Subaru Ascent, Forester get top ratings in IIHS seatbelt reminder test


The American arm of Subaru announced that the 2022 models of the Ascent and Forester SUVs have earned top ratings in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) newest evaluation program involving seatbelt reminders.


  • Which Subaru models were tested in IIHS' seatbelt reminder evaluation program?

    Tested were the 2022 Ascent and Forester.
  • What ratings did these SUVs get?

    Both SUVs got the highest possible "Good" rating.
  • “Subaru supports IIHS’s resounding efforts to spur the industry to achieve higher levels of vehicle safety and occupant protection. We are thrilled to hear Ascent and Forester received top ratings for their new program,” said Subaru of America President and CEO Thomas J. Doll.


    The new IIHS evaluation program rates seatbelt reminders as “Good,” “Acceptable,” “Marginal,” or “Poor” based primarily on the volume, duration, and timing of the audible alert. Vehicles will only earn a “Good” rating if their seatbelt reminder system generates an audible signal and visual alert on the dashboard display, overhead panel, or center console when the vehicle is moving at least six miles per hour and if the system detects an unbelted occupant in one of the front-row seating positions or the unfastening of a second-row belt that was previously buckled.

    In addition, the audible alert must be loud enough to be heard over the background noise in the vehicle cabin. If the seat belt of an occupied front-row seat remains unbuckled, the visual and audible reminders must last at least 90 seconds. If a previously fastened second-row belt is unbuckled, the reminders must last at least 30 seconds. A visual indicator that appears when the driver starts the vehicle is also required for the second row.

    The 2022 Subaru Ascent and 2022 Subaru Forester were among the 26 small and midsize SUVs tested for the seatbelt reminder evals and both of Subaru’s SUVs managed to receive the highest possible rating of “Good.”

    According to Subaru, “both models feature audible alerts that the human ear perceives as approximately four times louder than the ambient vehicle noise at test speeds. These alerts do not end until the offending belt is fastened, and they meet all the other requirements for both front and rear reminders.”

    In the US, federal standards require seatbelt reminders to have audible signals that last from four to eight seconds and a visual alert that lasts for at least 60 seconds whenever the driver’s seatbelt is unbuckled.

    Both the Ascent and the Forester featured audible alerts that are four times more perceptible to the human ear and are louder than the ambient noise inside the vehicle. Furthermore, these alerts will not stop until the unbuckled belt is fastened.

    Photos from Subaru

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