2019 Lexus UX crossover earns Top Safety Pick award from IIHS

The 2019 Lexus UX is an IIHS Top Safety Pick, but only with certain headlights equipped.

The insurance-funded safety body said this month that the UX aced its slew of crash tests, including the trickier passenger-side small overlap front test. To qualify for a Top Safety Pick, a vehicle must earn “Good” ratings in all crash tests save for the passenger-side small overlap front test. There, the vehicle can earn an “Acceptable” rating and still earn the award. A vehicle must also get an “Acceptable” or “Good” rating for its headlights and an “Advanced” or “Superior” rating for front crash prevention.

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The UX avoided crashes at both 12 mph and 25 mph with its standard active safety equipment, the IIHS said.

One area was an issue, though. The base headlights didn’t cut the mustard. The sub-compact crossover is available with adaptive headlights that point into turns. The IIHS scored these headlights as “Acceptable,” but buyers who don’t spend the extra coin for the adaptive lights will be saddled with headlights rated as “Poor.” The base headlights produce excessive glare from the low beams, per the IIHS. Both headlight options do come with automatic high-beam assist, however.

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The cost for the premium headlights is $1,660 over the $33,025 starting price of a UX. That will earn the Top Safety Pick award.