EV Vehicles

Rivian R1S joins R1T as IIHS Top Safety Pick+ – watch it crash

Rivian has just announced that its 2023 model year R1S SUV has been awarded Top Safety Pick+ status from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). The all-electric SUV joins Rivian’s R1T pickup in obtaining the safety organization’s top honor.

Rivian ($RIVN) is now a couple of years removed from beginning production of its flagship EVs, but remains relatively nascent in a booming segment, especially in the SUV-loving US. The company is still trying to find its footing in scaled EV production and has taken its fair share of lumps along the way.

To date, Rivian’s vehicles have faced five safety recalls, the most recent coming in February, involving the passenger air bags of both the R1T and R1S. Still, current Rivian owners are the most satisfied customers in the premium EV segment, according to JD Power. The automaker recently dethroned the 2022 leader, Tesla.

While there are plenty of bells and whistles (and hidden flashlights) to relish in the Rivian R1T or R1S, safety remains a huge selling point for consumers, especially those with families. Last December, Rivian reported that its R1T pickup had been awarded as an IIHS Top Safety Pick+, just one of three pickups to earn the honor to date.

Today, the R1S joins Rivian’s other EV as yet another Top Safety Pick+, alongside video evidence of its crash strength shared below.

Rivian R1S safety
Credit: Rivian/YouTube

Watch the Rivian R1S endure IIHS crash safety testing

Per Rivian, all R1S models built after January 2023 carry the Top Safety Pick+ award from the nonprofit organization. The IIHS explained that this year’s criteria to receive top tier award status was tougher than ever:

The requirements are tougher for both the lower-tier Top Safety Pick and higher-tier Top Safety Pick+ award in 2023. Acceptable or good headlights are now required across all trims for either award, rather than only for the higher accolade. In addition, the updated side test, in which a heavier striking barrier hits the test vehicle at a higher speed, replaces the original side evaluation. Vehicles must earn an acceptable or good rating to qualify for Top Safety Pick. A good rating is required for the ‘plus.’

Rivian shared that the 2023 R1S not only earned the Top Safety Pick+ award but is also currently the only 2023 model in the large SUV category to earn the badge so far. Both Rivian’s flagship EVs now hold the top IIHS status for 2023 as the automaker looks to bolster sales and increase profits. Rivian vice president of chassis attributes and safety engineering Malin Ekholm spoke to the award:

The R1 line of vehicles was designed to be among the safest on the road today through clean-sheet structural design, optimized materials, and fully integrated software. We are delighted to see R1S join the R1T in receiving the Top Safety Pick+ award and will continue to make safety a key priority for our customers as they take on their next adventure.

As always, the IIHS posted crash test safety footage of the R1S today, which you can view below.

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News Source: electrek.co

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