Press Releases

XC90 Low Speed Bumper Rating


Toronto, Canada (March 19, 2003) - On Tuesday, March 18th, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety released the results of their low speed bumper ratings. The XC90 was tested in a low speed crash and rated 'Poor'. The IIHS is citing high repair costs as an issue for the XC90 in this type of crash.


Key Messages for Volvo retailers, customer service and staff:

  • The IIHS bumper report is based solely on cost of repair. It is not a safety rating. The XC90 includes some of the most extensive safety features in its class, include three world's firsts. The IIHS has different priorities related to the insurance industry.
  • When we compare this non-safety component to others in our class (Acura MDX, BMW X5, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Lexus RX300 and Mercedes-Benz ML320), we found our cost estimates for front and rear low speed replacement parts are well within this group. In fact, considering Volvo's bumper comes painted, in the exact same painting process used during factory assembly, we believe Volvo offers a better solution at a fair market price than the competition.


Each manufacturer must make their own decisions regarding the priorities of their bumper design. There are many factors involved in a crash including timing, positioning, materials and energy absorption. Since each manufacturer works independently and according to their own objectives, no two systems are identical and thus it is expected that they will behave differently in every crash test situation.


Volvo believes that safety extends beyond bumper standards. Among many other awards, the XC90 is the winner of the CAA's Pyramid Award for Safety, recognizing outstanding achievement in safety technology on the XC90.


The XC90 features:

  • Roll Stability Control
  • Safety cage reinforced with Boron steel
  • Inflatable curtain for all three rows of seats
  • Pyrotechnic pre-tensioners on all belts in 7 seating positions
  • Side Impact Protections System (body structure and air bags)
  • Whiplash Protection System
  • Energy Absorbing hood for lessening impact on pedestrians


The XC90 is designed to meet premium customer expectations, internal standards and government regulations in the areas of safety, quality, environment, size and styling.


Nearly 30 years of worldwide traffic research by Volvo that reflects approximately 30,000 accidents have helped Volvo determine how best to optimize occupant safety. Unsolicited letters from people who became members of the Volvo Saved My Life Club confirm the real world behaviour of our products.

Questions: Please contact Doug Mepham at 416 975-1572 or

XC90 (2002-2014), Safety, Quality, 2003
Descriptions and facts in this press material relate to Volvo Cars's international car range. Described features might be optional. Vehicle specifications may vary from one country to another and may be altered without prior notification.