Not Registered?
Shopping for a Safe Car

New Jersey car insurance providers understand that most people have specific criteria in mind about style, comfort, power and manageability when shopping for a new car. This is also true for safety features. Since every new car is required to meet federal safety standards, one might assume all cars are equally safe, though this is not the case. While federal law mandates minimum safety standards, some auto manufacturers go above and beyond these minimums. And besides buying a safer vehicle, a Cheap Online Car Insurance policy from IFA may even save you money in the process.

The following safety feature categories are listed below in an effort to guide our cheap online car insurance customers in selecting the safest vehicle for your lifestyle and budget:

  • Crashworthiness: This general safety quality lowers the serious injury or death risk should a crash occur. It is established by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and rating guidelines can be found on their website at
  • Vehicle Structural Design: Solid structural design displays a strong occupant compartment or safety cage. It also includes front and rear ends that are designed to absorb much of a crash’s impact, to minimize and prevent the safety cage from collapsing, which thereby further protects its occupants.
  • Vehicle Size and Weight: The law of physics determines that heavier cars are safer than lighter cars. Statistically, small cars have twice as many annual deaths than larger cars. In crashes between larger and smaller vehicles, larger cars push smaller, lighter cars backwards, decreasing larger car damaging while increasing smaller car damage or injury.
  • Restraint Systems: As determined by law, air bags, belts and head restraints combine to protect people and minimize impact in a serious crash. Lap/shoulder belts keep the body in place, preventing hard surface impact that could otherwise occur without them. They also keep the body from being ejected. Without belts, physics also dictates the body’s motion will continue until stopped, which can cause serious injury or death.

    Shoulder belts are designed with inertia reels, allowing the upper body to move during normal driving. They lock, however, upon hard braking or impact. Belt webbing stored in the reel in some vehicles could release too much slack and permit the body to hit the steering wheel, dashboard or windshield. Other vehicles have addressed this problem by including tensioners that activate the belt early, thereby preventing forward movement.

    Air bags and lap/shoulder belts in combination are quite effective. In some situations, however, a deploying air bag can cause serious injury or death. Consequently, it is advisable to select a vehicle that allows the driver to reach the gas and brakes comfortably without being to near or ‘on top of’ it when it inflates. Some models provide a telescoping steering column that can ameliorate this problem.

    Side air bags are designed to protect the chest, although they have an added benefit in keeping the head from striking interior or protruding structures. Further, head restraints are required in all passenger front seats to keep the head from snapping back or injuring the neck in a rear-end collision. Differences exist, however, in head restraint designs with some being adjustable and some being fixed and with some being closer or further from the head. It is advisable to select a vehicle with head restraints directly behind the head, that are adjustable and that can be locked into place.
  • Anti-lock Brakes: Conventional brakes may lock and cause skidding, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle. In contrast, anti-lock brakes pump the brakes multiple times per second to prevent lockup and maintain control of the car. If trained to pump your brakes or apply continuous pressure, you may need to retrain yourself of this habit. Further, while anti-lock brakes aid in keeping steering control, they won’t necessarily prevent the vehicle from stopping faster.
  • Daytime Running Lights: Many new vehicles are designed with daytime running lights that are activated by the ignition switch. Typically, they are either high-beam headlights operating at reduced intensity or low-beam lights at full or reduced power. This lighting feature contrasts your vehicle with the environment around it, making it more visible to oncoming drivers during the day, thereby reducing accident potential.
  • On-the-road Experience: High-profile, small utility vehicles and pickups are prone to roll-overs. Since these vehicles have higher-than-average death rates, drivers are cautioned to avoid using excessive speed which can contribute to the dangerous roll-over situation.