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The safest cars according to Euro NCAP

Experts at Euro NCAP rate cars against its five-star safety rating system – the industry benchmark for vehicle safety. The organisation updated its testing regime in 2016, making it tougher than ever to get that coveted five-star rating.

Driverless vehicle technology is finding its way into many modern cars via collision-avoidance features and blind-spot monitoring. The new testing format takes this into consideration so you can see how well a car will protect you before you’ve even had a crash.

A number of changes to the way crash testing is carried out and monitored have resulted in the thresholds for achieving three-, four- and five-star ratings have all been raised. This means a four-star-rated car in 2016 or 2017 might be safer than a five-star one from 2014 or 2015.

Below is a list of the safest new cars on sale. If any of these cars take your fancy, put them in our car configurator to see how much carwow could help you save.

List of safest cars on sale

Superminis and city cars

The Honda Jazz is still one of the safest cars on sale, joined by the new VW Polo and SEAT Ibiza. They offer very impressive adult safety provision for a variety of drivers in numerous seating positions. Maximum points were scored in side barrier impact tests which, coupled with an autonomous emergency braking system and lane-departure warning granted the three exceptional five-star ratings.

Supermini and city car results
Car Star rating Adult safety Child safety Pedestrian safety Safety assistance
Citroen C1 (2014) 4/5 80% 80% 62% 56%
Citroen C3 (2017) 4/5 88% 83% 59% 58%
DS 3 (2017) 3/5 69% 37% 55% 29%
Fiat 500 (2017) 3/5 66% 49% 53% 27%
Fiat Panda Cross (2015) 3/5 70% 77% 50% 46%
Ford Fiesta (2017) 5/5 87% 84% 64% 60%
Ford Ka+ (2017) 3/5 73% 61% 57% 29%
Honda Jazz (2015) 5/5 93% 85% 73% 71%
Hyundai i10 (2014) 4/5 79% 80% 71% 56%
Hyundai i20 (2015) 4/5 85% 73% 79% 64%
Kia Picanto – safety pack (2017) 4/5 87% 64% 54% 47%
Mazda 2 (2015) 4/5 86% 78% 84% 64%
Mini 3-door (2014) 4/5 79% 73% 66% 56%
Nissan Micra – safety pack (2017) 5/5 91% 79% 79% 72%
Peugeot 108 (2014) 4/5 80% 80% 62% 56%
Peugeot 208 (2012) 5/5 88% 78% 61% 83%
Renault Twingo (2014) 4/5 78% 81% 68% 56%
Renault Clio (2013) 5/5 88% 77% 72% 70%
SEAT Ibiza (2017) 5/5 95% 77% 76% 60%
Skoda Fabia (2014) 5/5 81% 81% 69% 69%
Smart ForFour (2014) 4/5 78% 77% 65% 56%
Smart ForTwo (2014) 4/5 82% 80% 56% 56%
Suzuki Baleno – safety pack (2016) 4/5 85% 73% 65% 43%
Suzuki Celerio (2014) 3/5 61% 74% 68% 38%
Suzuki Ignis – safety pack (2016) 5/5 87% 79% 77% 60%
Suzuki Swift – safety pack (2017) 4/5 88% 75% 69% 44%
Toyota Aygo (2014) 4/5 80% 80% 62% 56%
Toyota Yaris (2017) 5/5 83% 80% 63% 57%
Vauxhall Corsa (2014) 4/5 79% 77% 71% 56%
Vauxhall Viva (2015) 4/5 74% 72% 68% 64%
VW Polo (2017) 5/5 96% 85% 76% 59%

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Small family cars

The SEAT Arona is one of the safest cars on sale this year, with not only a fantastic adult safety score, but great child and pedestrian safety too. The Kia Niro Hybrid, with the optional safety pack installed, received an excellent five-star safety rating in the latest 2016 round of tests. Not only did the Niro score maximum points for child protection in side impacts but its onboard safety systems were highly praised for their effectiveness, too.

