Special Report

Safest New Cars for 2021

These days, it’s possible to find in most new cars vehicle-safety features that just a few years ago would have been considered premium add-on options for luxury vehicles. Even modestly-priced cars come with these new technologies, including adaptive cruise control, forward-collision warning systems or automatic emergency braking. Such features can save lives, reduce injury, and help avoid expensive collision repairs and insurance claims.  

Though cars and roads are gradually becoming safer over time, an average of around 32,000 fatal passenger-car collisions occurred annually in the U.S. from 2010 to 2019, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, excluding crashes that caused survivable injuries and property damage. In 2020, lighter traffic as a result of COVID-19 restrictions emboldened reckless driving habits, causing fatal crashes to jump to 38,680. 

Though the safest vehicles tend to be luxury sedans and SUVs that offer the most safety features, there are also more affordable options that have received high marks for safety in the 2021 model year. (Here are the longest lasting cars on the road.)

To determine the safest new cars for 2021, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s 2021 Top Safety Picks. IIHS assessed the crashworthiness, crash prevention technology, and headlights of vehicles from the most recent model year. Only nameplates that sold over 5,000 units in 2020 were considered. Vehicle sales data came from GoodCarBadCar. Cars are listed in alphabetical order. 

The IIHS divided the Top Safety Pick+ award winners by car size. Among them were a few small cars, such as the Mazda 3, and several midsize sedans, such as the Honda Accord. Many more SUVs, however, were among the top safety picks, including the Chevrolet Trailblazer and Hyundai Tucson small SUVs. Found out if these are the 25 least expensive cars to insure.

Click here to see the safest new cars for 2021