MINI Rated Safest in Class

According to a study released by the Insurance industry this week on the death rate of automobiles, MINI captured the best score in it’s class.

The highest and lowest rates were both recorded by Chevrolet. The highest being the Chevy Blazer, lowest being the Chevy Astro Van. Honda’s two-door Acura RSX had the second-highest rate with 202 driver deaths, followed by the Nissan 350Z, which registered 193 deaths. We’ll leave it up to you to figure out what this says both about the car’s and their typical drivers.

The study also reaffirmed past research, which found that heavier vehicles generally had lower death rates. Data came from the federal government’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System and registration counts from the Polk Co., a Michigan provider of automotive information.

MINI scored 68 deaths per million. While not the greatest numbers, it still puts MINI about in the middle of the pack when it comes to driver deaths.

[ Chevrolet Blazer worst in driver deaths ] MSN Money
  • http://www.atlantaminis.net M. Dillon

    …being a Trucker(who has seen one too many wrecks in my career);plus,the story above,is one of the many reasons why I have picked a MINI Cooper as my main mode of transportation…

    …a safe,well-made car,that doesn’t send most people to the,”poor house”…

    …keep up the good work,Gabe and Co.

  • James

    “[D]eath rate of automobiles”? I expect my MINI to live forever!

  • ejkd

    When I pre-order my 2007 MCS I double check as well it’s insurance cost (AllState)and I was suprised it’s much lower than my 2005 WRX whom I replacing.

  • Drew

    ejkd — I agree totally. I ordered my 2007 Mini Cooper S (coming in 3 weeeeeks!!!) … and the estimate on car insurance (State Farm) was much, much less than i expected.

    Also, this is very good to know, considering a lot of people are giving me flack about Mini not being ‘safe’

  • MINI Fireman

    IMO, the average car buyer in the USA buys into the myth that for a car to be “safe” it has to be huge. Besides the MINI being a remarkable vehicle for its size, it’s ability to AVOID an accident makes it safer that most on the road.

  • http://hpudrew.gomotoring.com HPUdrew

    Although I usually fully support safety tests, I find this one to be irrelevant for a couple of reasons. First off, the Chevy Astro van has been shown time and time again to be one of the most unsafe vehicles on the road, with many tests showing extreme injuries from only minor accidents. The other, more obvious reason is this:

    Very large four-door cars
    Ford Crown Victoria 2003-04 45 Mercury Grand Marquis 2003-04 75

    These are the same cars, with the same safety equipment, and built in the same factory. For the Mercury to have 30 more deaths per million shows just how badly skewed these figures might be.

    Drew

  • Drill

    I wonder how many deaths those big heavy vehicles have CAUSED :-(

  • matt

    The 350Z and the G35 being on completely opposite sides of the study is also pretty revealing about how useless this data is. It’s the same car, with the 350Z having only a 5 inch shorter length.

    Had they weighted the data for the demographics that drive the cars, it might be slightly more useful.

    Also, if I’m reading the index correctly, that’s vehicle deaths per million cars. There aren’t even a million MINIs registered in the US, which means there haven’t even been 68 deaths attributed to MINIs. Certainly it’s hard to compare a vehicle like the crown victoria or honda civic to the MINI because of how many of their vehicles have been produced. But having to extrapolate the data so that the statistic shows more deaths than have even actually occured seems very skewed to me.

    Couple that with the lack of correction for variables and this data is basically useless.

    The most disturbing thing about this article is the line about heavier vehicles being safe. If a demographic filter was put on this data, I guarantee that we’d find that the safest demographics also drive the heavier cars statistically because the majority of safety minded drivers don’t know that body stiffness is the real measure of safety. So they instead purchase big, heavy cars and trucks and skew the data toward heavier vehicles.

  • Phantom

    The Chevy Astro van is one of the oldest GM products in the market today. It dates all the way back to 1985. That partly explains why that vehicle outs out such poor crash test results. It is a design from another era.

  • Nathaniel Salzman
    These are the same cars, with the same safety equipment, and built in the same factory. For the Mercury to have 30 more deaths per million shows just how badly skewed these figures might be.

    I don’t think that’s indicative of the numbers being scewed or inaccurate, but rather a good case for the argument that it’s not the cars themselves but rather the average drivers of these particular makes and models that are noteworthy. It should read more like “The driver of a 350Z is more likely to get himself killed than the driver of a G35.” Of course that’s what DB said already:

    We’ll leave it up to you to figure out what this says both about the cars and their typical drivers.

    It’s interesting more from a sociological standpoint than from an engineering or car safety point of view. It’s recreational data at best, I think, but that doesn’t make it inaccurate.

    Also, if I’m reading the index correctly, that’s vehicle deaths per million cars. There aren’t even a million MINIs registered in the US, which means there haven’t even been 68 deaths attributed to MINIs. Certainly it’s hard to compare a vehicle like the crown victoria or honda civic to the MINI because of how many of their vehicles have been produced. But having to extrapolate the data so that the statistic shows more deaths than have even actually occured seems very skewed to me.

    Interesting, but it doesn’t make the number irrelevant or inaccurate. That’s just how they chose to break down the fraction. It’s easier to wrap your head around 65 of every 1,000,000 cars than to compare 0.0065% to 0.0202%. So whether or not there are actually a million cars doesn’t really matter. It’s the proportion that’s interesting. Not particularly useful, but interesting.

    Either way, the MINI is at the top of its category so what are we complaining about?

  • karlInSanDiego

    I’m siding with it being as much serendipity as true statistic. Perhaps fatalities per accident above 30 mph would make more sense? The two Sequoia rankings are what struck me. 4wd vs. 2wd. Double the fatalies? Sometime it’s not the car or the demo, it’s random luck.

    I get why insurance companies use this type of data. But just as profiling by age, gender, and location are useful to them, it’s not a reason for consumers to presume that their age, gender or location has destined them to be more prone to an accident. Defensive and safe driving techniques will easily help most drivers cheat the numbers. Statistics are a bad indicator of the proper solution to resolving fatalities. It’s hindsight that ends up becoming self-fulfilling prophecy.