A blue car with significant side impact damage in a crash test facility.

Are you curious about what car is most likely to survive a crash?

Safety is crucial for many buyers, prompting them to scrutinize crash test results and ratings before purchasing. This article delves into the essentials of vehicular safety, highlighting the most resilient models in Australia.

Read on for expert insights and recommendations on selecting a car that offers the best protection in a crash, ensuring you make an informed decision without compromising safety.

Understanding Car Safety Ratings

Car safety ratings are essential to vehicle safety, providing crucial information to help buyers make informed decisions. These ratings are derived from rigorous testing and analysis by various organisations, including the Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) and the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP).

Used Car Safety Ratings (UCSR)

The UCSR are typically published by MUARC in collaboration with various road safety and automobile clubs, government departments, and transport safety entities across Australia and New Zealand. The UCSR offers safety ratings for used cars, focusing on providing acceptable or good ratings for consumer guidance. These ratings are based on the analysis of police-reported crashes involving over 9 million vehicles.

The UCSR rates vehicles on a scale from 1 to 5 stars, where 1 star represents the lowest performing 20% of vehicles in a category, and 5 stars represent the top 20%. Vehicles marked as ‘Safer picks’ provide good protection for the driver are less likely to cause severe injuries to others and have a lower risk of being involved in fatal crashes, including reversing incidents.

The analysis indicates that drivers of the worst-scoring vehicles are eight times more likely to be seriously injured or killed than those in the best-scoring vehicles.

ANCAP Star Ratings

ANCAP provides safety ratings for new vehicles, which is crucial in informing consumers about the safety performance of new vehicles in Australia and New Zealand.

A vehicle’s ANCAP rating reflects its safety based on the standards and protocols in place at the time of testing. As safety standards evolve, newer models may be subject to more stringent testing, but this does not invalidate the rating of a vehicle tested in the past. Consumers should consider the date of the rating and understand that safety technologies and standards evolve over time.

ANCAP updates its testing criteria periodically to reflect advancements in vehicle safety and technology.

Global Perspective

ANCAP is part of a network of nine New Car Assessment Programs (NCAPs) worldwide. There are multiple NCAPs worldwide, each with its own testing protocols and safety criteria reflective of regional conditions and regulations.

Consequently, safety ratings from overseas NCAPs should only be used as a guide, especially considering the differing specifications of cars sold in various markets.

Top Safety Picks Vehicle for Car Accidents

Drawing upon the assessments from ANCAP and UCSR, our compilation highlights the vehicles that stand out for their safety credentials. These vehicles are equipped with advanced safety features such as automatic braking, electronic stability control, and extensive airbag systems, all contributing to superior protection during a crash.

The compilation presents the highest-rated vehicles for safety across different categories, ranging from compact cars to SUVs. This selection shows the progress in vehicle safety technologies and their role in enhancing crash survivability:


  • Tesla Model 3
  • Audi A3/RS3/S3
  • Audi A4/S4/RS4 (excluding All Road)
  • BMW 3 Series
  • Honda Civic
  • Lexus ES
  • Mazda 3/Axela (sedan version)
  • Mercedes-Benz E-Class W212/C207/A207
  • Subaru Legacy
  • Toyota Camry
  • Volkswagen Passat
  • Kia Cerato
  • Toyota Corolla
  • Mercedes Benz A-class (W175)
  • Mercedes Benz C-Class (W205/S205/C205/A205)
  • Subaru Liberty/Legacy
  • Holden Commodore (VF)
  • Mercedes Benz E-Class W212


  • BMW 1 Series
  • Cupra Born
  • Cupra Leon
  • Mazda 3/Axela (hatchback version)
  • Toyota Yaris
  • Volkswagen Golf VII
  • Audi A3/S3 04-13
  • Audi A3/RS3/S3 13-20

