Two vehicles made by South Korean car company Hyundai are the most deadly for drivers, based on data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and Highway Loss Data Institute, whose report includes statistics on the economic recovery and highway death rates. The vehicles cited are the Hyundai Accent and Kia Rio, both made by Hyundai.
A summary of the research:
The risk of dying in a crash in a late-model vehicle has gone up slightly, as a stronger economy has put more drivers on the road more often and in more dangerous ways. Meanwhile, a new study predicts traffic deaths will fall only slightly over the coming years, given current expectations for the economy.
The driver death rates are based on data from 2012 to 2015. The study pointed out:
The increase in the overall driver death rate for 2014 models is likely connected to the increased number of fatalities toward the end of that period.
The safest cars, based on the research, had no deaths over the period included vehicles from Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz.
The most dangerous, which all had over 70 deaths per “Overall driver deaths per million registered vehicle years,” included the Hyundai Accent (104) and Kia Rio (102). The Accent is popular among motorists because it is inexpensive and has a roomy interior.
The study’s conclusion:
As in the past, the driver death rates show that the smallest vehicles are the most dangerous ones. Among the 10 vehicles with the highest rates, five are minicars and three are small cars. These vehicles don’t protect occupants as well as larger ones, so their presence at the top of the “worst” list isn’t surprising.
The IIHS study added that “riskier, discretionary driving — for example, going out to dinner or traveling for vacation — is affected by economic fluctuations even more than day-to-day commuting. Economic conditions also affect how fast people drive.”
The jobs boom has a downside, and one that is increasingly perilous.