SUV Accidents Can Be Costly For Other Passenger Vehicles

According to new data from the insurance industry even a minor fender-bender in a sport utility vehicle can lead to expensive repairs.  Government requires all cars to have bumpers that protect an area 16 to 20 inches from the ground. The bumper rules do not apply to SUVs, pickup trucks or minivans, making SUV bumpers a few inches higher than those on cars.

In crash scenarios involving passenger sedans and SUVs the damage to the smaller cars were far greater than the damage sustained by the SUVs.  Most SUVs ride higher off the ground than normal passenger vehicles, so cars can sustain damage to hoods, headlights, engine cooling systems and fenders in low-speed crashes with SUVs.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety estimates that repairing damages to SUVs - and passenger cars involved in low-speed crashes with SUVs - could cost from about $3,000 for two vehicles to nearly $10,000. The tests were conducted at 10 miles per hour and meant to simulate crashes in bumper-to-bumper traffic involving pairs of small cars and small SUVs from the same automaker.

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