The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has released its list of 2018 vehicles that earn its Top Safety Pick+ rating.
2018 BMW 5 Series
2018 Genesis G80
2018 Genesis G90
2018 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport
2018 Hyundai Santa Fe XL
2018 Kia Forte
2018 Kia Soul
2018 Lincoln Continental
2018 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2018 Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class
2018 Subaru Impreza
2018 Subaru WRX
2018 Subaru Legacy
2018 Subaru Outback
2018 Toyota Camry
It’s a smaller collection of vehicles than last year — just 15, down from 38 last year — thanks to new rules that add headlight performance and passenger side small-overlap crash protection to the criteria.
All of those 15 Top Safety Pick+ winners come from just seven automakers. Not all of the vehicles come from luxury brands, either. The majority are economy cars or mid-priced family models.
Click on to see the safest cars you can buy for 2018, in alphabetical order by manufacturer.
Our gallery starts with the BMW 5 Series, a luxury sedan last redesigned for 2017. It earns good ratings across the board in the IIHS’s tough evaluations of crashworthiness and collision avoidance.
Genesis is a relatively new brand by name, but the G80 is a car formerly solid as the Hyundai Genesis. It’s available in a Sport trim powered by a 3.3-litre turbocharged V6 that makes 365 hp and 376 lb-ft of torque.
Also on the list is Genesis’s largest sedan, the G90, formerly sold by Hyundai as the Equus. Where the smaller G80 puts an emphasis on performance, this big car is more about coddling occupants in its spacious interior.
We continue our Korean kick with the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport, the brand’s mid-size crossover. It gets good ratings save for its passenger side small overlap crash protection rating, which comes in at the minimum “acceptable” level the IIHS considered for vehicles worthy of inclusion here.
The seven-seat Santa Fe XL is also on the list, thanks to ratings identical to its smaller sibling.
We’re still not done with Korean cars. The Kia Forte is included, but, again, just makes the grade with its acceptable front passenger small overlap result.
The song is the same for the Kia Soul, a compact hatchback/wagon that offers a surprising amount of space considering its small footprint.
Next, we move back into the luxury realm with the Lincoln Continental, a notable full-size sedan that seeks to define this Ford-owned upscale brand.
Then there’s the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. This car, which competes with the 5 Series and G80 listed above, was redesigned into this lovely fifth generation in 2016.
The second Mercedes model on the 2018 list is the GLC-Class compact crossover, another handsome German vehicle that can be optioned with engines making anywhere from 241 to 503 horsepower.
Subaru has four cars on the list, starting with the compact Impreza sedan and hatchback, a nicely-sorted small car is one of the least expensive ways to get standard AWD.
The Impreza’s high-performance sibling, the WRX, is here too. It comes in standard and STI grades that boast 268 hp and 305 hp, respectively, from their turbocharged engines.
The third of four Subarus here is the Legacy mid-size sedan. It comes with four- and six-cylinder powertrains, the larger of which combines with the standard AWD setup to make this car a strong highway performer.
To create its mid-size crossover model, Subaru took the bones of its now-defunct Legacy wagon and bolted in a taller suspension, lending this car extra ground clearance and off-road ability.
Our gallery ends with one of the most popular cars in North America, the Toyota Camry. This family sedan was redone for 2018 with an all-new design that Toyota says adds a level of driver engagement the Camry has never offered before.