A recent round of crash tests is offering some mixed results for minivan makers in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's latest scores.
The institute focused on passenger-side front crash tests for three 2018-19 minivans: Honda Odyssey, Chrysler Pacifica and Toyota Sienna.
"A vehicle may go off the road, strike a tree, or an object at the side of the road where only a portion of the front of the vehicle actually gets crushed," said IIHS Chief Research Officer David Zuby.
In these "small overlap" tests, the Sienna received a "marginal" rating overall and a "poor" rating for structure.
"In essence, the safety cage around the right front passenger has started to fall apart," Zuby said.
In a written statement, Toyota, in part, called the test a "severe, specialized test that goes beyond federal vehicle safety requirements," but pointed to steps taken "to improve the performance of Toyota vehicles" in the small overlap test.
The Pacifica earned a "marginal" rating for structure with an "acceptable" rating overall for passenger side protection.
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The Odyssey fared best, scoring an "acceptable" rating on structure and a "good" overall.
"We'd ideally like to see all vehicles rating good overall," Zuby said. "But those that rate acceptable don't have too many problems."
The Odyssey and Pacifica each received the top safety pick award for front crash protection overall.
To read more about the safety ratings, go here.