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Ford Freestyle Crossover Earns Top Ratings in NHTSA & IIHS Crash Testing

September 18, 2006

DEARBORN, MI – The Ford Freestyle crossover has earned the highest available crash test ratings from both the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). The Ford Freestyle earned the highest possible five-star rating in both the government’s frontal- and side-impact crash test modes.

In recent IIHS testing, the 2006 Freestyle, with optional side airbags, earned the Institute’s highest side-impact rating. A three row Safety Canopy side airbag system with rollover sensor is available and provides additional protection not only in certain side collisions but in rollover events as well.

Freestyle, Five Hundred, and Mercury Montego all come standard with the innovative Safety Canopy system, which offers enhanced head protection for all occupants in case of side impact collisions or rollover accidents.

Freestyle previously earned the IIHS’ “best pick” designation in frontal offset crash test performance. Following its 40-mph offset frontal barrier crash test, IIHS noted that Freestyle’s occupant compartment experienced minimal intrusion by maintaining its integrity very well — an essential factor in helping to protect vehicle occupants in a frontal crash.

IIHS previously recognized Freestyle, as well as the Ford Five Hundred and Mercury Montego sedans, because their structures and restraints’ systems were designed and fine-tuned to provide a high level of safety by achieving a balance between ability to absorb crash pulse energy and attain a controlled rate of occupant deceleration.

Ford also broke new ground in safety with Freestyle’s innovative adaptive steering column that collapses horizontally at two different load levels based on safety belt usage and seat position. Driver airbag deployment level is tailored to the occupant, based on the position of the driver’s seat track.

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