By on June 13, 2017

SUV Headlight, Public Domain

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has been systematically tearing apart every segment over inadequate headlights for the past year. In its most recent study, midsize SUVs took a beating, with only two models garnering a “good” rating for their illumination capabilities. The other 35 continued a trend of providing lackluster performance from a safety standpoint — especially non-luxury offerings.

Lousy headlights are something the IIHS seems hellbent on calling out, especially after years of avoiding any heavy scrutiny. This is the fourth segment the institute has evaluated since it began rating headlights in 2016. Its newly established headlight ratings have resulted in fewer cars being awarded an IIHS Top Safety Pick+, as headlights must rate in the “good” or “acceptable” range to even be considered.

For the IIHS’s 2017 model year study, the Hyundai Santa Fe and Volvo XC60 were the only two vehicles available with good-rated headlights among the 19 midsize SUVs and 18 luxury midsize SUVs evaluated.

“As a group, midsize SUV headlights perform slightly better than the other SUVs and pickups we evaluated last year, and that’s encouraging,” says IIHS Senior Research Engineer Matt Brumbelow. “Still, we continue to see headlights that compromise safety because they only provide a short view down the road at night.”

Mainstream midsize SUVs achieving an acceptable headlight safety score were few and far between. Only the Honda Pilot, Jeep Cherokee, Jeep Grand Cherokee, and Toyota Highlander were able to avoid an unacceptable score. The Dodge Durango, Ford Flex, GMC Acadia, Nissan Murano, Nissan Pathfinder, and 2018 Chevrolet Equinox all achieved a marginal rating.

Fairing poor was the Dodge Journey, Ford Edge, Ford Explorer, GMC Terrain, Hyundai Santa Fe Sport, Jeep Wrangler, Kia Sorento, and Toyota 4Runner.

In the luxury category, the Acura MDX and RDX, BMW X5, Buick Envision, Infiniti QX70, Lexus NX and RX, and Mercedes-Benz GLE all achieved an acceptable rating. Poor-rated vehicles included the Infiniti QX60, Lincoln MKC, and Lincoln MKX. The BMW X3, Cadillac XT5, Infiniti QX50, Lincoln MKT, Volvo XC90 and upcoming Audi Q5 were middle of the road.

The Nissan Pathfinder’s and Volvo XC90’s updated LEDs moved both models up from the poor category, but not enough to yield a top safety pick. One of the biggest problems facing all SUVs was an abundance of oncoming glare. The blinding risk was the chief reason the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport performed so poorly against the standard Santa Fe when equipped with HID projector headlights.

“Managing glare can be more challenging for taller vehicles like SUVs and pickups because their headlights are mounted higher than on cars,” Brumbelow says. “Better aim at the factory can minimize glare.”

The IIHS deems its headlight analysis extremely important, since so few consumers are able test drive a vehicle at night before making their purchase. Nighttime visibility is critical to highway safety, as roughly half of all traffic fatalities occur during dawn, dusk, or nighttime. Properly aimed beams are an essential aspect of achieving acceptable illumination, however, the IIHS does remove points for beams that pose a blinding risk to oncoming drivers.

Overall, it suggests that high-intensity discharge (HID) beams paired with projector lenses seem to be the most effective. Still, IIHS warns that the pairing doesn’t necessarily guarantee every vehicle using the setup will achieve a good rating. Well-positioned halogen or high-intensity bulbs can work just as well, depending on their orientation — making the testing of individual models all the more important.

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

57 Comments on “IIHS: Half of All Midsize SUV Headlights Rated Marginal to Poor, Blind Everyone...”


  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “Nighttime visibility is critical to highway safety, as roughly half of all traffic fatalities occur during dawn, dusk, or nighttime.”

    That means the other half occur during daylight – go figure.

    I’m not diminishing the value of good headlights, but I’d bet many, many of those nighttime deaths also involve alcohol.

    • 0 avatar
      Vulpine

      @SCE to AUX: You forget that there are far fewer drivers on the roads after dark as compared to daylight as traffic thins to a trickle during the later (earlier) overnight hours of midnight to about 6am, which means that for about 6 hours of the day, there are almost twice as many accidents.

    • 0 avatar
      derekson

      Generally speaking, isn’t traffic volume much higher during daylight hours? I’d bet fatal incidents per mile driven are way higher are night.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      “I’m not diminishing the value of good headlights, but I’d bet many, many of those nighttime deaths also involve alcohol.”

