The 2016 Volvo S80 for sale is an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ for this year, and with good reason. It’s got a host of great safety technology that we’ve come to expect and love from Volvo, leaving most of the other competition in the dust when it comes to safety. Actually, the S80 has been landing a Top Safety Pick category since 2007, which means it has nine years of stomping on the competition under its belt. Unsurprising for a Volvo, to be honest. After all, safety is kind of its thing. After all, Volvo did invent the seat belt.
But, I digress. Let’s get back on track and take a look at what being an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ vehicle entails, and then take a look at some of the notable safety features on the S80. After that, we’ll take a look at some of the safety ratings from its competitors, and see how they fare against a vehicle that is considered almost perfect when it comes to safety.
IIHS Top Safety Pick+
In order for a vehicle to qualify for an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ in 2016, it must earn ratings of good in all five crashworthiness categories: small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength, head restraints & seats, along with an advanced or superior rating for front crash prevention in the crash avoidance & mitigation category. Obviously, the S80 was able to land a top rating of “Good” in all five categories, even earning a “Superior” rating in front crash prevention. That “Superior” rating is attained following the inclusion of certain safety technologies on board, like the optional Collision Warning with Full Auto Brake and Pedestrian Detection. The standard safety system on board is City Safety, and we’ll go over that a little later.
Since front crash prevention is still a relatively new category in the IIHS crash safety tests, I’ll explain it a little further. It’s a possible best of six points, divided into three sections: forward collision warning, low-speed auto brake, and high-speed auto brake. The forward collision warning is simply the S80’s ability to detect the potential impact from a forward-facing collision. The S80 met the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) criteria for this category, receiving one point.
The low-speed auto brake is a category that involves how well a vehicle can avoid or mitigate the damage in a collision. The safety system installed on the S80 was able to completely avoid a collision during the 12 mpg test, and therefore got a rating of two points. The high-speed auto brake is a similar test, and during a 25 mph test, the impact speed was reduced by 13 mph, which is considered good, and therefore got a rating of two points. Total, this gives the 2016 Volvo S80 a “Superior” rating with a total of five out of six points.
Now that we’ve gone over what it takes to qualify for an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ in 2016, let’s take a look at some of the notable safety features found on the Volvo S80.
Notable Safety Features
The S80 is a sedan that has a host of intelligent safety features on board, and it would take up your entire computer screen if I went through each individual one. So instead, I’m going to go over a few of the more impressive and unique safety features found on the S80.
City Safety was mentioned earlier and is one of the reasons the S80 was able to score a superior rating in the front crash prevention category. Think of the City Safety system as a co-pilot that is constantly vigilant, detecting any dangers ahead. This system can detect cars, cyclists, pedestrians, or anything else that might get in front of the vehicle. If City Safety determines that a collision is imminent, it will brake automatically, which makes a collision less likely, or reduces the impact damage.
It’s much more intelligent than you might think, too. It can detect any split second issues that might pop up, like if a cyclist swerves in front of the car, or if you start to turn into the path of an oncoming vehicle. In either case, it can automatically apply the brakes last minute if you don’t respond fast enough.
Adaptive Cruise Control
Ever get tired while driving and need a break? Or maybe bust out some dance moves because your favorite song just popped on the radio? Now you can do both. While it isn’t completely autonomous, the S80, equipped with IntelliSafe, features Adaptive Cruise Control and Pilot Assist technology actually allows the car to drive itself up to speeds of 30 mph.
How? Because the S80’s cruise control is highly intelligent, and can actually detect the vehicle in front of it, as well as the lane-lines on either side of you. It’s able to maintain a safe distance between the vehicle in front of you by speeding up and slowing down when the vehicle in front does. Pilot Assist detects the lane you are in, and can keep you in line with gentle steering inputs. That way, you can truly let the S80 take the wheel.
Now, keep in mind that you still need to pay attention and take over if an emergency happens. The system can’t perform emergency braking, and if the vehicle stops suddenly, you might need to manually perform more advanced evasive maneuvers.
How the Competition Fares
With intelligent safety like this, combined with an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating, the 2016 Volvo S80 is hard to beat when it comes to safety. The 2016 BMW 5-Series is in the same league as the S80, but is unable to achieve an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating because it received a “Marginal” score in the small overlap front test — which is the second lowest possible score in a category. The Cadillac CTS is in the same boat, receiving a “Marginal” score in the small overlap front category.
I could keep going, but the point is there are very few other luxury sedans that even come close to the safety rating of the 2016 Volvo S80. Nor is there an abundance of automakers out there with technology as intelligent as Volvo’s suite of IntelliSafe features.