Mercedes-Benz GLC, GLE Earn IIHS Top Safety Award

mercedes-benz-glc-300-coupe-2024-exterior-oem-13 2024 Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupe | Manufacturer image

Two Mercedes-Benz SUVs have earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s highest honor, with the model-year 2023 and ‘24 GLC and 2024 GLE each being named Top Safety Pick+.

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IIHS tightened the requirements for its most prestigious award for 2023, now requiring good ratings in three different frontal crash tests and a side impact test. The agency grades crash-test performance and headlight function on a scale of poor, marginal, acceptable or good. Active-safety systems are rated on a scale of basic, advanced or superior. To qualify as a Top Safety Pick+, vehicles must also have a front crash prevention system that earns at least an advanced rating in daytime and nighttime pedestrian detection tests, and its standard headlights must rank acceptable or good.

Both awards come with caveats. The GLC’s honors apply to model-year 2023 and ‘24 SUVs built after March 2023, which is when Mercedes made changes on the assembly line to adjust the aim of one of the vehicle’s two available headlight setups. For the GLE, only those fitted with the optional Active Brake Assist with Cross-Traffic Function driver-assist system qualify for the award. The GLE’s standard Active Brake Assist system only earned a basic rating in the nighttime test, though it’s still sufficient to qualify for the agency’s lesser Top Safety Pick award.

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In earning Top Safety Pick+, the GLC and GLE join many of their competitors: The Acura MDX, BMW X3, Genesis GV70 and GV80, Lexus RX and Volvo XC90 all share the spotlight. The Audi Q5 and Lincoln Nautilus qualify as Top Safety Picks.

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