      I’m also struggling to remember the last time I drove any appreciable distance at night that wasn’t in some urban/suburban setting where other vehicles and streetlights provided more ambient illumination than my own headlights.

      For anyone driving on dark rural roads I can easily see headlights being a highly influential part of the vehicle purchase. For the rest of us, headlights are more marker lights for other drivers to see us than a way of lighting up the road in front.

      • 0 avatar
        Rick T.

        (Raises hand)

      • 0 avatar
        APaGttH

        Going to disagree here. In Soggy, dark Seattle, urban driving in the winter is a horror.

        The rain-slicked streets and intense drizzle conspire to create sharp glare on the road surface, and off your windshield. If oncoming headlights are even remotely angled wrong you’re further bedazzled.

        We have plenty of little Johnny invisible pedestrians here who love to wear black. It’s such an issue the Seattle Times did a story on it, and even the spandex mafia of the Cascade Bike Club wrote a statement in agreement that little Johnny invisible pedestrian is a huge problem here.

        Winter driving here in a word – sucks.

  • avatar
    Imagin

    Amazing manufacturers are coming out with great advancements in lighting (ie. Audi’s Laser headlights) that don’t meet the standards for American roads….

    If they actually progressed the laws to allow for development past what we currently have, maybe they wouldn’t be so poor

    • 0 avatar
      whynot

      That assumes that those advancement in technology would automatically reduce oncoming glare and have better aiming.

      A poorly calibrated and designed fancy laser light show is just as bad as a poorly calibrated and designed halogen light, if not worse.

      A lot of this does not come down to technology, it comes down to laziness. The automakers know customers don’t usually test drive cars at night (or in bad weather when it is raining, etc) and they know there is not a lot of focus on light quality by authorities or consumers (although that is slowly starting to shift), so they are not giving it all that much thought when it comes to designing the lights and ensuring they are properly aimed and calibrated when they leave the factory. They instead design them so they look “cool.”

      • 0 avatar
        caltemus

        Actually laser lights can selectively block the light from glaring oncoming cars. The BMW version of this can even highlight pedestrians and animals.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    FINALLY.

    Where is fedgov with million dollar fines for safety issues of blinding people? I keep hearing evilll corporations need to be regulated and punished because without nanny state agencies they will kill us all. Yet where is NHSTA et al on blinding me everywhere I go at night? Million dollar fines fedgov, you can even kick a percentage to the Green Religion.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      “I keep hearing evilll corporations need to be regulated and punished because without nanny state agencies they will kill us all.”

      Well, the medical waste incineration corporation in the next county was knowingly exceeding their emissions of dioxins and furans to an extent it could be detected in the houses of families living in the surrounding suburban area, and a nearby industrial facility of some national conglomerate is now a superfund site due to a truly withering cocktail of carcinogenic chemicals being released into the soil, water, and air.

      So you’re more right than you may think, though I’m not sure taxpayer-subsidized mitigation of a corporate environmental disaster constitutes “punishment”.

    • 0 avatar
      SunnyvaleCA

      >>> Where is fedgov with million dollar fines for safety issues of blinding people? <<<

      This. Exactly.

      And from the article: “Managing glare can be more challenging for taller vehicles like SUVs and pickups because their headlights are mounted higher than on cars,”

      These vehicles, just like all others, reach all the way to the ground! The headlights could be mounted at normal car levels. If you need some high-mounted lights for special off-road functionality, they could be a second set of lights that aren't used on public roads.

      • 0 avatar
        operagost

        Um… so you want to mount the headlights in the bumper? Or maybe below the bumper, like aftermarket fog lamps?

        • 0 avatar
          bikegoesbaa

          Obviously in order to perform its function the bumper needs to be at the same height as the ones on cars.

          So please bring truck bumpers back down to a rational height; then mount the lights above them.

        • 0 avatar
          Vulpine

          If anyone bothers to look at history, meaning the 60s through the 90s, almost all vehicles had their headlamps positioned just above the bumper while Federal law require the bumpers themselves to be at a fixed height above the ground, no matter the type of vehicle. This height was just below knee height on an average-sized person or about 15″ at the centerline. Now, there may be some exceptions to allow for purpose-built off-road capable machines but even then the laws required that those bumpers be at a fixed height. I would be going off-topic to discuss the effects of having two vehicles meet whose bumpers didn’t match.

