Safety First

America's Safest Vehicles: These 23 cars and SUVs earned the IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating for 2020

Mazda is the automaker with the most vehicles to earn the coveted IIHS Top Safety Pick+ designation.

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

This week the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) released their list of the 2020 Top Safety Pick+ vehicles. The models earning this designation are the cream of the crop earning high marks for their safety features, crashworthiness, and headlight visibility.

To qualify as a 2020 Top Safety Pick+ winner, vehicles must score at least a Good rating in the driver-size small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraint tests. They must also get an Advanced or Superior rating for available front crash prevention — vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-pedestrian evaluations. Finally, their headlights must be rated as Acceptable or Good.

The vehicles listed below checked all those boxes.

Acura RDX

2020 Acura RDX

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

The Acura RDX is a four-door midsize luxury SUV. It earned all Good crash test ratings and a mixed Good and Acceptable headlight rating (varies by trim level). It has Superior front vehicle-to-vehicle crash protection and Advanced front vehicle-to-pedestrian crash prevention.

Audi A6

2020 Audi A6

Photo courtesy of Audi AG

The Audi A6 is a luxury large four-door sedan. It earned similar marks to the RDX with all Good crash test ratings and a mixed Good and Acceptable headlight rating (varies by trim level). It performed better in the front crash protection scenarios earning two Superior ratings.

Cadillac XT6

2020 Cadillac XT6 Photo courtesy of Cadillac

The Cadillac XT6 is a four-door midsize luxury SUV that is new to the market for 2020. This award only applies to models built after October 2019. It earns all Good crash test ratings, an Acceptable headlight rating, and Superior front crash protection ratings for its standard and available systems.

Genesis G70

2020 Genesis G70

Photo courtesy of Genesis Motor LLC

Despite being the smallest car Genesis builds, the G70 is categorized by IIHS as a four-door luxury large car. The ratings it earned apply only to models built after December 2019. While it earned all Good marks for crashworthiness, the car faltered a bit in the headlight test with the available headlights earning a Good rating while others got a less distinguished Passing rating. It has Superior front vehicle-to-vehicle crash protection and Advanced front vehicle-to-pedestrian crash prevention.

Genesis G80

2020 Genesis G80

Photo courtesy of Genesis Motor LLC

IIHS also categorizes the Genesis G80 as a four-door luxury large car. It too earned all Good crash test ratings. Its headlights took home Good and Acceptable marks. It has Superior front vehicle-to-vehicle crash protection and Advanced front vehicle-to-pedestrian crash prevention.

Honda Insight

2020 Hyundai Insight

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

The Honda Insight is a four-door small sedan with big appeal for commuters. It has earned the highest marks IIHS gives in each area it was evaluated. The Insight is one of the few models to earn just high praise.

Hyundai Nexo

2020 Hyundai Nexo

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Despite being from the Hyundai brand, the four-door hydrogen-powered SUV is categorized as a midsize luxury SUV by IIHS. This probably has something to do with its high price tag. The Nexo scored nearly all top-tier ratings. The exception is in the vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention test where it earned an Advanced rating.

Lexus ES

2020 Lexus ES

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

The 2020 Lexus ES 350 is a four-door midsize luxury car that was redesigned for the 2019 model year. It scored all Good ratings in the crashworthiness tests but earned just Good and Acceptable headlight ratings as the lights vary by trim level. It has Superior front vehicle-to-vehicle crash protection and Advanced front vehicle-to-pedestrian crash prevention.

Lexus NX

2018 Lexus NX

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

IIHS categorizes the four-door Lexus NX as a midsize luxury sedan. It, like the Honda Insight, earned all top-tier marks inn every testing category.

Mazda CX-3

2020 Mazda CX-3

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

As far as four-door small SUVs go, the Mazda CX-3 is one of the safest. It scored all Good ratings in the crashworthiness tests but earned just Good and Acceptable headlight ratings because the lights vary by trim level. It has Superior front vehicle-to-vehicle crash protection and Advanced front vehicle-to-pedestrian crash prevention.

Mazda CX-5

2020 Mazda CX-5

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

IIHS's ratings of the four-door Mazda CX-5 small SUV apply only to models with the available front crash prevention system. When equipped with that system, the CX-5 gets rated as having Good crashworthiness, Good and Acceptable headlights because the lights vary by trim level, Superior front vehicle-to-vehicle crash protection with its optional system, and Advanced front vehicle-to-vehicle (standard) and vehicle-to-pedestrian crash prevention (available) with the systems.

Mazda Mazda3 Hatchback

2020 Mazda Mazda3

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

The four-door Mazda Mazda3 Hatchback earned all top-tier ratings from IIHS except in the headlight test where it just had an Acceptable rating.

