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Is Buick’s safety rating for large SUVs better than Chevy’s?

Things to remember...

  • The Buick Enclave and the Chevrolet Traverse shared similar safety review results in all areas rated by the IIHS for 2017
  • The IIHS reviews multiple vehicles in each vehicle class in a total of eight safety category
  • Safety ratings are one of several vehicle-related factors that could affect the cost of your auto insurance throughout your entire ownership period

Large SUVs are increasingly popular for use as family vehicles as well as for commuters and others. Many people love driving around town in a larger vehicle because they feel safer and more confident.

However, size is not the only factor that can influence your overall safety and well-being on the road.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety / Highway Data Loss Institute has analyzed five popular large SUV models for 2017, and it has rated each model for overall safety.

The primary goal of the IIHS is to help drivers be safer on the road and to help automobile manufacturers identify safety areas that they need to improve in.

Some drivers may erroneously believe that today’s modern vehicles are relatively similar in terms of the level of safety that they can provide on the road.

Analyzing the safety ratings for the two models that you are most interested in today can help you to determine if you should buy the Chevrolet Traverse or the Buick Enclave.

Keep in mind that while the Traverse and Enclave share the same safety ratings from the IIHS, other models have substantially different ratings in many of the categories reviewed.

Compare car insurance quotes to find the best rate for the coverage you need no matter which vehicle you drive. Enter your zip code above to get started.

Table of Contents

A Comparison of IIHS Safety Ratings between the Chevy and Buick Large SUVs

The Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave have undeniable appeal for many buyers, but they are just a few of the many large SUVs in this class.

Notably, neither of these two SUV models received the honor of being named the IIHS 2017 Top Safety Pick. 

All of the SUVs analyzed for this year’s safety review were graded in three main safety areas and eight sub-groups. The grades doled outspan from “basic” to “superior” for one sub-group and from “poor” to “good” for all others.


The Crashworthiness section is the largest group rated by the IIHS, and it features five smaller safety sub-sections that describe the ability of the vehicle to keep its passengers protected in the event of a vehicular accident.

These five categories include:

  • Front Medium Overlap
  • Front Small Overlap
  • Head Restraints and Seats
  • Side
  • Roof Strength

While the Buick and Chevy vehicles were not rated in the Front Small Overlap category this year, they both received “good” grades for the other sub-sections in the Crashworthiness category.

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Crash Avoidance and Mitigation

Crash Avoidance and Mitigation is another important safety category reviewed by IIHS, and it tells you how well a vehicle could potentially prevent an accident or minimize how severe it may be.

There are two sub-groups in this category, and these are Headlights and Front Crash Prevention. Neither of these two vehicles was graded for the Headlight section, and they both received a “basic” grade for Front Crash Prevention.

LATCH for Child Seat Anchors

Many SUV drivers transport young children in the vehicle, and the LATCH category examines the ease associated with securing child safety seats to the anchors.

These two vehicles earned an “average” grade in the LATCH category. Only one SUV reviewed this year ranked higher in this category.

2017 Top Safety Pick and/or 2017 Top Safety Pick+

The IIHS awards the safest vehicles in each class with the Top Safety Pick award. The Buick Enclave and Chevrolet Traverse both fell short of receiving this honor for the large SUV vehicle class in 2017.

These two notable honors offered by the IIHS are granted to vehicles that have high safety ratings for the five sub-categories in Crashworthiness as well as in a few other important safety areas.

Determining If Buick Is Safer Than Chevrolet in 2017

Safety is understandably a critical factor to consider when buying a new vehicle, but other factors may play into your decision-making process as well.

Both the Buick large SUV model and the Chevy model have exactly the same safety ratings for 2017 in all eight categories, and these are the only two large SUV models analyzed by the IIHS this year.

Therefore, you must analyze other factors to make an intelligent SUV buying decision, and this may include comparing the fuel economy, cost and value, interior features, passenger seating, and more to form a well-rounded view of the different models on the market today.

Buying a new large SUV to use as a commuter vehicle, a family vehicle, or something else is often challenging for many automotive buyers. There are many stylish and well-equipped SUV models on the market today that you can choose from.

Because safety ratings vary considerably between some models of large SUVs and because safety ratings can affect your insurance premium cost, a closer look at all safety ratings for each vehicle in this popular class may be in order.

It can also be helpful to compare auto insurance rates online for the top models that you are seriously thinking about buying. Enter your zip code below to begin comparing quotes for free today.


  1. http://www.iihs.org/iihs/about-us
  2. http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings/v/class-summary/large-suvs
  3. http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings/v/class-summary/large-suvs#crashTypes
  4. http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings/ratings-info/frontal-crash-tests
  5. http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings/ratings-info/front-crash-prevention-tests
  6. http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings/ratings-info/LATCH-evaluation

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