The Audi e-tron electric SUV is officially the first battery-electric vehicle to earn a “2019 TOP SAFETY PICK+ award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety” (IIHS).

The IIHS made the announcement today after releasing the crash test results:

“The e-tron, introduced for the 2019 model year, is a plug-in battery-electric vehicle with no gasoline or diesel engine to help power the car. The e-tron fulfills the criteria to earn a TOP SAFETY PICK+ award with standard equipment. To qualify for the award, a vehicle must earn good ratings in six crashworthiness evaluations, as well as an advanced or superior rating for front crash prevention and a good headlight rating.”

In 2017, Tesla Model S achieved a good score, but it failed to get the top IIHS crash rating.

The Chevy Bolt EV also achieved a “Top Safety Pick” from IIHS, but it wasn’t awarded the ‘+’ like the Audi e-tron.

Last year, IIHS started testing Tesla’s Model 3 and found that it has a ‘superior rating for front crash prevention’, but the agency only started doing crash tests on the Model 3 this week.

The results are expected to be released soon, but for now, the Audi e-tron becomes IIHS’ highest safety rated electric vehicle.

They wrote about the electric SUV:

“The e-tron performed well in crashworthiness testing, earning good ratings in the driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraint tests.”

Here are the results for those tests:

IIHS also said that the e-tron’s front crash prevention system performed well:

“The SUV’s standard front crash prevention system rates superior in IIHS track tests. It avoided a collision in the 25-mph test and reduced its impact speed by an average of 11 mph in the 12-mph test. Its forward collision warning component meets National Highway Traffic Safety Administration criteria.”

Here’s a video of the crash tests:

The Audi e-tron also acheived a 5-star safety rating under the Euro NCAP standard in Europe.

After launching the e-tron electric SUV last year, Audi had some difficulties bringing the car to production.

They had some software issues that delayed the rollout in Europe and the US. Audi ended up having to recall some e-tron SUVs over a battery pack issue.

Now they are back on track and trying to sell their first electric vehicle built to be electric from the ground up.

Audi is one of the rare automakers heavily investing in advertising their electric vehicles. It had a Superbowl ad about electric vehicles, a new campaign about EV misconceptions, and it even did a few electric vehicle movie product placements.

Last month, we reported on Audi even using Tesla Supercharger stations to advertise the e-tron electric SUV.


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