          However, by having those bumpers at a fixed height and the headlamps just above the bumpers, it was fairly rare that headlamp glare would rise above the deck lid (boot) of the typical sedan. True, some few vehicles like the Jeep CJ/Wrangler had higher-mounted lamps in order to maintain its traditional appearance but even then, because the body was still relatively low, those lamps didn’t really cause much issue. But now, SUVs and pickup trucks and grown significantly. Vehicles who’s roof line barely stood 6′ tall are now approaching 7′ tall in their 4WD guise while even the 2WD versions are notably taller than their predecessors. Moreover, the idea of stacking high- and low-beam headlamps on these taller vehicles puts those lamps almost squarely in the middle of a smaller vehicle’s back window. Then, depending on brand and model, the low beams may be mounted above the high beam, essentially insuring that any smaller vehicle gets the full effect of those low beam lamps right in the rear-view mirror. And of course, this positioning also means that the effect comes right through the windshield when such vehicles meet.

          Now, this didn’t mean all that much with the older sealed-beam headlamps because they had a fixed output and a diffused glow. It was annoying, but it wasn’t necessarily blinding. Projector beam headlamps on the other hand, use a shutter to block the upper half of the beam in low-beam mode but in a taller vehicle these lamps still end up hitting a leading vehicle with the full intensity of the beam just at or below the bottom of the rear window to where any irregularity in the road would see the beam flash in the rear view mirrors at full power. Again, this would be true on meeting vehicles but in some ways is worse because with smaller vehicles using projector beams, they had to be aimed marginally higher to offer the same range of view those higher-mounted truck lights offer… or the truck lights had to be aimed lower to limit its following beam in the rear-view of the leading vehicle.

          So headlamp design has become a problem because we demand sufficient light to make nighttime driving safer yet the best lights for the job also blind the drivers of any vehicles in front of them. The shutters alone aren’t good enough as any roughness or even just the simple rise and fall of the terrain is enough to plant the full intensity of the headlamps into the receiving driver’s eyes. Lowering the lamps to reduce their effect on leading vehicles would be a huge help and we’ve noticed how some brands have almost comically lowered the headlamps down to bumper level; the Nissan Juke and Jeep Cherokee are two examples of this kind of headlamp placement. But most of their peers still have their headlamps mounted high, just below the hood-line of the vehicle with some of those vehicles utilizing tall grilles meaning a hood line as much as 4′ off the ground.

          The only fix I can suggest is to mandate a maximum height of the headlamps from ground level, no matter the type of vehicle. I’m fully aware that this will affect the appearance of some very classic vehicles known for their grill and headlamp appearance (Jeep Wrangler, specifically) but at the same time, note that even with sealed beam headlamps, there was no requirement for the high beams to be in the same bulb housing as the low and most brands that stacked their lamps put the high beams above the low so that under normal conditions, the low-beam glare never rose above the shoulder line of the other vehicle

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      I suggest if you’re so frustrated by government regulations to move near Hanford, Washington and hope that dear leader gets the budget cuts he wants.

      Your teeth will never be whiter and your garden will produce rainbow-colored 15 pound tomoatoes.

      Or do you only care about regulations as long as YOUR air is clean, and YOUR water is clean, and YOUR ground is clean, and YOUR kids are safe.

  • avatar
    scott25

    The RDX and MDX are the currently vehicles I am most frequently blinded by yet they earn an acceptable rating. I guess that means they’re bright enough to see down the road for the driver at least.

    • 0 avatar
      gomez

      I think the last-gen F-150 is the worst. I swear 1 out of every 4 I see has at least one headlight mis-aimed.

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      Tesla model S is horrific. There are several in my neighborhood – it’s like staring into the feckin’ sun.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        Just Model S, or any similar-sized vehicle with projector-beam headlamps? I detect a hint of prejudice here that would be better targeted to the real cause of the problem and not just one brand.

        One thing I’ll note is that some people have a condition called ‘Night Blindness’. Their eyes work fine under full daylight but can’t adjust to rapidly-changing light conditions such as you get driving under streetlamps with headlights on. These people have a habit of running with their high beams on regardless of the effect on facing traffic.

        Or, maybe your community is on a hill where there is a constant sloping curve to the road, keeping you just below the shutter angle of those projector-beam lamps.

        Or, maybe you’re driving a go-kart of a car where your hood is below their headlamp level.

        There could be many reasons for why you’re getting blinded that have nothing to do with the brand of the car carrying those blinding lights.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    At least part of the issue with 90% of the vehicles faring poorly have to do with the lights simply being mounted high on the body and not down closer to or within the bumper. This has been an issue for a long time. There’s a reason most 18-wheelers have their headlights down just above the bumper and not high up beside the grill.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    The 4Runner doesn’t need strong headlights for dark mountain roads because it doesn’t corner quickly enough to suddenly run up on anything.

