The 2019 Volvo XC90 crossover SUV and 2018 Volvo S90 sedan earned the IIHS' top marks, the insurance industry-funded group said last week.
Both vehicles performed well in the IIHS' barrage of crash tests. Neither model was tested in the demanding small-overlap front crash test on the passenger's side, although both earned the top "Good" rating when crashed on the driver's side. The small-overlap test simulates impact with an oncoming car or a stationary object such as a telephone pole.
Headlight performance held both Volvos back from earning the Top Safety Pick+ award. The IIHS said that all versions of the 2019 XC90 delivered "Acceptable" headlight performance. On the 2018 S90, the optional curve-adaptive LED headlights actually performed worse than the standard fixed units. The fixed headlights that come on the S90 Momentum trim level earned an "Acceptable" score, while the curve-adaptive ones optional on the Momentum and standard on the Inscription rated "Marginal."
Available headlights that meet a "Good" rating are required for a car to earn the Top Safety Pick+ award from the IIHS.
Despite the brand's safety-focused heritage, Volvo's lineup has been held back by its headlight performance in the IIHS' latest testing. Since the IIHS added its headlight evaluation, no Volvo has earned a Top Safety Pick+ award.