Every year, crash-testing organizations put thousands of cars through their paces, testing models for safety features and weaknesses. They then combine their findings into a report and rating, telling parents how safe a vehicle is.
What is great about this system is that it is all third-party. Manufacturers send their vehicles to testing facilities which then independently assess their ability to protect passengers in the event of an accident.
So, which are the safest cars out there? Let us take a look!
The Ford Ranger and its sister vehicle, Everest, are among the safest vehicles for occupant protection on the market. ANCAP currently gives the cars 93 percent for child safety, making them among the highest of any vehicle in history. The cars performed well in both frontal and side-impact tests compared to other vehicles in their class.
Testers particularly liked the vehicle’s pre-tensioned seat belts. These kick in quickly during an accident, preventing children’s body’s from flying forward before coming into contact with the restraint.
Coming in at a close second is the Mitsubishi Outlander, a vehicle that looks strikingly similar to the Ford Ranger. The Outlander scored 92 percent in ANCAP’s child safety testing, making it one of the top vehicles in its class. It nearly gets full marks for child restraint installation and a decent score for onboard safety installations.
Its best score came in the full-width frontal crash test where it scored 6.84 out of ten. The large crumple zone at the front of the vehicle protects passengers and keeps them safe.
Next on the list is the similarly-proportioned Mercedes-Benz GLA, a large SUV from the German automaker. Along with the CLA, EQA, GLE, and B-Class, the GLA scored 92 percent in ANCAP’s child protection testing, making it one of the top vehicles in the class. GLAs feature multiple airbags at the front, side, and second-row outer seats for side impact protection. They also include knee airbags as standard, reducing the risk of injury in the event of a collision still further.
Unfortunately, whiplash protection was not as good on the vehicle as in some others, making it more likely you will need to go to a car accident lawyer after an accident. The vehicle only scored around 75 percent of the maximum for that metric.
The Subaru Outback is another large vehicle that scores well for child protection. ANCAP gave it a 91 percent rating, putting it just behind offerings from Mitsubishi and Mercedes.
According to crash testing reports, protection for six- and ten-year-old dummies is good for all body areas. Side impact protection for the chest was poor, though it was good for all other areas.
Mazda 6 Wagon
Lastly, we have the Mazda 6 Wagon, a large family vehicle that scored 91 percent in ANCAP testing. This vehicle offers excellent child restraint installation and scores maximum points on dynamic frontal and side-impact tests. The only weakness is the inability to install a small child seat in the center of the second row.
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