The 2014 Honda Odyssey minivan received this week the highest rating in a new strict crash test conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
With the rating of "good" in the called small overlap crash test, the Odyssey became the only minivan on earning the Top Safety Pick and other honors from the IIHS.
The IIHS rocked the industry last year when it started testing vehicles that are able to withstand a crash similar to those that occur when the left front corner of a vehicle hits an object, like an oncoming car, a tree or a pole.
The rating is the payment of a significant investment made by Honda. The automaker refreshed the Odyssey from now for 2014, with a reinforced steel frame and stronger airbags, instead of waiting until the next redesign in a few years.
In this video the IIHS shows at small overlap crash test of the Honda Odyssey 2014 at 40 MPH.
"The Honda's commitment to safety is demonstrated by the fact that we have achieved this high standard in the middle of the update cycle," said Art St. Cyr, vice president of product planning and logistics for American Honda Motor Co.
Honda now leads all automakers with six models ready to receive the Top Safety Pick. The others are the 2013 Civic sedan and coupe, the 2013 Accord sedan and coupe, and the 2013 Acura TL.
Honda continues to evolve
Honda, meanwhile, is working on two other safety-related initiatives. One is aimed at reducing accidents that involve motorcycle drivers and the other could help to prevent pedestrian accidents.
In Detroit, Honda engineers have conducted demonstrations of a driver warning system that uses radio call signs and Dedicated Short Range Communications or DSRC.
This video demonstrate how the DSRC system has potential to significantly reduce accidents at railway level crossings for example.
A vehicle with DSRC detects when a pedestrian carrying a smart-phone enabled for DSRC is about to enter the road. The driver and the pedestrian received two warnings when they get too close to each other, a loud sound and a visual alert through the screen in the vehicle and the smart-phone screen.
The DSRC system designed to alert drivers of motorcycles when another one is near, works even if it is out of their sight.
The DSRC system is not automatically applied to the brakes or steering wheel of the vehicle to change its direction, it is only an audible and visual warning.