The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s newest small overlap crash test has proved challenging for many vehicles, but the 2014 Mercedes-Benz M-Class has now been awarded with the Top Safety Pick + award thanks to its “Good” rating in the small overlap test.
This rating, which is a first for any Mercedes model, applies to 2014 M-Class models built after August 2013, as Mercedes-Benz reinforced the door sills of the M-Class to improve performance in the small overlap test. These improvements clearly paid off, as the IIHS reports that the M-Class maintained the driver’s space well, meaning that the risk of significant injuries is low. The M-Class also received “Good” ratings in all other IIHS tests which include moderate overlap front, side crash test, roof strength, and head restraints and seats. The only Mercedes model other than the M-Class that has been tested in the small overlap test was the 2013 Mercedes-Benz C-Class, which received a “Marginal” rating, preventing it from receiving the Top Safety Pick + accolade.
The Top Safety Pick + rating is reserved for models that achieve at least an “Acceptable” rating in the small overlap front crash test and a “Good” rating in each of the other tests. The small overlap test is particularly difficult because it is meant to simulate striking an obstacle like a telephone pole, meaning that the barrier impacts only 25 percent of the car’s front area.
See the video below for a full replay of the 2014 Mercedes-Benz M-Class’ small overlap front crash test.