IIHS names Nissan Versa a Top Safety Pick

March 12, 2012 12:00 AM

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has named the Nissan Versa a Top Safety Pick for the first time.

The Versa is a popular option for drivers on a budget, but the car hasn't exactly excelled in safety tests in the past. The new version of the Versa sedan, however, was able to pass all the IIHS crash tests with a "good" rating. It also withstood 4.95 times its weight in the roof strength test - the IIHS says a car must hold at least four times its weight to earn the Top Safety Pick designation.

The results are a change from previous years, when the Versa earned only an "acceptable" rating in the side and rollover tests, keeping it from being named a Top Safety Pick. Drivers should know that this only applies to the new Versa sedan, as the hatchback version of the car is still the same as previous years. Nissan plans to introduce an updated hatchback next year, reports Autoblog.

While a vehicle's safety features are key to avoiding accidents, it's also important that drivers keep up with their auto maintenance. Regular tune-ups and brake service can help drivers avoid potentially dangerous situations due to mechanical faults.

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