2012 Chevrolet Sonic. Photo by Joe NuxollEnlarge Photo
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has just named the all-new 2012 Chevrolet Sonic small sedan and hatchback a Top Safety Pick.
2012 Chevrolet SonicEnlarge Photo
The Sonic, which replaces the outgoing Chevy Aveo, won the top ratings across the board in the Institute’s safety evaluations, which include front, side, rollover and rear crash tests.
In the Institute’s evaluation of roof strength, the Sonic withstood a force equal to 5.37 times the car’s weight. The roof strength test evaluates how well a vehicle’s occupant compartment holds up in a rollover crash. Vehicles with a strength-to-weight ratio of 4 or higher earn a “good” rating.
StabiliTrak electronic stability control (ESC) is standard equipment on the Sonic. ESC was previously a requirement to earn IIHS Top Safety Pick status. As of September 1, 2011, ESC is required by federal regulation to be standard equipment on all new passenger vehicles.
In addition to ESC, the Sonic has 10 standard airbags, which includes driver and front passenger knee airbags to help reduce lower extremity injuries. Also standard is hill-hold technology which helps prevent rolling backwards when starting on steep inclines.
Because of the structural similarity between the Sonic sedan and hatchback versions, the hatchback also received Top Safety Pick status.
In addition to the Sonic, five other Chevrolet vehicles have Top Safety Pick status. The Chevrolet Volt and Cruze recently earned Top Safety Pick, joining the Malibu mid-size sedan and Equinox and Traverse crossover SUVs.