The latest round of crash tests involving two of the country's most popular electric cars shows the batteries in those vehicles hold up with no major issues after violent front end collisions.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crashed a Chevy Volt and Nissan LEAF as part of the latest round of tests involving small cars.
"We measure thermo and electrical properties of the battery," said Joe Nolan with the Insurance Institute. "We look at its integrity in the vehicle and in neither case for these crash tests or in any of the crash tests we've conducted of the Leaf or the Volt did we see a problem with the batteries."
In all, IIHS has now conducted five different crash tests with the LEAF and Volt. After each test (front, side-impact, rear-impact, roof strength and small overlap) the integrity of the batteries was not compromised.
Occupant Safety Mixed Reviews
The LEAF and Volt crash tests resulted in mixed reviews for how the two models protect occupants.
Chevy's Volt, an extended-range electric car, was given a rating of "acceptable" by IIHS while the LEAF was rated as "poor."
"It (the LEAF) has a major collapse of the occupant department and that lead to all sorts of problems in other areas of occupant protection," said Nola.
The IIHS small overlap test replicates a collision where the front corner of the driver's side of the car hits another car or object at 40 mph. It is among the most common and deadliest vehicle crashes.