IIHS: 2022 Volkswagen Taos falters on safety standards

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The 2022 Volkswagen Taos small crossover earned middling results on two key crash tests conducted by the IIHS, the insurance industry-funded safety agency announced Tuesday. The new crossover failed to earn a Top Safety Pick or Top Safety Pick+ award, which are widely considered to be the most rigorous independent safety recognition in the US.

The Taos earned top “Good” ratings on four of the six crash tests conducted by the IIHS, including two front overlap tests, a side impact test, and rollover roof protection. But in the passenger-side small overlap test that simulates the front passenger side of the car hitting a stationary object like a light pole, the IIHS found that there was too much intrusion in the “passenger’s survival space.” The head restraints did not adequately support a dummy’s head and neck in rear-end crash simulations. 

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For the 2022 model year, nearly half of the vehicles tested by the IIHS earned a 2022 Top Safety Pick. Taos rivals such as the 2022 Chevrolet Trailblazer, Ford Bronco Sport, and Subaru Crosstrek got the TSP+ nod. The Buick Encore, Hyundai Venue, Kia Seltos, and Toyota C-HR earned a TSP from the IIHS.   

Unlike many competitors, the Taos does not come standard with automatic emergency braking. On its optional system, the Taos earned a “Superior” rating in detecting and avoiding crashes with other vehicles, but it earned a subpar “Basic” rating for detecting pedestrians. With the exception of the LED projector headlights on the top SEL trim, the other models were rated at “Marginal” for weak visibility. 

The NHTSA has yet to crash test the Taos, though it has overseen three recalls since the model went on sale last summer. 

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