<p><em>Photo of Volkswagen Atlas courtesy of Volkswagen.</em></p>

VIDEO: 2018 Volkswagen Atlas Crash Tests

The 2018 Volkswagen Atlas, a new mid-size SUV, has earned the Top Safety Pick award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the institute said.

To qualify for the 2017 IIHS Top Safety Pick award, a vehicle must draw the highest possible rating of “good” in all five crashworthiness tests. The tests assess small overlap front, moderate overlap front, and side crashworthiness. Also evaluated are roof strength and head restraints.

(To see video footage of the small overlap front crash test, click on the photo or link below the headline.)

Additionally, an IIHS Top Safety Pick award-winning vehicle must have an available front crash prevention system that draws a rating of “advanced” or “superior.”

The Atlas has an optional front crash prevention system that earned a “superior” rating, IIHS said. In the 12 mph track test, the vehicle avoided a collision. In the 25 mph test, the impact speed was reduced by 17 mph. The system also has a forward collision-warning component that meets criteria from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The Atlas fell short of the Top Safety Pick+ designation, however, because the vehicle’s available headlights drew ratings of “marginal” and “poor,” IIHS said. “Good”- or “acceptable”-rated headlights are required for the more prestigious Top Safety Pick+ award.

Originally posted on Automotive Fleet