New crash tests show bigger is not always better when it comes to the safety of midsize SUVs.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety put seven midsize sport utility vehicles through small overlap crash tests and rated four as either "poor" or "marginal".
"It is a little disappointing," said Dave Zuby, chief research officer for the IIHS. "You would like to see more good and acceptable performers in these small overlap crash tests."
The Jeep Cherokee, Dodge Durango, and Hyundai Santa Fe were rated as "marginal" following the crash tests.
Meanwhile, the IIHS gave the lowest rating possible, "poor" to the Dodge Journey. By comparison, the four-door Jeep Wrangler and Nissan Murano received a rating of "good" from the IIHS. The Ford Flex had an "acceptable" performance, according to the Insurance Institute.
"What we are seeing for Dodge/Chrysler brands is that when they are bringing out new designs they are performing pretty well in our test," Zuby said. "These older designs that have been around for a few years aren't offering the highest level of safety in this type of crash."