Last Thursday morning in rural northern Virginia, a silver 2015 Ford F-150 SuperCab 4x2 slammed violently into a concrete abutment at 40 mph.
It was a loud and unusual crash. But it was no accident.
Rather, it was an unprecedented follow-up crash test of a lower-volume pickup model by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
According to IIHS, the test was done specifically because Automotive News alerted it to extra safety equipment that Ford installed on the top-selling SuperCrew model -- the single model that IIHS normally tests -- but not on its Regular Cab or SuperCab F-150s. Other pickup makers will be subject to new tests on their lower-volume models starting next year, an IIHS spokesman said.