SUVs are loved by families who need space and comfort to move around. They are a tough car to beat in most situations, but they don’t fare so well when it comes to blind spots.
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Blind spots are the areas that surround your vehicle that are challenging to see. They are usually found in the car’s rear corners, on either side of the hood, along the sides, and behind the back window.
In this article, we take a deeper look at SUVs, blind spots, and issues related to safety.
Here’s a Quick Look at Why SUVs Have More Blind Spots:
The A-pillars of an SUV, which are broader than the B and C-pillars to give more crash protection to the larger vehicle, are to be blamed for the vehicle’s inclination for blind spots. Furthermore, their width, high ride height, and extended front end contribute to greater blind spots.
Do SUVs Have More Blind Spots Than Sedans?
The difference when driving a sedan versus an SUV has much to do with the size of the vehicle. This single aspect affects many other crucial factors, such as:
- Braking distance
- Blind spots
- Collision safety
Therefore, SUVs have larger blind-spot zones than compact sedans and hatchbacks due to their larger bodies and higher ground clearance. Still, there are SUVs with the fewest blind spots and you’d want to go for them.
Many drivers are unaware that their car has a blind spot ahead of them. Generally, SUVs have more significant front blind spots than a sedan.
According to Consumer Reports, for the average-height driver, the typical SUV has a front blind spot of at least 5.5m, but the sedan has a blind spot of only 4m.
It’s crucial to find out how big your front blind spot is if you drive an SUV. If a front and rear camera are available for your vehicle’s model, consider it because it can improve your overall visibility, helping you avoid future accidents.
Ultimately, the size of the vehicle should be considered while driving an SUV. This factor must be understood because it affects other driving factors, such as how large blind spots are.
Are Blind Spots Bigger for SUV Vehicles?
Every motorist must deal with blind spots, regardless of how precisely they position their car’s rearview mirrors or how well they believe their vehicle is equipped.
Studies conducted by experts have sought to determine the rear blind zones of many popular vehicles and have revealed two important things that impact a driver’s blind spots:
- The bigger the car is, the larger the blind spots will be
- The shorter the driver is, the larger the blind spots will be
SUVs are taller and larger than other cars, meaning they have longer hoods. This increases their front blind spot.
Although an SUV may allow you to see the road ahead more clearly, you might find that it is challenging to determine where your car’s hood may finish.
Their larger design, which fits with broader A-pillars for extra safety, makes it more difficult for drivers to see what’s happening behind them or on their sides.
This factor alone suggests many other cars have fewer blind spots than SUVs.
Therefore, there are a few essential circumstances in which you should be extra vigilant as an SUV driver:
- Lane changes
- You’re particularly prone to blind-spot mishaps during lane changes.
- When near cyclists, runners, and pedestrians
- Pay extra attention when driving near busy intersections and parking lots. It’s easy for bystanders to quickly disappear into a driver’s blind spot when on foot.
- If a motorcyclist is nearby
- Due to its compact body, your sight of a motorcycle can be quickly lost in a blind spot.
The designs of SUVs vary drastically – while some have exceptional visibility, others do not.
Remember, a driver’s height is a factor that plays a part in how big blind spots are.
You must have the skill of recognizing your blind spots through careful monitoring when driving an SUV.
Are SUVs Involved in More Blind-Spot-Related Accidents?
To answer this question, researchers have examined data from fatal pedestrian collisions reported to the police in North Carolina between 2010 and 2018.
According to these statistics, SUVs are 23% more likely to strike a pedestrian than another vehicle and 61% more likely than standard cars to run over a pedestrian on the side of the road.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) attempts to reason for these statistics (at the time of writing).
The government roof-strength requirements intended to avoid collapse in rollover crashes have resulted in SUVs having thicker A-Pillars than regular cars.
While pillars are broader because they need to support the heavier weights of the SUV, this, accompanied by longer hoods, results in more prominent bind spots and more accidents involving SUVs and pedestrians.
Another report emphasizes the risks associated with blind zones in various large SUVs, particularly for kids, and how they have contributed to front-over collisions.
