Car Safety Ratings 2013...
Top 10 Safest Cars Lists.

Car Safety Ratings are a major factor when it comes to buying a new car.

In fact, a survey in January 2011 found that 65 percent of new car buyers listed "Safety" among their top three priorities:

  • "Safety" (65%), ahead of... car rating
  • "Quality" (57%),
  • "Value" (51%),
  • "Performance" (47%),
  • "Environmentally Friendly" (28%),
  • "Design/Style" (25%),
  • "Technology/Innovation" (17%).

Women rated car safety far more important than men (74% versus 56% for men), while men were more worried about value than women (54% versus 47%).

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Car Safety Ratings.

New Car Safety Ratings are released by the likes of EuroNCAP (Europe New Car Assessment Programme), JapanNCAP, AustraliaNCAP, and America's IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety) and NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration).

And further information is collected by consumer groups like, insurance groups like, and various other sources like

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How Cars Earn Their Stars.

1. Crash Performance Tests are carried out on vehicles with wired "dummies" to see how well passengers are protected in simulated crash situations. Tests include;

  • Frontal Crash Tests,
  • Side-Impact Tests,
  • Rear-End Collision Tests,
  • Roll-Over Protection Ratings.

2. Active Safety Features which are being built into more vehicles that help motorists avoid a collision or accident, such as;

  • ESC (Electronic Stability Control) that automatically makes throttle and brake adjustments to help avoid wheel slippage and loss of control, especially in emergency situations. The IIHS believes this feature has helped reduce the risk of fatal crashes by 33%, and of single vehicle roll-over by 73%.
  • Lane Deviation Technology that warns distracted drivers against veering into adjacent lanes (which the NTSC says causes up to 17% of all vehicle crashes).
  • Blind-Spot Alert technology using cameras and sensors to warn of unseen vehicles or pedestrians.
  • AEB (Autonomous Emergency Braking) systems to prevent impact with vehicle or human.
  • Collision Avoidance Sensors that give visual and audible alarms in dangerous situations and can even intervene in braking, throttle and steering systems to minimize injury and damage to vehicle passengers and pedestrians.

And all the while, more advanced technology is creeping into top-of-the-range vehicles such as infra-red "Night Vision" displays that allow a motorist to better see in the dark; high intensity head-lights that "see around corners"; and video systems that provide drivers with a 360-degree view.

Eventually, these advanced technologies will filter down to the mass market segment making motor vehicles more and more safe.

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Euro NCAP Top 10 Safest Cars 2013-12.

Established in 1997, Euro NCAP is made up of seven European Governments as well as consumer and motoring organisations in every European country.

It organizes crash-tests and provides motoring consumers with a realistic and independent assessment of the car safety ratings of some of the most popular cars sold in Europe.

  1. Volvo V40... small family car category.
  2. BMW 5 Series... luxury saloon car.
  3. Opel/Vauxhall Mokka... small family car.
  4. Ford Kuga... small off-road 4x4.
  5. BMX 3 Series... large family car.
  6. Hyundai Sante Fe... large off-road 4x4.
  7. Audi A3... small family car.
  8. Renault Clio... supermini.
  9. Subaru Forester...small off-road 4x4.
  10. Mitsubishi Outlander... small off-road 4x4.

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IIHS Top Safety Pick + Awards for 2013.

The U.S. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety 2013 car safety ratings report has assigned its highest Top Safety Pick+ awards to vehicles that score highly in occupant protection in 4 of 5 evaluations, and are acceptable in the fifth.

Some of the criteria in assessing these car safety ratings are "moderate overlap frontal test, side impact, rollover and rear tests".

  • Small cars...Dodge Dart, Ford Focus, Honda Civic, Hyundai Elantra, Toyota Scion tC.

  • Midsize moderately priced cars... Chrysler 2000, Dodge Avenger, Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Kia Optima, Mazda 6, Nissan Altima, Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Suzuki Kizashi, Volkswagen Passat.

  • Midsize luxury cars... Honda Acura TL, Lincoln MKZ, Volvo S60.

  • Midsize luxury SUVs... Volvo XC60.

So who's the dummy?...

... great Car Safety Ratings advert from Finland.

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Top 10 Safest Cars for 2012.

Writing in authoritative, and the automotive journalist and author Jim Gorzelany has come up with this list:

*NB. Due to the limited Car Safety Ratings testing of low-volume, top-end models this list is only for vehicles under U.S.$50,000.

  1. Audi A6... full-size luxury sedan.
  2. Audi Q5... midsize German All Wheel Drive.
  3. BMW 5 Series... midsize luxury sedan.
  4. Infiniti EX 35... Japanese crossover SUV.
  5. Infinity M37/M56... flagship sedan
  6. Mercedes Benz E-Class... German luxury sedan.
  7. Mercedes Benz M-Class... luxury midsize SUV.
  8. Volvo S60... Volvo regains its mojo.
  9. Volvo S80... Swedish trail blazer in car safety.
  10. Volvo XC60... midsize crossover SUV.

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Forbes Top 10 Safest Small Cars 2012.

In another Forbes article automotive journalist and author Jim Gorzelany points out that "The laws of physics always favor a larger car in a collision... a smaller and lighter vehicle will tend to fare worse in a crash than will a larger and heavier model".

The small vehicles in this list are packed with the latest safety features to make them as safe as possible, but the onus is still on the driver and passengers to drive carefully, always be alert, and remember... if you're unlucky enough to crash into something a lot bigger than you are... you'll most likely still come off second best.

  1. Audi A3... latest German technology.
  2. Buick Verano... incorporates 10 airbags.
  3. Chevrolet Cruze... Onstar crash notification system.
  4. Chevrolet Sonic... 10 airbags & Onstar.
  5. Chevrolet Volt... "green" gas/electric powered.
  6. Lexus CT 200h... Pre-Collision response System.
  7. Mazda3... Blind Spot Monitor & Active Headlights.
  8. Scion tC... Toyota technology.
  9. Subaru Impreza... all wheel drive/active headrests.
  10. Toyota Prius... "Green" gas/electric hybrid.

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IIHS Top 10 Safest Cars 2011.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's report of June 9, 2011 highlighted the great contribution ESC (Electronic Stability Control) had made to motor safety, especially for SUVs (sport utility vehicles).

The IIHS car safety ratings report states "In the past, the top-heavy vehicles frequently rolled over, giving some of the highest driver death rates...
But drivers of today's SUVs are among the least likely to die in a crash... due largely to the widespread availability of ESC. With the propensity to roll over reduced, SUVs are on balance safer than cars because their bigger size and weight provide greater protection in a crash".

  1. Audi A6... large luxury sedan.
  2. Mercedes Benz E-Class... large luxury sedan.
  3. Toyota Sienna...very large minivan.
  4. Ford Edge... midsize 4WD SUV.
  5. Nissan Armada... large 4WD SUV.
  6. Land Rover Range Rover Sport... large 4WD SUV.
  7. Land Rover LR3... large 4WD SUV.
  8. Honda CR-V... small 4WD SUV.
  9. Jeep Grand Cherokee... midsize 4WD SUV.
  10. Acura MDX... midsize 4WD SUV.
* IIHS Car Safety Ratings based on the Lowest Rates of Driver Deaths (per million registered vehicle years).

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