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Group awards made-in-Chattanooga VW Atlas '2017 Top Safety Pick' award

To qualify for the 2017 Top Safety Pick award, a vehicle must have good ratings in all five crashworthiness tests — small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraints. (Image: IIHS video)

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) says it is giving the new Volkswagen SUV, the Atlas, which is made in Chattanooga, its "2017 Top Safety Pick" award.

To qualify for the 2017 Top Safety Pick award, a vehicle must have good ratings in all five crashworthiness tests — small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraints. It also must have an available front crash prevention rating that earns an advanced or superior rating.

The group posted video of Atlas crash tests on its website:

The IIHS says the Atlas has an optional front crash prevention system that earns a superior rating.

In the 12 mph IIHS track test, the IIHS says the vehicle avoided a collision. In the 25 mph test, it says the impact speed was reduced by 17 mph. The system also has a forward collision warning component that meets National Highway Traffic Safety Administration criteria.

But the IIHS says the Atlas misses the Top Safety Pick designation because its available headlights are rated marginal and poor. Good or acceptable headlights are required for the higher award.

Related: Calvin Sneed test-drives the Atlas

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