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New Auto Safety Report Finds SUVs Safer Than Small Cars

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LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Drivers of newer SUV models are more likely to survive a crash, according to a new report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The report out Thursday found that SUVs, model years 2005 to 2008, have about half the crash fatality rates as smaller vehicles.

Driver death rates were found to be the lowest in the Ford Edge, Nissan Armada, Land Rover Range Rover Sport and the Land Rover LR-3.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety credits required installation of electronic stability control systems in newer SUV’s.

“We think that electronic stability control is certainly a primary factor. Many SUV’s have also been redesigned to make them less likely to be tippy,” said researcher Anne McCartt of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The Institute’s report also found that drivers of smaller cars, like the Nissan 350-Z two door and the Chevy Aveo and Cobalt, have the highest death rates.

Among all the vehicles tested, minivans had the lowest driver fatality rate, according to the report.

For a complete list of the ratings, visit the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety online.

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