Is Honda’s safety rating for large trucks better than Nissan’s?

Honda's large truck received top safety ratings, while Nissan's large truck scored low in comparison. Safety features can reduce your car insurance rates by up to 8%.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Jan 26, 2021

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Here's what you need to know...

  • Pickup trucks can be labeled as one of the most powerful vehicles on the market.
  • Getting educated on safety can be done in countless ways such as obtaining reviews from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)
  • Looking at 2017 Honda Ridgeline’s safety, it appears to have outperformed Nissan 2017 Titan model in many ways

Pickup trucks originally started as large vehicles for work like heavy lifting, transporting large items, and towing.

Since the 1950s, however, the environment started moving away from the work-related uses for a pickup truck, and by the end of the 20th century, very few owners purchased these metal giants for work.

Nowadays, they are more frequently used by common households who just yearn for a more powerful level of transportation.

Despite their presence among everyday drivers, pickups remain one of the most convenient options for farmers, construction workers, and similar types of independent contractors to handle their day-to-day business.

Compare car insurance quotes for Hondas and Nissans and find the best rates. Enter your zip code above to get started.

Safety of Large Pickup Trucks

New drivers of pickup trucks might be unaware of the incredible power these vehicles are built with, consequently facilitating danger while driving. This happens during off-roading, poor weather conditions, or simply by driving on narrow roads.

A lot of the new drivers have not had a chance to learn that a multi-ton vehicle is difficult to bring to a complete stop, takes great effort to control when sharp-turning, and might be dangerous to park just anywhere.

These situations are where safety measures installed by the manufacturers come in.

Creating tools such as accident prevention, life-saving airbags, and motion sensors can help those less skilled.

To purchase an appropriate truck, one can utilize the IIHS safety tests. These assessments are performed through real-life conditions that give insight into front and side crashes, roof tests, airbag efficiency, and more.

Basically, the car will be hit from all directions that the IIHS deems necessary to obtain credible scoring for their performance. After getting the results, they will be given a rating in three areas discussed below.

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Honda Ridgeline Versus Nissan Titan

Although great pickup trucks are produced by Honda, this conglomerate does a lot more. They also specialize in aircraft and power equipment products, and they are the largest manufacturer of motorcycles in the world.

Nissan, however, only specializes in auto manufacturing, and they currently have more than $200 billion in revenues annually.

To facilitate an appropriate comparison between these two brands’ safety, 2017 Honda Ridgeline and 2017 Nissan Titan will be reviewed.

Both vehicles are large pickup trucks.

Crashworthiness

This test is rated with a good, acceptable, marginal, or poor grade. Vehicles capable of minimum bodily injuries, good driver’s space retention, and efficient restraints will be rated “good.”

Consequences such as the following are considered:

  • head injury
  • knee displacements
  • bone fractures
  • chest compression

Ridgeline slightly outperformed the Titan with its “good” rating in every single crashworthiness category. Nissan came short in the small overlap front test where they performed moderately, although the other four categories were all very graded good.

A potential cause for the shortcoming is the fact that 2017 was the first year ever that IIHS did this test on Titan. While Honda also took up the small overlap front test for the first time, they managed to meet the criteria for the highest rating.

A compliment to Nissan is the fact they performed well in the side test, even though this was the first time Titan was ever exposed to it.

Crash Avoidance & Mitigation

This test evaluates the system that the car uses to prevent deadly accidents. There are three grades: basic, marginal, or superior.

After conducting a review of both Honda and Nissan results, one can easily deduct that Ridgeline is the winner. 

Honda crash prevention was scored with six full points to get a superior grade, while Nissan Titan did not have any grade here at all. Furthermore, Ridgeline’s headlights were given a good rating and Titan was capped at a moderate mark.

Child Seat Anchors

The last test reviews how efficient is the child seat attachment hardware. Grading is the same as in crashworthiness, and both models received the “acceptable” grade here.

Models were condemned for having their latches placed in a way that it was hard to find them. Ridgeline was further criticized for using other tools that might be misunderstood for a latch, while the Titan required too much force to utilize the tool.

Ultimately, both manufacturers somewhat matched equally here.

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

Out of the two, Honda Ridgeline was selected as the top safety pick. This is because every single test in the crashworthiness category was scored with a “good” grade, whereas Nissan Titan got four out of five good grades, and one moderate grade for the small overlap front test.

Although both models are produced by Japanese masterminds, Honda seems to have the upper hand in safety.

Being selected as the Top Safety Pick, having better headlights, and completing more tests successfully, Honda entirely out-did Nissan.

Not to undermine what Nissan has worked on as their Titan model from 2017 is a pickup truck that has four very successful tests in crashworthiness, offers the same acceptable latch as Honda Ridgeline does.

Ultimately, Honda probably outperformed Nissan in the area of crash avoidance the most, as Nissan had a lack of those results.

  • Pickup trucks can be labeled as one of the most powerful vehicles on the market. Regardless of the enormous horsepower, drivers can still enjoy the great safety that manufacturers put in place
  • Getting educated on safety can be done in countless ways such as obtaining reviews from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)
  • Looking at 2017 Honda Ridgeline’s safety, it appears to have outperformed Nissan 2017 Titan model in many ways

Pickup trucks originally started as large vehicles for work like heavy lifting, transporting large items, and towing.

Since the 1950s, however, the environment started moving away from the work-related uses for a pickup truck, and by the end of the 20th century, very few owners purchased these metal giants for work.

Nowadays, they are more frequently used by common households who just yearn for a more powerful level of transportation.

Despite their presence among everyday drivers, pickups remain one of the most convenient options for farmers, construction workers, and similar types of independent contractors to handle their day-to-day business.

Are Honda’s trucks better than Nissan’s?

Although both models are produced by Japanese masterminds, Honda seems to have the upper hand in safety. Being selected as the Top Safety Pick, having better headlights, and completing more tests successfully, Honda entirely out-did Nissan.

Not to undermine what Nissan has worked on as their Titan model from 2017 is a pickup truck that has four very successful tests in crashworthiness, offers the same acceptable latch as Honda Ridgeline does.

Ultimately, Honda probably outperformed Nissan in the area of crash avoidance the most, as Nissan had a lack of those results.

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