SUV/All-Wheel Drive/Crossovers

  • Audi Q3
  • Audi Q5/SQ5
  • Audi Q7
  • Audi e-tron
  • BMW X5
  • Ford Everest
  • GWM Haval H6
  • Honda CR-V
  • Hyundai Santa Fe
  • Hyundai Palisade
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee
  • Jeep Cherokee
  • Kia Sportage
  • Lexus RX
  • Lexus NX
  • Land Rover Range Rover Sport
  • Mazda CX-3
  • Mazda CX-5
  • Mazda CX-9
  • Mercedes-Benz GLC
  • Mercedes-Benz ML-Class & GL-Class W164/X164
  • Mercedes-Benz ML/GL/GLE/GLS-Class W166/X166/C292
  • Mercedes-Benz ML-Class W163
  • Mitsubishi Outlander
  • Mitsubishi Pajero Sport
  • Nissan Murano
  • Nissan Pathfinder
  • Nissan Qashqai
  • Subaru Forester
  • Subaru Tribeca
  • Toyota LandCruiser Prado
  • Toyota RAV4
  • Toyota C-HR
  • Volvo XC60
  • Volvo XC90
  • Volkswagen Tiguan
  • BMW X1
  • Jeep Compass
  • Ford Kuga
  • Ford Territory
  • Hyundai Santa Fe
  • Jeep Wrangler
  • Lexus RX
  • Mitsubishi/Peugeot Outlander/4007
  • Nissan Murano
  • Subaru Forester
  • Subaru Tribeca
  • Toyota Kluger/Highlander
  • Volvo XC60
  • BMW X3
  • Isuzu MU-X
  • Land Rover Discovery 4/Discovery
  • Mitsubishi Pajero
  • Toyota Landcruiser Prado
  • Volvo XC90


  • Honda Odyssey
  • Kia Carnival
  • Hyundai iLoad
  • Mercedes Benz Vito/Viano/Valente W639
  • Volkswagen Caravelle/Transporter/Multivan


  • Audi A5/S5/RS5
  • Mercedes-Benz CLK

Electric Vehicle (EV)

  • Hyundai Ioniq 5
  • Mercedes-Benz EQE
  • Polestar 2
  • Toyota Mirai

Station Wagons

  • Subaru Outback
  • Audi A4/S4/RS4 AllRoad
  • Volkswagen Passat (wagon version)

Pick-up Truck

  • Ford Ranger
  • Ford/Mazda Ranger/BT-50
  • Holden Colorado
  • Mitsubishi Triton
  • Volkswagen Amarok


  • Toyota Prius 3/V

Compact Car

  • Subaru Impreza/XV

Remember, before making a purchase decision, it’s advisable to thoroughly investigate the latest safety ratings and feature advancements of the specific car model you are considering.

What Car Safety Features Should I Look For?

When selecting a car, safety should be a priority. Understanding the importance of these ratings and safety features can guide consumers toward making a safer vehicle choice.

Key features to consider include:

  • Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB): Automatically applies brakes to prevent or reduce the severity of a collision.
  • Anti-lock Braking System (ABS): Anti-lock brakes prevent wheel lockup during emergency braking, maintaining steering control.
  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC): Improves a vehicle’s stability by detecting and reducing loss of traction.
  • Lane Departure Warning (LDW): Alerts the driver when the car begins to move out of its lane.
  • Lane Support System (LSS): Assists in keeping the vehicle within its lane and can intervene in steering to prevent unintentional lane departure.
  • Blind Spot Monitoring: Detects and warns of vehicles in the driver’s blind spots.
  • Automatic High Beams: Automatically adjust the vehicle’s high beam headlights. The system detects oncoming traffic and lighting conditions, switching between high and low beams to improve night-time visibility without dazzling other drivers.
  • Adaptive Cruise Control: Keeps a secure gap between you and the car in front.
  • Rear Cross-Traffic Alert: Warns of traffic crossing behind the vehicle when reversing.
  • Forward Collision Warning (FCW): Alerts the driver of an impending collision with a vehicle ahead.
  • Airbags: Essential for protecting occupants in a crash.
  • Active Head Restraints: Designed to prevent or reduce the severity of neck injuries in rear-end collisions. These head restraints automatically move forward and upward in the event of a rear-end crash, providing better support for the head and reducing the risk of whiplash.
  • Safety-belt features: Safety belts, also known as seat belts, are crucial for occupant safety in a vehicle. They prevent or reduce injuries during a crash by restraining the occupants.
  • Traction Control System: Prevents wheel spin during acceleration.
  • Tire-Pressure Monitors: Automatically monitors the pressure in all tires, alerting the driver to under-inflation, which can lead to decreased stability and increased wear.
  • Reversing Camera: Helps in seeing behind the vehicle while reversing.
  • Telematics: Utilises telecommunications and informatics to provide vehicle diagnostics and can offer real-time data on vehicle usage, maintenance needs, and driving behaviour.
  • LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children): A standardised system of anchors and tethers for child safety seats, making them easier to install correctly and securely.
  • Parking Assist Systems: These systems help drivers park more safely by using sensors to detect nearby objects and providing guidance or automatic control to maneuver into parking spots.

