Compacts Test Safer

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The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says smaller and mid-size cars are earning higher marks than in the past.

It tested the 2002 model Suzuki Aerio, Mini Cooper and Audi A4, along with the 2003 model Toyota Corolla and Honda accord. All five earned top marks and a "Best Pick" rating.

The Institute tests cars by running the driver's side front end into a barrier at 40-miles-per-hour, then rates them based on how the dummies inside fared.