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

Nissan and Toyota's large trucks have similar safety ratings, but there are a few notable exceptions. Both large trucks cost about $122 a month to insure.

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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: Sep 15, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • The 2017 models of the Nissan Titan and Toyota Tundra have very similar safety ratings issued by the IIHS, but there are two notable exceptions
  • Neither of these two trucks earned the coveted title of Top Safety Pick for 2017
  • The safety ratings of a large truck may be reviewed by an auto insurance provider and may be used in part to generate your premium quote
  • Both Nissan and Toyota large trucks will cost an average of $122 a month to insure.


When you are in the market to buy a new large truck, you may be excited to get out on the open road and cruise in your vehicle. The thought of potentially being involved in a collision or in another type of accident may not cross your mind.

However, trucks are involved in collisions and accidents regularly, and many of these events are caused by inexperienced drivers, poor weather conditions, and other factors.

With this in mind, there may be little that you can do to completely avoid all potential mishaps in your new truck. Make sure to use our free quote tool above.

The good news is that many automakers have focused heavily on improving the safety level of their various models.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety / Highway Data Loss Institute (IIHS) annually reviews many makes and models to determine their overall safety level on the road.

In 2017, this organization reviewed 12 of the top large truck models, and you may benefit from learning more about the findings before you determine which model of truck you want to buy.

Is Nissan more reliable than Toyota?

If you are like others who are in the market to by a new truck, you may be eyeing the 2017 Nissan Titan as well as the Toyota Tundra. These are two of the more popular models of large trucks on the market today, and they both have incredible appeal with truck buyers.

However, because the IIHS safety ratings for these and other trucks could play a role in your safety level on the road as well as on the cost of your truck insurance for the entire time that you own the vehicle, you need to understand what the safety ratings for these two trucks say.

The IIHS analyzes safety details and data for leading makes and models in multiple vehicle classes, including large trucks.

In this particular vehicle class, it reviewed a dozen truck models for 2017, and it rated each of them in eight safety categories. The analysis of these categories includes a rating:

  • good
  • acceptable
  • marginal
  • poor

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What truck has the best crash rating? Nissan or Toyota?

Crashworthiness is a primary IIHS safety section with five sub-categories, and it indicates a vehicle’s overall ability to keep occupants safe in a collision.

The Nissan Titan registered with a “marginal” rate for Front Small Overlap, and it had a “good” rating for Head Restraints and Seats, Side, Front Moderate Overlap, and Roof Strength.

The Tundra had a “marginal” Headlight rating, an “average” Roof Strength score, and a “good” rate in all other Crashworthiness areas.

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Crash Avoidance and Mitigation

Crash Avoidance and Mitigation features two sub-categories, and it examines how well a vehicle either avoids a crash or reduces the extent of the damage.

The 2017 Nissan Titan has a “marginal” Headlight score, and it was not ranked for the Front Crash Prevention sub-category. On the other hand, the Tundra had a “poor” Headlight rating, and it also was not rated for Front Crash Prevention.

Child Safety Seat Anchor LATCH

The proper use of a child safety seat is critical if you plan to drive with young children in your truck. The LATCH safety category describes how easy to use the anchor latches are in the truck. Both the 2017 Titan and the 2017 Tundra had an “average” score in this area.

Nissan or Toyota – Which is better?

If your primary goal is to find a truck that is truly safe to drive, you may want to take a closer look at the truck model that earned the IIHS title of Top Safety Pick.

This honor is given to vehicles that rank high in several key safety categories. However, the Tundra and the Titan were not given this title for 2017.

Truck buyers who are most interested in safety on the road will lean toward buying the Tundra extended cab model.

While there were variations in all models in the Headlights and LATCH safety categories for IIHS, there is a notable difference in the Front Small Overlap safety area. 

The Tundra extended cab is the top option to consider when you are in the market to buy a large truck in 2017.

Requesting Several Truck Insurance Quotes Today

Before you ultimately decide which large truck model you should buy, you should spend a few hours gathering together and analyzing truck insurance quotes.

Truck insurance will become a regular expense in your budget, so you need to confirm that it is affordable to you.

The safety rating on each model can impact cost, but other factors also affect insurance costs, such as the power of the engine and the replacement value.

When you request a couple of current coverage quotes for the top two or three models that you are thinking about buying, you can easily determine which model may be more affordable to own.

Don’t miss out on our free quote tool below—Just enter your ZIP code and start comparing rates now.

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