Prioritising these advanced safety features when choosing your next vehicle can significantly enhance your driving experience and safety. Remember, investing in a car with these technologies is not just about comfort or luxury; it’s about ensuring the safety and well-being of you and your passengers.

Stay safe and make informed decisions for a secure journey on the road ahead.

What Makes a Car Safe in Rear-End Collision?

In rear-end collisions, certain car features significantly enhance safety. It’s essential to consider the vehicle’s structural design to strengthen protection in rear-end collisions.

Cars with reinforced rear structures can better withstand impacts, preserving the integrity of the passenger compartment. Energy-absorbing materials in bumpers and rear areas also reduce the force transmitted to occupants. 

Additionally, modern cars incorporate rear collision warning and automatic emergency braking systems. It detects impending collisions and either alerts the driver or autonomously applies brakes to mitigate the impact.

Advanced seat designs are also crucial, particularly those with whiplash protection systems. These seats are engineered to move in a controlled manner during a collision, supporting the head and reducing neck injuries.

Car manufacturers integrating these structural and technological features enhance safety in rear-end collision scenarios.

Explore our detailed rear-end collision guide for insurance and injury compensation claims after such incidents.

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For quick information on our No Win, No Fee terms and disbursements, please visit our No Win No Fee Lawyers Page 

The Role of Vehicle Size and Weight in Safety

The relationship between a vehicle’s size and weight and its safety in a crash is a critical aspect of vehicle design. Generally, the more extensive, heavy vehicle tends to fare better in crashes than smaller, lighter vehicles. The physics behind this involves the amount of force a vehicle can absorb and distribute during a crash. 

The larger vehicle has more crumple zones and structural integrity, which can better protect the passenger seat by absorbing more impact force. However, it’s important to note that advancements in safety technology and design have also significantly improved the safety of smaller vehicles. The key is to balance size and weight with effective safety features and structural design to ensure optimal protection during a crash.

Seek Expert Legal Assistance for a Car Accident Injury

If you’ve found this guide on the safest cars helpful, remember even the safest car can be involved in a car accident. Should you see yourself in a car-related incident, it’s crucial to have expert legal support. 

At Foyle Legal, we are a leading law firm in Perth, Western Australia, specialising in workers’ compensation and personal injury law. We have expert car accident injury lawyers for motor vehicle accident injury claims. If you’re involved in a car-related incident and sustained an injury, we can provide you with the necessary legal assistance.

Foyle Legal personal injury lawyers are skilled in handling various personal injury compensation claims, ensuring you receive the best legal advice and representation. Whether navigating motor injury insurance claims or seeking compensation for injuries sustained in a car accident, we can support you through every step.

For those dealing with the aftermath of an auto accident, Foyle Legal offers a free initial consultation to assess your case. We are one of the best No Win No Fee lawyers, providing quality legal advice without the upfront financial burden for legal fees.

If you’re concerned about your injury compensation case following a car-related incident, contact us now for professional and compassionate legal support tailored to your unique situation.

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Final Thought

When choosing a car that will keep you safe in the event of a crash, there are many factors to consider. From advanced safety features to sturdy construction, the options are endless. However, the most important thing is prioritising safety and choosing a car with the latest technology and a strong crash test rating.

Remember, car accidents can happen to anyone, so being prepared is crucial. Whether you’re a new driver or a seasoned pro, investing in a car that prioritises safety is a decision that can save lives. 

So, the next time you’re in the market for new cars, safety is the most important factor, and choose a car that is most likely to survive a crash. Your life may depend on it.


At Foyle Legal, we prioritize reliable and trustworthy information sourced from leading authorities. Our content is based on peer-reviewed research, top academic institutions, respected journals, up-to-date laws and regulations, and validated government data. We also consider authoritative public opinion when relevant. We avoid lower-quality references and clearly list our sources in a dedicated section for each blog post, complete with publication details and direct links for easy verification. Additionally, we endeavor to regularly review and update our articles to ensure the information remains current and reflects the latest developments. Our commitment is to ensure the integrity and reliability of the information we provide. To understand our commitment to accuracy and currency in our content, we invite you to review our editorial policy.

Christian Foyle best injury compensation lawyers Perth for workers comp and personal injury claims

Christian Foyle, founder and director of Foyle Legal - one of the top-rated personal injury law firms in Perth, Western Australia. Christian has been named one of the best compensation lawyers, leading workers' lawyers, and recommended public liability lawyers in WA. Born and raised in Western Australia, his mission is to bring social justice to those injured in accidents that are not their fault. Christian helps injured people seek fair compensation with a No Win, No Fee solution. Follow him on TikTok and LinkedIn.

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