Since the launch of Model S in 2012, we have engineered every Tesla around the same advanced architecture that maximizes occupant safety. Today, Model Y, Tesla’s mid-size Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV), is the latest Tesla vehicle to earn a 5-star safety rating in every category from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
As part of their 2020 New Car Assessment Program, NHTSA tested Model Y Long Range All-Wheel Drive (AWD). We expect similar results for all Model Y variants, including our Performance AWD and single motor, rear-wheel drive variants in the future.
What makes Model Y safe?
Model 3 and Model Y were developed largely on the same platform, and this shared architecture is fundamental to both vehicles’ safety. To accommodate its higher mass and larger cabin space as an SUV, Model Y’s body structure is fortified and strengthened even further than Model 3 in pursuit of its 5-star safety rating.
At its core, in the event of a collision, Model Y is engineered to distribute crash forces around the cabin and away from vehicle occupants, greatly reducing the risk of injury. Our front and rear crumple zones and optimized side structures enable Model Y to manage crash energy very efficiently, reducing accelerations on the vehicle and, more critically, its occupants.
Additionally, Model Y’s structure now includes the world’s largest casting. Along with a fortified battery pack, these elements mitigate intrusion into the cabin, creating a robust safety cell with enough room for our advanced restraint systems to deploy and provide even more occupant protection.
Rollovers significantly increase the risk of injury during an accident. To calculate rollover resistance in NHTSA’s test, Model Y is parked on a suspended platform that rotates in all directions to physically measure center of gravity and moments of inertia. NHTSA’s assessment determined that Model Y has a rollover risk of 7.9%, the lowest of any SUV recorded to date by the organization.
As with all Tesla vehicles, Model Y’s architecture is fundamentally designed to have a very low center of gravity, which is accomplished by strategically placing its heavy battery pack and electric motors low down in the vehicle.
Safety is at the core of every Tesla vehicle, and Model Y benefits from years of immense passion for vehicle safety. Every Tesla comes standard with advanced crash-avoidance and pedestrian protection features, including Automatic Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning and Forward Collision Warning, among others. By providing the most advanced equipment and technologies, our goal is to help customers prevent avoidable accidents whenever possible, and, when they are not avoidable, to help mitigate injury to the fullest extent possible. Indeed, we believe Model Y to be among the safest vehicles available to consumers on the road.
For more information and raw crash test data from NHTSA, visit the nhtsa.gov/ratings website and the following US Government Public Dockets NHTSA-2020-0029, NHTSA-2019-0088, NHTSA-2018-0081, NHTSA-2017-0037, NHTSA-2016-0045, NHTSA-2015-0034, NHTSA-2014-0043, NHTSA-2013-0053, NHTSA-2012-0055, NHTSA-2011-0085, NHTSA-2010-0164.