Small family car results
Car Star rating Adult safety Child safety Pedestrian safety Safety assistance
Alfa Romeo Giulietta (2017) 3/5 72% 56% 59% 25%
Audi A3 Sportback e-tron (2014) 5/5 82% 78% 66% 68%
BMW i3 (2015) 4/5 86% 81% 57% 55%
Citroen C4 Cactus (2014) 4/5 82% 79% 80% 56%
Dacia Logan MCV (2014) 3/5 57% 75% 55% 38%
Fiat Tipo (2016) 4/5 82% 60% 62% 57%
Fiat Punto (2017) 0/5 (Zero) 51% 43% 52% 0%
Honda Civic – reassessment (2017) 5/5 92% 75% 75% 88%
Hyundai i30 (2017) 5/5 88% 84% 64% 68%
Hyundai Ioniq (2016) 5/5 91% 80% 70% 82%
Infiniti Q30 (2015) 5/5 84% 86% 91% 81%
Kia Niro – safety pack (2016) 5/5 91% 80% 70% 81%
Kia Rio – safety pack (2017) 5/5 93% 84% 71% 59%
Mazda 3 (2013) 5/5 93% 86% 65% 81%
Renault Megane (2015) 5/5 88% 87% 71% 71%
Subaru Impreza (2017) 5/5 94% 89% 82% 68%
Subaru Levorg (2016) 5/5 92% 83% 75% 68%
Vauxhall Astra (2015) 5/5 86% 84% 83% 75%

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Large family cars and executive cars

Volvo has shot to the top of the large family car class, locking out first and second places in the safety stakes with its new S90 saloon and V90 estate. These handsome Swedish offerings come equipped with an impressive array of active safety kit as standard including an autonomous braking system that scored full points across all test scenarios. Both child and adult occupant protection were equally impressive for both cars, too – in this class, only the Alfa Romeo Giulia offered a greater degree of protection across these two categories.

Large family car results
Car Star rating Adult safety Child safety Pedestrian safety Safety assistance
Alfa Romeo Giulia (2016) 5/5 98% 81% 69% 60%
Audi A4 (2015) 5/5 90% 87% 75% 75%
Audi A6 (2011) 5/5 91% 83% 41% 86%
BMW 5 Series (2017) 5/5 91% 85% 81% 59%
BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo (2017) 5/5 86% 85% 81% 59%
Ford Mondeo (2014) 5/5 86% 82% 66% 66%
Infiniti Q50 (2013) 5/5 86% 85% 67% 81%
Jaguar XE (2015) 5/5 92% 82% 81% 82%
Jaguar XF (2015) 5/5 92% 84% 80% 83%
Kia Optima (2015) 5/5 89% 86% 67% 71%
Kia Stinger GT (2017) 5/5 93% 81% 78% 82%
Maserati Ghibli (2013) 5/5 95% 79% 74% 81%
Mercedes C-Class (2014) 5/5 92% 84% 77% 70%
Mercedes E-Class (2016) 5/5 95% 90% 77% 62%
Skoda Superb (2015) 5/5 86% 86% 71% 76%
Subaru Outback (2014) 5/5 85% 87% 70% 73%
Tesla Model S (2014) 5/5 82% 77% 66% 71%
Toyota Avensis (2014) 5/5 93% 85% 78% 81%
Toyota Prius (2016) 5/5 92% 82% 77% 85%
Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport (2017) 5/5 93% 85% 78% 69%
VW Arteon (2017) 5/5 66% 85% 85% 82%
VW Passat (2014) 5/5 85% 87% 66% 76%
Volvo S90/ V90 (2017) 5/5 95% 80% 76% 93%

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Small MPVs

The new Renault Scenic tops the small MPV table with an impressive five-star rating. It scored maximum points for side barrier impacts and was able to shield its occupants from the severe effects of whiplash in a heavy rear-end collision. The Scenic’s ability to protect drivers and passengers of varying sizes was also noted, as was the good performance of its autonomous braking system.

