Source: IIHS and NHTSA
With top crash test ratings, electronic stability control for added security and an inherently stable design, the Legacy comes out on top.
This year, when the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named its "Top Safety Picks," it required that the vehicles have electronic stability control.
Analysis of actual crash statistics by the Insurance Institute and the government's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has shown that stability control, in both cars and SUVs, significantly reduces dangerous single-vehicle wrecks. Auto safety advocates are calling it the most significant safety advance since seatbelts.
But ESC can't do everything, so it's still better to have an inherently stable vehicle along with ESC to prevent loss of control.
All the vehicles in the IIHS "Top Picks" list got, as required for the award, top ratings in the Institute's own side, front and rear impact tests. Except for the Saab 9-3 and Audi A6, all also received top scores in NHTSA's crash tests. (The A6 and 9-3 were not tested by NHTSA.) But the Legacy also scored highest in NHTSA's vehicle stability ratings.