontal offset test. Due to a combination of "Good" results in the six categories comprising the frontal offset test, it was also awarded a "Good - Best Pick" rating for that category.
"The IIHS 'Top Safety Pick - Gold' designation validates Honda's dedication to creating safe vehicles regardless of size or price," said John Mendel, senior vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "The 2006 Civic demonstrates that a mainstream and affordable compact-size vehicle can achieve the highest levels of crash protection in these tests."
In keeping with the Honda "Safety for Everyone" initiative, standard safety systems in the 2006 Civic include the exclusive-to-Honda Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) Body Structure. The ACE Body Structure design is intended to help manage the forces of frontal collisions and enhance crash compatibility in vehicle-to-vehicle frontal crashes. Conceived around "real world" safety, this newly developed front-end frame structure incorporates new upper and lower frame members to significantly enhance energy dispersion in frontal collisions.
All models of the all-new 2006 Civic provide a long list of standard safety equipment including side curtain airbags, driver's and front passenger's side airbags with the Honda's front passenger Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS), active front seat head restraints and a 4-channel anti-lock braking system (ABS) with Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD).
The 2006 Civic marks the introduction of Honda's new Active Head Restraint front seat design that enhances the seat's ability to minimize the potential for neck injuries caused by rear end collisions. In the event of a rear collision, a person's body is pushed against the seatback. The pressure from the seatback is transmitted mechanically from the lumbar plate via links that push the head restraint upward and forward to help to equalize the forces acting on the head, neck and spine.
Honda's commitment to safety extends to pedestrians as well. To help reduce pedestrian injuries in the event of a collision, the Civic's hood and fender areas are designed to help absorb energy if contacted by an adult or child pedestrian.
The all-new eighth generation 2006 Honda Civic debuted in early September with prices starting at $14,360 for the Civic DX Coupe and $14,560 for the Civic DX Sedan. The Civic Hybrid, which achieves an EPA-rated city/highway fuel economy of 49/51 mpg, went on sale October 19 and the high-performance Civic Si version with 197-horsepower debuted December 1. Additionally, Motor Trend magazine recently named the Civic its 2006 Car of the Year.