Mazda Mazda3 Sedan

2020 Mazda Mazda3

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

Like the hatchback variant, the four-door Mazda Mazda3 small sedan earned all top-tier ratings from IIHS except in the headlight test where it just had an Acceptable rating.

Mazda Mazda6

2020 Mazda Mazda6

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

The four-door midsize Mazda Mazda6 is slightly further into its current generation than the Mazda3, which could justify its less stellar ratings. Still, it got all Good marks in the six crashworthiness categories, Superior in the front crash prevention: vehicle-to-vehicle ratings, and Advanced in the front crash prevention: vehicle-to-pedestrian categories. The car's headlights earned Good and Acceptable headlight ratings as the lights vary by trim level.

Mercedes-Benz C-Class

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class, equipped with the available front crash prevention technology, earned nearly perfect ratings. The one holdback is the headlights category where the standard headlamps were only rated Acceptable whereas the available ones received a Good mark.

Mercedes-Benz GLE

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

The Mercedes-Benz GLE, equipped with the available front crash prevention technology, earned the exact same marks as the Mercedes-Benz C-Class.

Nissan Maxima

2020 Nissan Maxima Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The four-door Nissan Maxima sedan is one of the models that earned a nearly perfect score. The only place where it faltered is with its headlamps, which scored just an Acceptable rating.

Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid

2019 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America Inc.

The Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid, a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, earned a perfect score in all the categories IIHS tested.

Subaru Forester

2020 Subaru Forester

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America Inc.

The Subaru Forester small SUV very nearly earned a perfect score. The one holdback is the headlights category where the standard headlamps were only rated Acceptable whereas the available ones received a Good mark.

Subaru Legacy

2020 Subaru Legacy

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America Inc.

The Subaru Legacy's scores are the same as the Subaru Forester's. It got all Good marks except for its standard headlamps, which were only rated Acceptable whereas the available ones received a Good mark.

Subaru Outback

2020 Subaru Outback

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America Inc.

The Subaru Outback's award only applies to vehicles built after October 2019. Those wagons all earned a perfect score in every category except the headlight test. The headlights earned Marginal, Acceptable, and Good marks, depending on the trim level.

Tesla Model 3

Tesla Model 3

Photo courtesy of Tesla

The Tesla Model 3 all-electric sedan earned all Good ratings in its crashworthiness test but didn't score quite as well in the front crash prevention: vehicle-to-pedestrian evaluation where it got just an Advanced rating.

Toyota Camry

2019 Toyota Camry

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

All of the Toyota Camry sedan's crashworthiness scores earned a Good rating. Its headlamps were only rated Acceptable whereas the available ones received a Good mark. The car's front crash prevention: vehicle-to-pedestrian system received an Advanced rating.

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

Hong Kong gained its independence, Dolly the sheep was cloned, Princess Diana passed away. 1997 was a pivotal years for the sport utility vehicle segment as well. It marked the introduction of the Honda CR-V, the model that would go on to rival the Toyota RAV4 in popularity. Honda recently released rankings to show the ten best-selling crossovers since the debut of the CR-V.

Subaru Forester

1998 Subaru Forester

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America, Inc.

Subaru has sold just over 2 million Foresters since it went on sale in 1998, succeeding the Subaru Bighorn, which was also sold as the Isuzu Trooper. The Forester is still one of the top-selling models in the U.S. Subaru sold nearly 30,000 of them in the first two months of 2020.

Lexus RX

1998 Lexus RX

Photo courtesy of Lexus

The Lexus RX is the original luxury crossover and you'll still see many of them on the road after over a decade of use. It got into the game a year later than the CR-V, first being sold in the U.S. in 1998. Still, it's been slightly more popular than the Forester with sales over 2 million in the last 23 years.

Honda Pilot

2004 Honda Pilot

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Honda's popular three-row SUV started its life with a boxy shape that helped it stand out from the crowd in 2002 (2004 model shown above). The second-gen Pilot got even boxier. It's currently in its third generation, which has shifted the look of the model to a more traditional shape with modern tech and family-friendly features. Honda has sold around 2,200,000 Pilots during the last 18 years.

Nissan Rogue

2007 Nissan Rogue

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The Nissan Rogue was introduced just 12 years ago. Since 2007, around 2.5 million of them have been sold. The Rogue is perennially one of the top-selling SUVs in the country and is Nissan's best-selling vehicle in the U.S.

Toyota Highlander

2001 Toyota Highlander \u200b

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

The Toyota Highlander has been around for six years longer than the Nissan Rogue. It debuted in 2000 and went on sale in January 2001 as a 2001 model in the U.S. At first it was a two-row model but since 2004 it has been available as a three-row SUV, eventually evolving into a three-row only format.

