With minivans once again growing in popularity, there are a lot of new choices on the market today—but only one earned a place among the 2011 Top Safety Picks chosen by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS): That was the all-new Toyota Sienna. Only vehicles that offer electronic stability control and score the highest possible marks in the IIHS’ front, side, rear and rollover crash evaluations earn the award, so this is no small honor for Toyota’s “Swagger Wagon.”
Maryland Toyota Dealers said it ‘s further evidence of Toyota’s renewed dedication to customer safety, which also includes making the company’s Star Safety System a standard feature on the Sienna. This comprehensive suite of safety technologies includes anti-lock brakes, brake-force distribution, brake assist, vehicle stability control and traction control. Seven airbags are standard as well, ranging from dual-stage front and seat-mounted airbags for the front seats to a new driver’s-side knee airbag and side-curtain airbags that extend the length of the cabin to offer protection to passengers in all rows.
The 2011 Sienna stands apart from the crowd for other reasons, too. Completely redesigned for the new model year, Toyota’s minivan offers a choice of both four- and six-cylinder engines, front- or all-wheel drive, a sporty SE model that delivers a surprisingly dynamic driving experience, aggressive sheet metal, a roomier and more versatile interior than the 2010 model, and much more. According to Toyota Beaverton, thanks to these kinds of advantages, sales of the Sienna were up nearly 20 percent through November of this year.
Annapolis Scion told us that seven other Toyota products also were named to the 2011 list of IIHS Top Safety Picks:
“Toyota is pleased to have received eight IIHS Top Safety Picks for 2011, which we believe is reflective of our ongoing commitment to developing safe and reliable vehicles for our customers,” said a company representative.