The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety releases results of latest SUV crash tests

DETROIT (AP) -- The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says crash test results for mid-size SUVs put the 2009 Nissan Murano pulling out in front.

The Murano was the only vehicle in the group of nine to get the highest rating in front, side and rear crash tests. The institute praised Nissan for making electronic stability control, which helps prevent swerving, standard on the 2009 Murano.

The Hummer H3 came out of the crash testing battered and bruised with some of the poorest results. It was the only vehicle in the group not to get the top rating for a front crash protection. It was given the rating of "acceptable" because the test indicated the driver's leg could get hurt.

A GM spokesman says the tests "represent one measurement of crash performance."

The institute says it downgraded side crash results for the H3, Kia Sorento and Jeep Liberty/Dodge Nitro because they all lacked air bags that protected the torso.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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