Roundup: All the 2018 IIHS Top Safety Pick+ winners

December 7, 2017

The insurance industry-funded IIHS says that these are the safest cars you can buy today—they're the ones that qualify for its coveted Top Safety Pick+ award.

Last year, making the cut became even more difficult thanks to a new headlight effectiveness test performed in addition to a battery of tests designed to measure a car's safety structure. Also, nearly every new car on the market now offers forward collision warnings and automatic emergency braking—at least as an extra-cost option. A high-functioning automatic emergency braking system is a requirement to be rated a Top Safety Pick+.

DON'T MISS: How to be sure your new car really is a Top Safety Pick+

Now, cars need to earn at least the agency's "good" ratings for their headlights, and either "advanced" or "superior" for their available automatic emergency braking, plus "good" ratings in the following crash tests:

  • Driver-side small overlap front
  • Moderate overlap front
  • Side impact
  • Roof strength
  • Head restraint

Also new for 2018 is a Passenger-side small overlap front crash test, and a rating of "acceptable" or "good" is required. If a vehicle receives all those marks, it's considered a Top Safety Pick+. It can be awarded the standard Top Safety Pick title if its headlights don't pass muster or if it doesn't offer a strong-performing automatic emergency braking. One caveat to this award is that, to be considered a Top Safety Pick+, the individual model must both be equipped with often optional automatic emergency braking and with the highest-performing headlights available.

For instance, the 2018 Subaru Legacy is considered a Top Safety Pick+ only if it is equipped with the automaker's optional EyeSight safety suite (which includes automatic emergency braking) and if it has the optional LED headllights (included on the Limited trim level only). A Legacy without either of those features still has a robust safety structure, but its lights aren't as effective and it can't apply the brakes on its own to prevent altogether or mitigate the severity of a collision.

The lesson here? Just because a car appears on the list below doesn't automatically mean it comes standard with all of the available safety features needed to earn the top award. Shop carefully!

2017 Audi A4 in IIHS crash testing

2017 Audi A4 in IIHS crash testing

Look for this list to continue to grow as the IIHS tests more 2018 models... and keep in mind that the IIHS doesn't test every car on the market.

2018 Top Safety Pick+ Award winners:

  • 2018 BMW 5 series
  • 2018 Genesis G80
  • 2018 Genesis G90
  • 2018 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe
  • 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport
  • 2018 Kia Forte sedan
  • 2018 Kia Soul
  • 2018 Lincoln Continental
  • 2018 Mercedes-Benz E-Class sedan
  • 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLC
  • 2018 Subaru Impreza 4-Door Sedan
  • 2018 Subaru Impreza 4-Door Wagon
  • 2018 Subaru Legacy
  • 2018 Subaru Outback
  • 2018 Subaru WRX
  • 2018 Toyota Camry

Some cars perform very well in the IIHS' tests but either their headlights don't quite pass muster or they didn't make the mark in the passenger side small overlap crash test. These cars earn the Top Safety Pick award—without the +.

2018 Top Safety Pick Award winners:

  • 2018 Acura MDX
  • 2018 Acura RDX
  • 2018 Alfa Romeo Giulia
  • 2018 Audi A3
  • 2018 Audi A4
  • 2018 BMW 3 Series Sedan
  • 2018 Buick Envision
  • 2018 Chevrolet Volt
  • 2018 Chrysler Pacifica
  • 2018 Honda Accord
  • 2018 Honda CR-V
  • 2018 Honda Odyssey
  • 2018 Honda Pilot
  • 2018 Honda Ridgeline
  • 2018 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT
  • 2018 Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid
  • 2018 Hyundai Sonata
  • 2018 Hyundai Tucson
  • 2018 Kia Cadenza
  • 2018 Kia Optima
  • 2018 Kia Sorento
  • 2018 Kia Sportage
  • 2018 Lexus ES
  • 2018 Lexus IS
  • 2018 Lexus NX
  • 2018 Lexus RX
  • 2018 Mazda 3 4-Door Hatchback
  • 2018 Mazda 3 4-Door Sedan
  • 2018 Mazda CX-3
  • 2018 Mazda CX-5
  • 2018 Mazda CX-9
  • 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class
  • 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander
  • 2018 Nissan Altima
  • 2018 Nissan Maxima
  • 2018 Nissan Rogue
  • 2018 Subaru Crosstrek
  • 2018 Subaru Forester
  • 2018 Toyota Avalon
  • 2018 Toyota Corolla
  • 2018 Toyota Highlander
  • 2018 Toyota Prius
  • 2018 Toyota Prius Prime
  • 2018 Toyota RAV4
  • 2018 Volvo S60
  • 2018 Volvo V60
  • 2018 Volvo XC60

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