Tesla’s top safety rating comes with fine print – 8/23/13

The Center for Auto Safety is the nation’s premier independent, member driven, non-profit consumer advocacy organization dedicated to improving vehicle safety, quality, and fuel economy on behalf of all drivers, passengers, and pedestrians.

Is the Tesla Model S really the safest car on the road?

One key fact went unnoticed this week as Tesla Motors Inc. trumpeted its “best” crash-test rating in the media: The federal government doesn’t test most other luxury cars.

So the Model S may be safer than many cars costing far less. But whether it’s safer than direct competitors from BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz — considered among the safest cars available — remains a mystery.

What’s more, the federal safety regulators privately reprimanded the automaker for publicly claiming the Model S scored better than any other car, according to a source familiar with the discussions. In fact, Tesla is among seven cars since 2011 that received the highest rating in all categories, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Click here to view the full story from the Los Angeles Times