Recent official tests confirm that size and weight affect injury likelihood in all kinds of auto crashes, and these test results may aid insurersÂ’ risk management efforts. Three front-to-front crash tests from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, each involving a microcar or minicar into a midsize model from the same manufacturer, show how extra vehicle size and weight enhance occupant protection in collisions.

The tests are about the physics of car crashes, which dictate that very small cars generally can't protect people in crashes as well as bigger, heavier models. In a collision involving two vehicles that differ in size and weight, the people in the smaller, lighter vehicle will be at a disadvantage. The bigger, heavier vehicle will push the smaller, lighter one backward during the impact. This means there will be less force on the occupants of the heavier vehicle and more on the people in the lighter vehicle. Greater force means greater risk, so the likelihood of injury goes up in the smaller, lighter vehicle.

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