The 14 Safest SUVs for 2020

2020 Hyundai Palisade
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Too Many SUVs to Consider? Safety Ratings Can Help Thin the Herd

The SUV and crossover market continues to expand with new and recently redesigned models. Even though more choice is good for consumers, it can make the shopping process a little hectic. These types of vehicles are often purchased with a family’s needs in mind, so common considerations include passenger and cargo space, value, and overall practicality. Still, potential buyers are left with a lot of good options. If safety is also a priority for you, this list will help to narrow down your field of top contenders. 

The following slides will take a close look at crossovers and SUVs with the best safety credentials, based on our scoring methodology. U.S. News & World Report uses crash test information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), and also considers each vehicle’s list of standard advanced safety systems. Note that our scores may change as we receive new information, and therefore, the scores in this slideshow may not match the scores you'll see on the individual vehicle reviews.

The NHTSA and IIHS have their own sets of testing criteria, both of which are valuable to consumers. These test procedures may change over time, and automakers often change equipment and features from year to year. For both of those reasons, ratings aren’t automatically comparable from one year to another and may not necessarily carry over. 

The NHTSA, which is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation, performs several crash tests and simulations that are scored on a one- to five-star scale, with five stars being the top score. Not all vehicles undergo full or partial testing each year, and it’s possible that a vehicle never gets tested – particularly when it is not produced or sold in high volume. 

The IIHS is funded by the automotive insurance industry, and evaluates crashworthiness as well as headlight effectiveness. Crash tests are evaluated on a scale of Poor, Marginal, Acceptable, and Good. The IIHS also gives Top Safety Pick and Top Safety Pick+ designations to vehicles that have excellent test scores, strong headlight performance, and (potentially) other crash-prevention features.

Now, let’s take a look at the safest SUVs on the market in 2020.

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