Ford C-Max/ Grand C-Max (2017)3/576%60%50%29%

Small MPV results
Car Star rating Adult safety Child safety Pedestrian safety Safety assistance
BMW 2 Series Active Tourer (2014) 5/5 88% 77% 72% 70%
Citroen C3 Aircross (2017) 5/5 85% 82% 64% 60%
Ford B-Max (2012) 5/5 92% 84% 67% 71%
Fiat 500X (2015) 4/5 86% 85% 74% 64%
Honda HR-V (2015) 5/5 86% 79% 72% 71%
Kia Soul (2014) 4/5 75% 82% 59% 56%
Kia Soul EV (2014) 4/5 84% 82% 59% 56%
Mini Countryman (2017) 5/5 90% 80% 64% 51%
Renault Scenic (2015) 5/5 90% 82% 67% 59%
Vauxhall Crossland X (2017) 5/5 85% 84% 62% 57%
VW Touran (2015) 5/5 88% 89% 71% 76%
VW Golf SV (2014) 5/5 87% 85% 62% 73%

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Large MPVs

The latest large MPVs have been tested by Euro NCAP and Ford’s S-Max and Galaxy have all come away with the top honours. Family buyers arguably care more about safety than any other group so it makes sense that manufacturers focus on this issue.

Large MPV results
Car Star rating Adult safety Child safety Pedestrian safety Safety assistance
Ford Galaxy (2015) 5/5 87% 87% 79% 71%
Ford S-Max (2015) 5/5 87% 87% 79% 71%
SEAT Alhambra (2010) 5/5 96% 80% 46% 71%
VW Sharan (2010) 5/5 96% 80% 46% 71%

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Small SUVs

The Volkswagen Tiguan performed extremely well in the 2016 Euro NCAP tests, narrowly edging ahead of its SEAT Ateca sibling. Not only did it score impressive 96 and 84 per cent adult and child occupant protection scores respectively, but active systems, including a bonnet that rises up to protect pedestrians from hitting solid engine parts in a collision, helped it to score highly in both pedestrian and safety assistance categories. VW’s new T-Roc is one of the safest small SUVs on sale in 2017, and the upcoming Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross – on sale in January 2018 – has an excellent safety score too.

Small SUV results
Car Star rating Adult safety Child safety Pedestrian safety Safety assistance
Audi Q2 (2016) 5/5 93% 86% 70% 60%
BMW X1 (2015) 5/5 90% 87% 74% 77%
Dacia Duster (2017) 3/5 71% 66% 56% 37%
Hyundai Kona (2017) 5/5 87% 85% 62% 60%
Hyundai Tucson (2015) 5/5 86% 85% 71% 71%
Jaguar E-Pace (2017) 5/5 86% 87% 77% 72%
Jeep Renegade (2014) 5/5 87% 85% 65% 74%
Kia Sportage (2105) 5/5 90% 83% 66% 71%
Kia Stonic – safety pack (2017) 5/5 93% 84% 71% 59%
Land Rover Discovery Sport (2014) 5/5 93% 83% 69% 82%
Lexus NX (2014) 5/5 82% 82% 69% 71%
Mazda CX-3 (2015) 4/5 85% 79% 84% 64%
Mazda CX-5 (2017) 5/5 95% 80% 78% 59%
Mercedes GLA (2014) 5/5 96% 88% 67% 70%
Mercedes GLC (2015) 5/5 95% 89% 82% 71%
MG ZS (2017) 3/5 71% 51% 59% 29%
Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross (2017) 5/5 97% 78% 80% 71%
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (2013) 5/5 88% 84% 64% 81%
Nissan Qashqai (2014) 5/5 88% 83% 69% 79%
Nissan X-Trail (2014) 5/5 86% 83% 75% 75%
Peugeot 2008 (2013) 5/5 88% 77% 72% 70%
Peugeot 3008 (2016) 5/5 86% 85% 67% 58%
Porsche Macan (2014) 5/5 88% 87% 60% 66%
Range Rover Evoque (2011) 5/5 86% 75% 41% 86%
Range Rover Velar (2017) 5/5 93% 85% 74% 72%
Renault Captur (2013) 5/5 88% 80% 66% 85%
Renault Kadjar (2015) 5/5 89% 81% 74% 71%
SEAT Arona (2017) 5/5 95% 80% 77% 60%
SEAT Ateca (2016) 5/5 93% 84% 71% 60%
Skoda Karoq (2017) 5/5 93% 79% 73% 58%
SsangYong Tivoli – safety pack (2016) 4/5 82% 62% 65% 43%
SsangYong XLV – safety pack (2016) 4/5 82% 62% 65% 43%
Subaru XV (2017) 5/5 94% 89% 84% 68%
Suzuki Vitara (2015) 4/5 85% 79% 84% 64%
Toyota C-HR (2017) 5/5 95% 77% 76% 78%
Toyota RAV4 (2013) 5/5 89% 82% 66% 66%
Vauxhall Grandland X (2017) 5/5 84% 87% 63% 60%
VW T-Roc (2017) 5/5 96% 87% 79% 71%
VW Tiguan (2016) 5/5 96% 84% 72% 68%