    I’ll bet the IIHS eggheads didn’t factor *that* into their metrics.

  • avatar
    Car Ramrod

    Amazing that things like this get harped on when discussing specs from the factory, but the aftermarket has no enforced standards anywhere I’ve lived. I’ve never seen a jacked up pickup pulled over for lights that were never adjusted down and are blinding everybody on road, or a car puled over for non-DOT spec headlight colors. Police enforcement on this stuff is laughable.

    On a related note, I remember all the ads about lower bumpers and building SUVs that were more “crash compatible” with sedans 20 years ago, but apparently a truck with a 6 inch plus lift kit is still legal on public roads. I guess less people are decapitated by rednecks in lifted trucks than are run over by cars without backup cameras.

    • 0 avatar
      KevinC

      There’s a jackass in the VW forums selling LED “upgrades” for halogen headlights, and they’re pure garbage. Some guy just bought their latest bulbs (there always seems to be a “new and improved” version of aftermarket crappy lighting) and wrote a long review, including pictures, and openly admitted to blinding oncoming drivers, but “only on inclines” or some such excuse. Also the beam pattern was scattered all over the place. And people actually buy this crap, and one of the 2 boards allows him to be a paying sponsor and as such is allowed to shill his products openly. It’s shameful and infuriates me.

      We have a new Mazda3 with new-for-17 bi-LED adaptive lighting. They are nothing short of incredible, with very precise and uniform lighting, and a very sharp cutoff. The new facelifted Golfs get LED lights this fall. This aftermarket garbage needs to get cracked down on and eliminated. It’s dangerous as hell.

    • 0 avatar
      Zipster

      Don’t expect the cops to do anything as discretionary as pulling cowboys over for illegal lights. They are resistant even to enforcing the law when people are driving in near darkness without lights.

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      I’ve intentionally given the high beams to lifted vehicles blinding me with their misaimed low beams, in the hope they retaliate. When they turn on their high beams they are typically pointed above me, and I can see again.

  • avatar
    Car Guy

    All the more reason the DOT needs to change their outdated lighting standards and allow adaptive lighting.

    • 0 avatar

      “All the more reason the DOT needs to change their outdated lighting standards and allow removable bulb Euro style lighting.”

      Sadly, some things don’t change. We only got the removable bulb lighting when the OE wanted to make cars more aero…since then, the light engineers have been stuck with whatever tiny corner of the car the designers allow them to have, with the resultant optical disasters…unless the OE wants to pay for the full HID or at least the shutter and lens style, things aren’t much better than the four square sealed beam setup, the single worst standard ever allowed. Even now, a lot of cars “require” you to step up to the better lighting package offered, and it always lives with six other options….

      I drive a lot at night, on un lit parkways and two lane roads. Now that all the cars have HID, I don’t have something aftermarket grafted to the front fo the car…but for a long time, there was a set of driving lights.

  • avatar
    gomez

    Is there a link in this story to the IIHS data?

  • avatar
    stingray65

    The old sealed beam headlights were routinely criticized for poor illumination, but at least they only cost about $2 to replace when broken in an easy DIY operation. It seems many of the current lights are little better, but break one and it costs hundreds of dollars to replace, and even replacing a burned out bulb is often a multi-hour job best left to the dealership. Is that really progress?

    • 0 avatar

      No, the good thing about the sealed beam was the way they came off the car, and after being tossed a long, long distance (longer than their high beams, usually) you could easily replace them with Hella, Bosch or Cibie H4 lamps. Bonus points for that extra relay on the high beam side and a 55/100 bulb.

      The second gen MDX has great lights…HID low plus Halogen highs for the full four light setup.

      What’s up with wimpy fog lights ? I have fogs in the Caddy and the Acura that are almost a waste of electric, filling in a tiny area just behind the low beam…..at least the BMW lamps made a noticeable difference.

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      I bought a minty 1990 Ford Probe LX this past weekend to add to my growing malaise era collection.

      I drove it at night first day I had it and I’m pretty darn surprised on how good the seal beamed popup headlights are. Better than a number of modern vehicles I’ve driven through the years.

