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2014 Ford C-Max Safety

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The C-Max still hasn't been rated by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), but the federal government has given it the C-Max Energi model a four-star overall rating (with four stars for frontal and five for side impact).

The C-Max hybrid models include front and side airbags for both front-seat occupants, side air-curtain bags for the first and second rows, and a driver's knee airbag.

A good roster of safety systems and some respectable crash-test ratings make the C-Max at least a mid-pack protector.

As befits a family vehicle, front shoulder belts have adjustable anchors to ensure they fit the widest range of occupants, from growing teens to full-sized parents. It has the usual array of electronic safety systems as well—including stability control, traction control, and anti-lock brakes with emergency brake assist.

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