Chevrolet Equinox

2003 Chevrolet Equinox debut Detroit Auto Show

Photo by Getty Images

Chevrolet has sold over 3 million Equinoxes since the model first came to market in 2004 as a 2005 model year SUV. At first it was a midsize crossover, then it was downsized to a compact model, making it about the same size as the Subaru Forester and Nissan Rogue.

Toyota RAV4

1997 Toyota RAV4

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

Toyota was one of the pioneers in the segment, launching the RAV4 in 1994. The company has sold over 4 million RAV4s since 1997 as the model has gotten bigger, safer, and more capable. Toyota has offered a variety of RAV4 models over the years from two-door variants to soft top RAV4s. It was the top-selling SUV model in 2019.

Ford Escape

2001 Ford Escape

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

The Ford Escape has only been around since 2001 and its fourth-generation was introduced late last year. The model has evolved from a boxy four-door family hauler to a sleek SUV with abundant cargo capacity and an available hybrid powertrain. Ford has sold around 4.3 million Escapes since the turn of the century.

Jeep Grand Cherokee

1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited. (J-921)

Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

The Grand Cherokee blurs the line between SUV and crossover most on this list, but there's no doubt it's one of the most popular, no matter what you call it. Jeep has sold more Grand Cherokees since 1997 than Ford has Escapes, around 4.5 million.

Honda CR-V

1997 Honda CR-V

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

In the 23 years since it debuted, Honda has sold over 5 million CR-Vs making the model the most popular crossover in the U.S. The company recently debuted the 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid, filling a gap in the market.


Photo courtesy of GMC

Each year, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates cars, trucks, and SUVs sold in the United States in a number of categories including crashworthiness, crash avoidance and mitigation, and child seat anchors.

In each of those categories, there are subsets of ratings that take a closer look at things like the how the vehicle performs in six different types of crash tests, how well the vehicle's headlights perform, and how easy it is to use the child seat LATCH connections.

Clicking through on each set of ratings will reveal a more detailed look at the types of injuries that were measured, distance illuminated, and location of LATCH connections, among other information. You'll also see a variety of photos from the IIHS crash tests.

If there are no major structural or technical changes to a vehicle from model year to model year, the results carry over.

The ratings below include the most up-to-date information as of February 20, 2020.

Please note, the Jeep Gladiator has not yet been tested by IIHS. Nissan's 2020 Titan has also not yet been tested.

2020 Chevrolet Colorado - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Marginal
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Basic
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Chevrolet Colorado - Extended Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Acceptable
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Side: Acceptable
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Basic
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Acceptable
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Chevrolet Colorado - Regular Cab

IIHS testing of the regular cab version of the Chevrolet Colorado is incomplete. However, they have rated the truck's head restraints and seats as Moderate. Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Chevrolet Silverado - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Marginal
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Chevrolet Silverado - Extended Cab

  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Ford F-150 - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Standard): Not tested
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Ford F-150 - Extended Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Standard): Not tested
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Ford Ranger - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Acceptable
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Marginal
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Standard): Superior
      • Vehicle-to-pedestrian (Standard): Advanced
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 GMC Canyon - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Marginal
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Basic
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 GMC Canyon - Extended Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Acceptable
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Side: Acceptable
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Basic
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Standard): Not available
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Not available
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 GMC Sierra 1500 - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Marginal
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 GMC Sierra 1500 - Extended Cab

  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 GMC Sierra 1500 Classic - Extended Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Moderate overlap front: Marginal
    • Head restraints & seats: Poor
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Honda Ridgeline - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Acceptable
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights (varies by trim level): Good/Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Acceptable
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Nissan Frontier - Extended Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Marginal
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Acceptable
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle: Not available
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Nissan Frontier - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Marginal
    • Moderate overlap front: Marginal
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Acceptable
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Poor
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle: Not available
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Ram 1500 - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights (varies by trim level): Good/Marginal
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Ram 1500 - Extended Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Marginal
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Optional): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Acceptable
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Toyota Tacoma - Extended Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights (varies by trim level): Good/Moderate
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Standard): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Toyota Tacoma - Crew Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Good
    • Moderate overlap front: Acceptable
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights (varies by trim level): Good/Marginal
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Standard): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.

2020 Toyota Tundra - Extended Cab

  • Crashworthiness
    • Small overlap front: driver-side: Acceptable
    • Moderate overlap front: Good
    • Side: Good
    • Roof strength: Good
    • Head restraints & seats: Good
  • Crash avoidance & mitigation
    • Headlights: Marginal
    • Front crash prevention
      • Vehicle-to-vehicle (Standard): Superior
  • Child seat anchors
    • LATCH ease of use: Marginal
Click here to see the full ratings.