2019 BMW 3-Series aces IIHS crash tests, named Top Safety Pick+

The 2019 BMW 3-Series sedan aced a barrage of crash tests, the insurance industry-funded IIHS said last week. With specific headlights, the 2019 3-Series is rated a Top Safety Pick+.

The redesigned sedan earned a “Good” rating in every crash test performed. To qualify for a Top Safety Pick+, a car must earn “Good” ratings in the driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength, and head restraint tests. This was the first time the IIHS tested any 3-Series in the passenger-side small overlap front test, which is notoriously trickier for automakers to score well in.

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Not only must the car do well in the traditional crash tests, but it must also earn a “Superior” rating for its collision-avoidance technology such as automatic emergency braking and a “Good” headlight rating. Both the standard active safety technology and the 3-Series’ optional advanced gear earned the “Superior” rating.

The 2019 3-Series’ headlights are a mixed bag, however.

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The only versions that received the “Good” rating for headlights were the 330i and 330i xDrive equipped with the Executive package. The 330i equipped with the optional Convenience package only earned a “Marginal” score for its headlights. The base 330i earned a “Poor” rating, partially due to the lack of curve-adaptive and automatic high-beam headlights. As is increasingly common, the best-rated headlights are locked away in a pricier package.

Any buyer sold on the Top Safety Pick+ status will need to fork over the extra cash to equip the Executive package, which costs about $9,000 more than the base 330i.