automakers like to one-up each other inads on who builds the toughest large pickup trucks, so the institute decidedto take a look at the safety of this vehicle class. we conducted tests toevaluate the protection to occupants in rear impact, rollover, side and frontal crashes. so the results are a mixed bag.the ford f-150 is the only vehicle to receive agood rating in the small overlap test, and furthermore it's the only oneto receive a top safety pick award. three of the other trucksreceived acceptable ratings, and five of the trucksonly received a marginal rating.
we evaluated two body styles for each ofthese pickup trucks -- the extended cab and the larger crew cab, which hasfour doors and a full-size rear seat -- because early testing on the2015 ford f-150 showed structural countermeasure differencesbetween the crew cab and the extended cab. the crew cab received a good rating, whereas the extended cab onlyreceived a marginal rating. ford improved the extended cab for 2016, and it now earns a good rating for the small overlap frontal crash along with the crew cab version of the vehicle. the ford f-150is the only large pickup truck to get this good rating,
and when equipped with optional forwardcollision warning system it is also a top safety pick. for two of the models we did see differencesbetween the crew cab and extended cab versions. the silverado 1500 and tundra crew cabmodels performed worse than the extended cab. the extended cab received acceptable ratings, whereas the crew cab versionsonly receive marginal ratings. the worst-performing truck we tested wasthe ram 1500, with both cab versions receiving poor structural ratings andmarginal overall ratings. there was so much structural collapsethat the footwell, brake pedal and lower instrument panel pushed into the dummy'slegs. there was likelihood of serious
injury to the lower legs, ankleand feet in the dummies. in a real-world small overlap crash, drivers in a silverado, ram or tundrawould need help freeing their legs from the wreckage. the injuries they sustainedcould require months of rehabilitation. pickup trucks are advertisedto be these rough and tough vehicles, but the results show that somemanufacturers have a long way to go to match the good across-the-board safetyperformance of the ford f-150.