The 2019 Chevrolet Bolt EV has just been given a significantly better assessment of its safety from the IIHS.
On Wednesday it was named an IIHS Top Safety pick, with a retest of its headlamps, which had previously been rated “poor.”
GM reported to IIHS in September that it had adjusted the Bolt EV’s headlight aim, versus what had originally been tested. With a new test, the IIHS confirmed that glare is no longer an issue and gave the headlights an “acceptable” rating.
One thing doesn’t change, however. As we’ve pointed out before, the Bolt EV isn’t easy—or isn’t easy on your budget—to equip with automatic emergency braking. It requires the $1,545 Driver Confidence II Package, which also brings a long list of other extras you might not necessarily want, like active lane control, rear cross-traffic alert, a blind-zone alert, heated seats, and a heated steering wheel.
2019 Chevrolet Bolt EV
To be a 2019 Top Safety Pick, a vehicle needs to achieve an “acceptable” or “good” rating for headlight test and the passenger-side small overlap front test—plus “advanced” or “superior” ratings for front crash prevention and top “good” ratings in other areas. Headlights aside, the Bolt met all the qualifications before.
The Tesla Model 3 and Audi E-tron both do even better, qualifying for the Top Safety Pick+ nod, with “good” ratings in the headlight test and all the occupant-protection categories.
The IIHS notes that the upgraded rating applies to all 2019 Bolt EV models as well as 2018 models built after March 2018.
It hasn’t yet expanded those ratings to the 2020 Chevrolet Bolt EV, with its longer 259-mile driving range and a number of other upgrades. The 2020 Bolt EV should start reaching dealerships before the end of the year, but in the meantime there are plenty of 2019s still around.