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A tiny orange Smart car is parked, plugged into a charging station.
The Smart Fortwo – a little car with big passenger protection.

You may have heard a grumpy refrain from an elder that “smart cars” offer no protection in an accident. The one that comes to mind is this tiny car, made by the manufacturer, Smart Fortwo. It’s one of the smallest cars on the road and depending on the model, is either gasoline-powered or electric. While a car this size is an extreme example often used in safety concerns, it actually holds up fairly well in crash tests.

So are EVs any better in crashes than gas-powered vehicles? Despite news stories about EV fires, it turns out they may have some safety advantages to traditional vehicles.

Some EVs are safer than others

Though having a smaller car may be more dangerous than a full-size sedan, the little Smart car has better safety ratings than you think. The car received 5 stars on their Fortwo’s side crash safety test

Tesla’s vehicles are among the safest on the road. The Tesla Model X is on the Kelly Blue Book Best Rated Electric Cars of 2019, and the Tesla Model 3 received top crash test ratings in various safety organizations.

Other EVs with great safety ratings include the Chevrolet Volt, the Subaru Crosstec, and Volvo XC60 and XC90.

Easy maintenance = fewer accidents

Electric cars are simpler and require less maintenance. There are simply fewer parts to take care of, and therefore, to malfunction or cause a breakdown. They don’t need oil changes, fuel filters, spark plugs, or emissions checks. Needless to say, the fewer things that can go wrong, the safer you’ll on your drive.

Less maintenance also means less cost for you in the long run. You’ll be more likely to spend on repairs when they do actually arise, making sure your vehicle is in working order.

More space for safety

Fewer components also mean engineers have more room to add safety features in EVs. The motor has more room to be moved within the car and leaves more crunch-room for collisions.

Less chance of a fire

A black Smart car is on fire on the side of the freeway
Electric vehicle fires are rare compared to their gas-fueled counterparts.

Despite the appearance of electric car fires in the news, occurrences of EV fires are much rarer than gasoline-powered vehicles. An average of 150 gasoline-fueled car fires occurs daily. However, since EVs are relatively new, the news focuses on EVs and the dangers they pose.

However, while EV fires are rarer, the fire are more difficult to put out due to the nature of a battery. This is a drawback, but ultimately a small one considering the fire will be less likely to happen in the first place.

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