The Tesla Model S was recently crash tested, and the company took the all-round five-star rating and some of the details of the testing to mean not just that it's a five-star car, but that it's the safest car ever.
"NHTSA does not publish a star rating above 5, however safety levels better than 5 stars are captured in the overall Vehicle Safety Score (VSS) provided to manufacturers, where the Model S achieved a new combined record of 5.4 stars.
Of all vehicles tested, including every major make and model approved for sale in the United States, the Model S set a new record for the lowest likelihood of injury to occupants. While the Model S is a sedan, it also exceeded the safety score of all SUVs and minivans. This score takes into account the probability of injury from front, side, rear and rollover accidents."
- Tesla Motor Press Release
Of course, the NHTSA had something to say about this particular piece of hyperbole. "NHTSA does not rate vehicles beyond 5 stars and does not rank or order vehicles within the star rating categories. In addition, the agency has guidelines in place for manufacturers and advertising agencies to follow to ensure that accurate and consistent information is conveyed to the public." The governing body went on to say that the NHTSA "strongly discourages the use of potentially misleading words such as 'perfect,' 'safest,' 'flawless' or 'best in class' to describe the star rating received by the vehicle."
Of course, the Model S did do particularly well in the tests, and even managed to cause the roof-crushing machine to malfunction before the car was deformed, so the company's claims hold some water, even if the "5.4 Star Rating" is a bit silly.
[via Yahoo Autos, Tesla Motors]