This is what my mother always used to tell me, and though I rolled my eyes at the time, when it comes to cars this is absolutely true.
Modern cars are safer than ever, thanks to structural design and active safety technology, which has flourished in recent years. If you’re looking for an SUV that has your back on the road, here’s our list of the top 6 safest SUV’s of 2019.
1. 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLC 300
The Mercedes-Benz GLC 300 sets a high standard for luxury SUV’s, starting with its elegant design and plush interior. Comfort-lovers and aesthetes will appreciate the spacious cabin with its flowing lines, quality materials and expansive view of the road.
It provides a confidence-inspiring drive, strong and eager on the road yet light and responsive, with impressively consistent steering and handling.
A wide array of features – from smartphone integration and a premium Burmester surround-sound audio system, to its world-class adaptive cruise control – keeps the GLC further in front of the curve.
What makes it so safe? Nearly perfect crash-test scores and advanced safety features, though you will have to pay extra for some of them. Automatic emergency braking and forward collision warning, as well as two intelligent safety systems: Crosswind Assist and Attention Assist.
Crosswind Assist uses sensors to detect strong gusts of wind and applies the brakes on the side facing the wind, thus keeping the vehicle stable in its line. It works when driving straight or around gentle curves.
Attention Assist is a sophisticated feature that detects when the driver is getting tired and beeps to let them know they should take a break.
How on earth does the car figure this out? Basically, when people get tired behind the wheel they start driving badly. This system monitors changes in steering behavior and signs of errors, such as drifting and quickly swerving back into the lane.
These signs, taken along with weather, local conditions and time behind the wheel, can indicate driver fatigue.
Along with alerting the driver to their condition, Attention Assist can make small adjustments to correct for errors until the driver has a chance to rest.
2019 Acura MDX
The 2019 MDX is a well-rounded luxury crossover, an excellent choice for families who value safety, comfort, and utility.
It’s a heavy hitter with 290hp, but it prioritizes ride quality, with smooth handling and effortless acceleration. This plus its roomy, well-padded interior (seating seven comfortably) makes it ideal for long road trips.
Despite its sleek appearance and high-class interior, the MDX is a flexible and eminently pragmatic vehicle. The inside contains plenty of cubbies and small storage spaces. For storage, you get 15 cubic feet with all three rows of seats, 38.4 with the last row folded down and 68.4 with both back rows folded.
In short, it can carry you across the country, carry around your kids after school with all their gear or take you all a weekend trip, towing up to 3,500lb.
What makes it so safe? The MDX has always been strong on technology, and this year’s model is no exception, especially in the safety department.
Top-level safety technology scores the MDX its top rating from the IIHS (“Superior”) for front crash prevention. The qualifications for this include forward collision warning, low-speed autobrake, and high-speed autobrake.
This SUV is generous with standard safety features. All MDX models feature LED headlights, lane keeping assist system, automatic emergency braking, and adaptive cruise control, which functions well even in heavy traffic.
You can upgrade with the Technology package to add blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert. The Advance package adds all of these plus a surround-view camera.
The interior contains extra airbags, including head curtain airbags, side curtains deployed by a rollover sensor, and a driver knee airbag.
2019 Mazda CX-5
The sporty, agile CX-5 is the perfect compact SUV for anyone who loves to drive. Great steering (weighted heavier than in most crossovers) and fantastic allows you to bend neatly around corners even at high speeds.
It really comes alive on curvy roads, but its lively powertrain makes it feel quick and engaging even when just driving around town. It’s definitely the best-handling crossover out there, and it won’t even break the bank.
The CX-5 offers excellent value. Starting at $25,345, its appearance inside and out will fool you into thinking you’ve invested in a much more expensive SUV. The upscale cabin is beautifully laid out and lined with quality materials.
What makes it so safe? Take a look through the CX-5’s history of IIHS ratings and you’ll see that it’s become safer every year. In fact, it’s earned top marks on IIHS crash tests for the last six years. This year it’s placed solidly in the IIHS’ top ranking, scoring high across the board in crash tests, headlights, and forward crash prevention.
From the side of the driver, excellent steering, handling, and brakes make it easy to react to conditions and situations. What makes the CX-5 a lot of fun also makes it safer!
As for tech, the CX-5 has its bases covered. All the most important advanced safety features come together in one package, the Mazda i-ACTIVSENSE safety suite. This includes blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, Advanced Smart City Brake Support with pedestrian detection, a lane departure warning system with lane-keeping assist, adaptive front lighting and radar cruise control with stop and go capabilities.
The i-ACTIVESENSE system employs a camera, milliwave radar, quasi-milliwave radar, and a near-infrared laser to keep tabs on the car’s surroundings. It will maintain a safe distance from the car ahead, notify the driver when vehicles on the highway approach from the rear and sound an alarm when there’s a risk of collision.
2019 Audi Q5
The Audi Q5 is an attractive, clean-cut SUV. Its turbo-4 powertrain delivers power and speed but tuned for comfort. It’s quiet and calm even over rough road conditions.
Its new all-wheel-drive system, called Quattro ultra, works smoothly to redistribute power between the four wheels. This gives it better grip around turns and easy handling over snow, ice, wet roads or dirt.
The Q5’s handsome, classic appearance is matched by the interior. This is a vehicle that you can really enjoy spending some time inside.
What makes it so safe? Advanced safety features and driving systems, especially on the top levels, contribute to making the Q5 one of the safest SUV’s.
Its automatic emergency braking system has been highly rated. Available in two versions, the basic system is capable of completely avoiding a collision at 12mph and the upgraded optional system at 25mph. Either choice slows the SUV enough to significantly reduce the impact of a collision. Forward collision warnings also come standard.
A suite of safety features is available, including adaptive cruise control, a system to follow cars in heavy traffic and an unusually competent lane centering function.
2019 Honda Pilot
The roomy, kid-friendly Honda Pilot is a practical, efficient choice of compact SUV, with enough power and technical features to accomplish whatever’s asked of it.
Various choices for layout, an option of a DVD entertainment system, huge cargo space and nice touches like 16 cupholders spread through the rows (yes, 16) make it the perfect family SUV.
Comfy seats and tri-zone climate control will keep everyone happy over long rides. Noise and vibration isolation is excellent. In fact, it may be the quietest vehicle in its class.
What makes it so safe? In previous years, Honda had as an option the Honda Sensing package of safety features. These now all come standard on the Pilot, so all trims include forward-collision alert with automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assist and adaptive cruise control (at over 20mph).
Honda’s Advanced Compatibility Engineering Body Structure is also part of the Pilot. This design of the SUV’s body and frameworks to minimize interior damage in a crash. A 3-point seat belt design and many airbags also support in case of an accident.
At upper trim levels, you get even more protective features, such as a blind spot information system and rear cross traffic monitor on EX trims and above. The Pilot’s cabin also offers unrivaled visibility, giving the driver a clear view of the road all around.
2019 Honda CR-V
One of the most popular SUV’s, the CR-V is a winner overall.
Convenience? Check. With huge cargo space and an abundance of clever small storage spaces, it’s got room for everything.
Utility? It drives well, with precise steering, confident handling, and strong acceleration. It can tow up to 1,500lb. and though it isn’t a standout off-road vehicle, it can perform capably on unpaved roads.
Comfort? Got it in spades. Its roomy interior is thoughtfully designed with easy access and great visibility. It offers more space in the back rows than almost any other small SUV.
What makes it so safe? The CR-V is ranked as one of the safest SUV’s, having aced all its crash tests. A plethora of advanced safety tech is available on all but the base trim.
On upper trim levels, standard safety features include lane keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, and automatic emergency braking.