Blind spots near an SUV’s hood depend on several factors:
- The driver’s height
- The height of their seating position
- The size of the vehicle
- Height of an object
- The inclination of the road
While the report suggests that it has counted 575 front-over deaths in the last ten years, they anticipate that there will be many more with the ever-growing popularity of SUVs.
This staggering statistic has led the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to agree to investigate concerns regarding front-over incidents that feature front blind zones of up to 16 feet of large SUVs.
Are SUVs Generally Safer Than Cars?
When it comes to driving, there are different things people have to consider when choosing their vehicle.
While some of us pick small cars to save on gas, others prefer to drive SUVs because they’re bigger and safer.
But is that truly the case?
To popular belief, most individuals make the assumption that SUVs are safer than smaller vehicles.
Considering the size and weight of an SUV, both significantly lower the number of fatal collisions, so this assumption makes sense.
However, life-saving safety features are equally available in smaller cars and SUVs, and many smaller vehicles have high safety ratings.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), rollovers are more likely to happen to occupants in heavier, larger vehicles with a higher center of gravity.
SUVs are designed with extra space due to their large design, but this comes with an increased center of gravity compared to other cars.
This increases their instability, making them more susceptible to rollovers.
That said, it’s true that in vehicle collisions, larger vehicles tend to win.
Therefore, SUV drivers are less likely to be injured in a crash, whether they’re the ones causing it or not.
While both SUVs and cars come with safety extra safety features, SUV drivers and passengers tend to be safer during an accident.
2 Safe SUVs With the Fewest Blind Spots
While most SUVs are plagued with more extensive blind spot areas than smaller cars. Many SUV manufacturers have taken steps to improve visibility in recent years.
Here are two of the safest SUVs with the fewest blind spots.
1. 2022 Subaru Forester
The 2022 Subaru Forester has exceptional visibility, which not all SUVs can claim.
The stylish design of the new 2022 Forester reflects Subaru’s focus on providing drivers with excellent visibility and fewer blind spot mishaps.
It features functional front quarter windows that allow an excellent view for blind spots and the slim roof A-pillars.
The Forester also measures 9.2 inches of ground clearance, allowing for a higher seating position and improved vision.
The vehicle was clearly developed to provide a clean line of sight in almost all directions.
2. 2022 Honda Pilot
The 2022 Honda Pilot combines bold new design cues with a wide-ranging view of the road.
This three-row vehicle is one of the best SUVs on the market in terms of visibility.
The Pilot has a maximum ground clearance of 7.3 inches, which is lower than other popular competitors.
However, it compensates for that with blind spot detection technology and sensing safety features.
Every Pilot now has access to sensor and camera-based technologies that help drivers look out for hazards on the road.
Furthermore, these features can take appropriate steps during dangerous situations, like applying the brakes automatically to prevent accidents and injury occurring to vehicle passengers.
A multi-view backup sensor and camera come standard with all Honda Pilots to improve rear visibility out the back window.
2 SUVs With Many Blind Spots to Be Aware Of
When purchasing an SUV, it’s essential to be aware of the vehicle’s blind spots. A car with blind spots can make driving more dangerous than it needs to be.
Below are two SUVs with the most blind spots you should be aware of.
1. Toyota FJ Cruiser
One of the most recognizable vehicles from Toyota is the FJ Cruiser.
Toyota debuted its SUV for the first time in 2006 with vintage styling, dependable power, and legitimate off-road capabilities.
Despite these sought-after qualities, the vehicle features limited visibility.
Due to its blocky design, large A-pillars, and spare tire that blocks the rearview windscreen, it possesses some of the worst blind spots of any SUV today.
2. Nissan Murano
The Nissan Murano distinguishes itself as a stylish SUV thanks to its eye-catching external design.
However, the vehicle’s uninteresting handling and low load capacity make it less adaptable than its SUV competitors.
Additionally, its style sacrifices visibility.
It has one of the worst rear windshield views compared to other SUVs because its roofline slopes downward and interferes with the back window.
Since 2015 Nissan has refused to change the design. This raises potential concern that there is greater care for aesthetics rather than visibility.
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