  • avatar
    haroldhill

    The popular sharp upper edge to the modern beam projection becomes a problem for others when the vehicle approaches oncoming traffic while going up a slight rise in the road. Blinded becomes seriously blinded. I’ve never seen this addressed, and it’s the worst of the problems. There’s a crosswalk near me that’s located at the top of a gentle rise, and at night I know that traffic in both directions would be absolutely unable to see a pedestrian anywhere in that crosswalk.

  • avatar
    redapple

    I know an officer who loves pulling over drivers with high beams on (or funny guys that put high beam lamps in the low beam lamp position (lots of class 8 trucks do this)).
    You can tell a bulb is on high, if he is behind you, if you see a clear shadow of your head. (Shielded bulb vs. unshielded)

  • avatar
    kkop

    Where I live, there are many, many Jeeps. Jeeps must have terrible lighting, because 90% seem to have replaced OEM lights with aftermarket ones. Which, without exception, all blind oncoming traffic.

    Especially when riding my motorcycle, that got pretty dangerous. Since I can’t make them change their lighting setup, I did the next best thing: mounted two 6000 lumens aux light on my bike to ‘alert’ them with. I’m still blinded, but at least I can return the favor now.

  • avatar
    newenthusiast

    So, if the IIHS’ biggest suggestion is simply proper aim when a car comes off the line, it should be an easy fix.

    Which leads to the question: why would the manufacturer NOT make that part of the process before delivery to a dealer? Is that what IIHS is suggesting? (I’m assuming they are testing factory spec vehicles, not privately-owned ones that may have aftermarket modifications done)

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    A lot of headlights nowadays are crap. They seem to have been designed by stylists, not lighting engineers. The only thing good about sealed beams was that they were all in standard sizes, so you could yank them out and replace them with good quality halogens, like Cibie’ and Hella. Which were usually, of course, you guessed it – illegal under DOT regulations.

    • 0 avatar
      operagost

      There are standard sizes now, just more of them. Back in the bad old days, it was two sizes.

    • 0 avatar
      OliverTwist78

      Those Cibie and Hella headlamps aren’t illegal under US DOT regulations per se since the early 1990s for the four-wheeled vehicles. They have been legal for the motorcycles for many decades.

      It’s down to the labelling of bulbs. H4 are supposed to be labelled as HB2 or 9003 and be built to the ‘tighter tolerance’ than ECE. Visually, there’s no difference between H4, HB2, or 9003 other than the label.

      Obviously, US DOT regulations need to go because they are driven by the political and corporate motivations than by the engineers who care about automotive safety regulations. While ECE WP.29 regulations are not perfect, they are more or less established by engineers.

      Why didn’t the manufacturers adopt Cibie and Hella headlamps in the first place? It’s down to the cost and US DOT regulations that allow the much shitty headlamps to be used.

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    Also, some of the aftermarket crap out there – *red* halo lights on the front of Camaros? Seriously?

  • avatar
    bikegoesbaa

    I’m probably missing something, but I’ve found the lights on all modern cars to be fully satisfactory.

    I only really need them to do 3 things:
    1) Advertise my presence to other road users
    2) Illuminate the road so I don’t drive off of it
    3) Illuminate objects in the road so I don’t hit them

    1) Is basically a given, as it can be fulfilled by battery powered blinking lights, flashlights, or even glow sticks

    2) doesn’t take much, as the road is usually in a predictable place and fortunately located very near to the front of my car

    3) is trickier, but most of the things I’m worried about hitting are fairly large and often themselves illuminated or in possession of reflective surfaces.

    I’ve never had a modern car that couldn’t do a good job of all 3.

    Is there any evidence to indicate that HIDs or other top-spec lighting materially impact the crash rate vs cars equipped with basic krap-e-lights?

  • avatar
    Higheriq

    The IIHS is again trying to justify their existence.

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      Yes, because they certainly have had zero impact as an agency in anything they’ve done to improve vehicle safety.

      A complete waste of insurance premium money, that’s why those quants at the insurance companies thought it was a good idea to fund the IIHS in the first place. To waste money.

      • 0 avatar

        Having gone against IIHS nonsense for many years as an activist with the National Motorist Assn…back in the 55 mph NMSL days….

        Any IIHS traffic safety study is a write conclusion first, then cherry pick stats. They exist to push for laws that would blow back on a corporate entity…GEICO got heat when they saved LTI and put lasers in the hands of cops nationwide…IIHS can do this but without making Flo look even worse. When someone shows up pushing for “safety cameras” or against allowing 70 mph on some trackless six lane interstate, it will be spouting IIHS nonsense from an IIHS report….like it was a legit source.

