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Subaru BRZ, Toyota 86 Earn Top Safety Marks from the IIHS

The models enter their second generation with welcome nice distinction from the IIHS Automotive columnist: , Updated:

When it comes to car safety, people often take for granted the level of safety a model offers naturally grows with the size of the vehicle. This is sometimes true, especially in the event of a collision with a smaller vehicle, but it's a misconception that the level of safety a model offers depends on it being big.  

To wit, the new, second-generation editions of the Subaru BRZ and Toyota GR86, two of the industry's smallest offerings, have just earned top marks in IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety) safety tests.

And this is a first in the model's history since 2015. Specifically, the Subaru BRZ and Toyota GR86 received IIHS Top Safety Pick+ awards, the highest honour bestowed by the organization.

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2022 Toyota GR  86
Photo: V.Aubé
2022 Toyota GR 86

In crash tests, both coupes passed with flying colours, earning the highest possible Good ratings in all types of collisions. The headlights also received top marks, as did the optional front crash prevention system. Ease of use of the child seat anchor points received the second highest rating of Acceptable.

An amusing, if not unusual, fact about the ratings received by both models: the manual transmission variants don't receive a Plus (+) rating because the forward collision warning system can't be included with them.

For the rest, of course, the stick shift models performed just as well in the crash and headlight tests.