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Large SUVs

The Volvo XC90 scored a perfect 100 per cent in the safety assistance category, a feat not matched by any car in any segment. In side impact tests, all major areas were well protected and the Volvo was awarded maximum points. The standard autonomous braking system, which is able to recognise pedestrians and cyclists as well as cars, was highly praised.

Large SUV results
Car Star rating Adult safety Child safety Pedestrian safety Safety assistance
Alfa Romeo Stelvio (2017) 5/5 97% 84% 71% 60%
Audi Q5 (2017) 5/5 93% 86% 73% 58%
Audi Q7 (2015) 5/5 94% 88% 70% 76%
BMW X3 (2017) 5/5 93% 84% 70% 58%
DS 7 Crossback (2017) 5/5 91% 87% 73% 76%
Ford Edge (2016) 5/5 85% 76% 67% 89%
Hyundai Santa Fe (2012) 5/5 96% 89% 71% 86%
Jaguar F-Pace (2017) 5/5 93% 85% 80% 72%
Kia Sorento (2014) 5/5 90% 83% 67% 71%
Land Rover Discovery (2017) 5/5 90% 80% 75% 73%
Lexus RX (2015) 5/5 91% 82% 79% 77%
Porsche Cayenne (2017) 5/5 95% 80% 73% 62%
Renault Koleos (2017) 5/5 90% 79% 62% 75%
Skoda Kodiaq (2017) 5/5 92% 77% 71% 54%
Volvo XC60 (2017) 5/5 98% 87% 76% 95%
Volvo XC90 (2015) 5/5 97% 87% 72% 100%

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Roadsters and sports cars

The Audi TT may have only achieved a four-star rating, but it reflects just how stringent the 2015 testing regime became. In the side barrier test, the Audi scored maximum points, with good protection being offered for all parts of the body. It also provided good protection to all parts of the dummy in the more severe side pole impact tests, where it scored full points. Rivals will have to be exceptionally safe to beat this score.

Roadster and sports car results
Car Star rating Adult safety Child safety Pedestrian safety Safety assistance
Audi TT (2015) 4/5 81% 68% 82% 64%
Ford Mustang – reassessment (2017) 3/5 72% 32% 78% 61%
Mazda MX-5 (2015) 4/5 84% 80% 93% 64%

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Cars as safe as houses

If any of the models on this list have caught your eye, head over to our car configurator to see how much you could save on your next car. Or, for more inspiration, take a look at our deals page to see our latest discounts.

Nissan Qashqai (2014-2017)

Roomy family car with a raised driving position and cheap running costs
6/10
£18,960 - £30,550
RRP
Read review

Mercedes C-Class (2014-2017)

Smart-looking saloon with a posh interior and a desirable badge
6/10
£29,040 - £48,855
RRP
Read review Compare offers

Volkswagen Golf SV

Spacious MPV version of the Golf is an excellent family car
5/10
£20,575 - £28,935
RRP
Read review Compare offers
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