The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has recognized the 2020 Nissan Rogue compact SUV and 2020 Nissan Maxima midsize sedan with Top Safety Pick awards. The 2019 models were also given the accolade.
The Rogue earns the award when equipped with specific headlights, while the Maxima qualifies with specific headlights available after June, according to the institute.
The vehicles were put through six rigorous crashworthiness evaluations, including the driver-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength, head restraint tests, and passenger-side small overlap front tests.
The Rogue earned good ratings in the first five crash tests and an acceptable rating in the passenger-side small overlap crash test, while the Maxima aced all six texts — garnering good ratings across the board.
To capture Top Safety Pick status, vehicles must also earn an advanced or superior rating for front crash prevention and a good or acceptable headlight rating.
For front crash prevention, the Rogue excelled — scoring a superior rating. In IIHS track tests, its system reduced its impact speed by an average of 11 mph in the 12 mph test and avoided a collision in the 25 mph test.
The 2019 and 2020 Maximas have standard front crash prevention systems that rate superior, though the systems are different. In IIHS track tests, the 2019 Maxima's standard system avoided a collision in the 12 mph test and reduced its impact speed by an average of 11 mph in the 25 mph test. The 2020's standard system, which is available as an option on the 2019 model as well, prevented crashes in both 12 and 25 mph tests.
Finally, headlights — perhaps the most basic of safety features — are where automakers often fall short. That was not the case for both Nissan models.
The Rogue's best available headlights — LED projectors with high-beam assist — earned an acceptable rating. The Maxima earned an acceptable headlight rating for its available LED reflector headlights with high-beam assist for models built after June 2019.
Those acceptable ratings for headlights give the vehicles the final criteria needed to garner a Top Safety Pick award.