2011 Maserati Quattroporte GT S Awards EditionEnlarge Photo
6) Shopping for a luxury vehicle or sports car? It probably hasn't been rated.
The federal government plans to test just 55 models this year, out of hundreds on the market. And it emphasizes those that sell in high numbers. What does that mean? You're certainly not going to see crash-test results for low-volume vehicles like the Mercedes-Benz CL-Class, the Maserati Quattroporte, or the Mazda RX-8.
"We test the most popular model vehicles," said Ron Medford, NHTSA deputy administrator, in a video about the new system. "We estimate that about 80 percent of the market is commonly tested with our program."