        They then put these fake studies into every professional journal they can find…and bootstrap it back as…the IIHS study as featured in Traffic Safety Analyzed Monthly (a made up title)….

        Since we always used legit highway engineering as a reply-we were always amazed to see the credibility IIHS nonsense had in the face of actual professional studies and research.

        IIHS does a very limited good-tougher crash standards than the US govt will do…and car makers have to pay attention. The problems arise when the TV news stations take the IIHS crash test porn and run it…when IIHS says nice things about Scamera enforcement or stupidly low speed limits, then the TV news has them already as an easy source and don’t question them in the way that they should.

        Cherry picked data…printed on Glossy paper…because IIHS glosses over the facts…..

        • 0 avatar
          Vulpine

          Engineers sometimes have a bad habit of making things work but ignoring the consequences of their designs. Professional studies using engineers CAN (I won’t say ‘will’) ignore the practical drawbacks of what is otherwise a good design.

          How many of these automotive designers actually bother to test the effects of their designs in their intended use? It used to be that nothing would go out without at least some practical testing in real-world conditions.

  • avatar
    White Shadow

    I have a 2017 Grand Cherokee with the HID Xenons and a 2016 Audi with the HID Xenons. The Jeep headlights are absolute garbage when compared to the Audi. The difference is more than I had thought possible when comparing two vehicles that both have HID Xenon projector lighting. If the Grand Cherokee has “acceptable” headlights, I’d love to see how bad the other midsize SUVs are in comparison.

    • 0 avatar
      OliverTwist78

      You might want to try the export headlamps as they are often better than the US headlamps due to the massive difference between the US DOT and UNECE (de facto international regulations) lighting regulations.

    • 0 avatar
      hreardon

      White Shadow –

      Funny you should say this. We just added a ’17 JGC Overland with the HID Xenons that replaced a ’15 JGC Altitude without them. No pun intended, night and day improvement.

      BUT to your point: My ’15 GTI Autobahn with the adaptive headlights and cornering lamps completely obliterates the Jeep. My old ’06 A3 with HID Xenons was better than the Jeep, too.

      The older I get, the more I’m willing to pay for good lighting – which is likely one of the reasons so many manufacturers make the HID Xenons an upgrade.

  • avatar
    turf3

    Cars do not need brighter low beams. Period. Sealed beams were plenty bright enough for low beam (and I mean real sealed beams, not sealed halogen units).

    What has happened is a war of escalation – you can’t see because there’s too much glare? Obviously, the solution is to put brighter lights on the car! Now that everyone has brighter lights on the car, you still can’t see because there’s too much glare? Obviously, the solution is to put even brighter lights on the car! Now we can’t see traffic lights, so let’s make all of those brighter. Now there’s too much glare to see, so the solution is… Obviously, the solution is to put even more super brighter headlights on the car!

    Can any of you who keep harping on how even today’s lights need to be brighter, comprehend how the cycle described above might lead to unintended consequences, ie., nobody can see squat?

    I recommend you go out into the woods on a moonless night. Try, just try, to find your way using a flashlight. Then, turn the damn flashlight off, let your eyes adjust, and notice how much better you can see when everything is about the same level of brightness.

    When every car is using what are essentially airport landing lights, how the he!! do you think drivers will be able to see things like, oh, I don’t know, pedestrians?

  • avatar
    jaybread

    Maybe someone can enlighten me a little…
    I keep hearing that both BMW and Porsche (and maybe all euro cars) sold in the USA have de-tuned high beams.
    I hear that if I can find someone to load the euro software, my high beams will be significantly brighter?

    Apparently USDOT rules only allow a certain level of intensity?
    Why would euro rules allow more people to be blinded by high beams?

Read all comments

Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • mcs: ” live in a hilly snowy place and yes awd makes a huge difference,” I’m in the same situation....
  • NormSV650: Still falls short of the Accord when they share the sane 2.0T and again with single turbo v6 in the...
  • Tele Vision: @here4aSammich Mechanic on speed dial?! I do all of my own wrenching. It’s easy and informative....
  • Shockrave Flash Has Crashed: I have a CX-30 and the AWD makes it more fun to drive than the Mazda 3 it replaced. I...
  • beachy: So, about this AWD system. Out West, where some state highways are dirt roads and other roads often cross...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Who We Are

  • Adam Tonge
  • Bozi Tatarevic
  • Corey Lewis
  • Mark Baruth
  • Ronnie Schreiber