The Highway Loss Data Institute research demonstrates that the vehicles with the highest injury claims tend to be small cars. This is important safety information for consumers, as people are leaning toward purchasing smaller vehicles to save on the cost of gas or to reduce carbon emissions.
The Highway Loss Data Institute looked at insurance data for medical payment (Med-Pay) coverage and Personal Injury Protection (PIP) to determine how well a vehicle protected the occupants from injury during a collision. According to the Highway Loss Data Institute, the majority of the vehicles with the highest claim frequency for the model year 2009-2011 were classified as minicars or small cars.
- Toyota Yaris had the highest rate of personal injury claims: drivers or passengers of the minicar filed injury claims 28.5 times for every 1000 insured vehicles. For comparison, the lowest rate of injury claims was 4.5 per 1000 cars.
- Suzuki SX4, a small crossover, has the second-highest rate of injury claims per 1000 vehicles at 26.6.
- The subcompact Chevy Aveo had 26 injury claims filed for every 1000 cars.
- The Mitsubishi Galant and Kia Rio rounded out the top 5 worst cars for personal injury claims, with 25.4 and 24.9 claims per 1000 insured cars, respectively.
Preventing an accident is the most effective way to avoid injury. Drive defensively, stay within the speed limit, use turn signals, and do not drive while distracted or intoxicated.