IIHS names 2011 Hyundai Equus as ‘Top Safety Pick’

Article by Christian Andrei, on April 17, 2011

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has named Hyundai’s Equus full-size flagship luxury sedan as a Top Safety Pick for 2011. The Equus’ pricier rivals have not been given the Top Safety Pick rating but that’s only because the IIHS has yet to conduct full tests on these luxury cars. To earn this reward, a vehicle needs to have a good rating for front, side, rollover, and rear crash protection. It also has to have electronic stability control.

It’s a known fact that tests on high-end luxury cars aren’t as frequent as other vehicles. The IIHS has given the current-generation Lexus LS a good rating in the front crash test but it has yet to be tested in the three other categories. To date, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not yet tested the Equus.

Similar to other models in its class, the Equus features a pre-collision warning system. Its nine airbags are fitted as standard and one option that’s offered is a lane departure warning system.

The 2012 Equus model won’t be getting significant changes in safety or other aspects. However, the major difference is that the Equus will have the 429hp 5.0-liter V-8 engine (which powers the 2012 Genesis sedan) as standard.

Hyundai Equus takes pride in its world-class safety features, to help avoid accidents (active) and give maximum protection to passengers during a collision (passive) -- keeping the brand’s emphasis on supplying top safety technology. The Equus carries on the Hyundai tradition of presenting major safety technologies, including features like Electronic Stability Control (ESC), smart cruise control, lane departure warning system, electronic active head restraints and nine airbags.

It is also incorporated with a Vehicle Stability Management system (VSM), which ideally handles ESC, smart cruise control, the seatbelt tensioning system and electronic parking brake for the ultimate in safety.

The Equus has nine airbags with advanced dual front airbags, side-impact airbags mounted on the front and rear seats, side curtain airbags mounted on the roof for front and rear outboard seat passengers and a knee airbag for the driver.

The brand’s lane departure warning system gives a warning light and chime following a split-second lane departure and a haptic warning through the seatbelt following a 3-second lane departure. Smart cruise controls the speed automatically by means of braking and throttle systems to keep a specific following distance chosen by the driver.

The electronic parking brake plus automatic vehicle hold lets the parking brake automatically hold the vehicle as the vehicle stops and disengages the moment the gas pedal is pushed.

Hyundai Equus comes with an optional camera placed on the front grille as well as a standard camera on the decklid at the rear. Both cameras can detect the proximity of objects when parking. The in-dash LCD monitor indicates the distance.

Huge 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes incorporated with Brake Assist plus Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) are capable of bringing the Equus to a stop. The 13.6-inch front rotors feature fixed calipers with four pistons while the rear brakes have 12.4-inch rotors with floating single piston calipers.

Press Release


The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has awarded the 2011 Hyundai Equus a “TOP SAFETY PICK”— achieving the highest rating of “Good” in all crash test categories including front, side, rollover and rear crash protection. Additionally, in order to be considered for an IIHS “TOP SAFETY PICK,” a vehicle must also feature Electronic Stability Control (ESC).

Equus also passed the Institute's roof strength test for rollover protection, withstanding a force equal to 4.87 times the car's weight. Vehicles with a strength-to-weight ratio of four or higher earn a “Good” rating in the Institute's test. By comparison, the current federal standard is 1.5 times weight.

“The award from IIHS means the Equus affords buyers state-of-the-art safety for protection in most crash situations,” said Mike O’Brien, vice president, Product and Corporate Planning, Hyundai Motor America. “This recognition confirms that the Equus truly is a desirable luxury vehicle with quality engineering and world-class safety features.”

As the company’s flagship rear-wheel-drive sedan, Equus features Hyundai’s newest safety innovation, the Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) system. VMS governs ESC, the electronic parking brake, smart cruise control, the collision warning sensor and the seatbelt tensioning system for optimal safety. The seatbelt tensioning system in the Equus works through sensors, which detect critical driving situations and retract the seatbelts accordingly to prevent passenger movement. The Equus’ dynamic safety package is further enhanced by the Lane Departure Warning System and driver’s knee airbags.

Other safety features include nine standard airbags (advanced dual front airbags, front and rear seat-mounted side-impact airbags, driver knee airbag, and roof-mounted side-curtain airbags), electronic active front head restraints with power controls, electronic seatbelt pretensioners and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).

Hyundai’s award-winning Tau 4.6-liter provides the power that keeps Equus safe at speed. Later this year, Equus gets a boost to 429 horsepower with the introduction of the all-new 5.0-liter Tau.

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