The redesigned 2022 Acura MDX crossover SUV earned a Top Safety Pick+ award from the IIHS for its ability to withstand and avoid a crash with other vehicles and pedestrians, the safety agency announced Tuesday.
Considered the most rigorous safety rating of independent and federal testers, a Top Safety Pick+ indicates the vehicle earned top "Good" scores on all six crash tests. The insurance-industry funded IIHS exceeds the outdated crash testing conducted by the NHTSA and also evaluates driver-assistance systems and the efficacy of headlights.
The seven-seat Acura MDX family hauler also earned "Superior" ratings for its standard automatic emergency braking that avoided or dramatically slowed a crash with vehicles and pedestrians at speeds of 12 mph and 25 mph. The MDX earned the same rating in tests that show a significant speed reduction from 37 mph to avoid striking a pedestrian walking beside the road.
The pedestrian tests have grown in importance as pedestrian fatalities continue to climb despite an overall decrease in traffic fatalities over the past few years. Most automakers include sensors that detect pedestrians as well as vehicles, and more systems can now detect cyclists.
The MDX also has LED projector headlights that earned the top score of "Good." The headlight test has been the biggest TSP+ hurdle for automakers to make since the IIHS toughened the criteria last year on visibility and oncoming glare.
The IIHS also noted that the child-restraint system (LATCH) in the 2022 MDX earned the highest ratings for all five rear seats including the two middle seats.
The 2022 Acura MDX joins the Acura RDX compact crossover, TLX mid-size sedan, and a host of Honda vehicles as 2021 TSP+ winners. Other three-row crossover SUVs to earn a TSP+ include the 2021 Volvo XC90, Cadillac XT6, Ford Explorer, Hyundai Palisade, Mazda CX-9, Subaru Ascent, and Toyota Highlander.
Overall for 2021, 62 models earned a TSP+ award, and 44 earned a TSP, bringing the total number of award winners to 106. Last year, there were 64.