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What Are The Safest SUVs in 2021?

Once the vehicle of choice for skiers and surfers, adventurers and mountain climbers, sport utility vehicles (SUVs) are now viewed as the ideal vehicle for active families. Sure, they can hold all kinds of gear, equipment, and provisions, but they’re beloved for transporting the most important thing of all:  your family.

Pile everyone into an SUV and you can easily and comfortably travel to your destination, whether it’s a nearby soccer game or a faraway camp site. And since you’re carrying precious cargo, it’s good to know that the latest SUV models are safer than ever. Most vehicles of this type feature computer-aided design crash structures and driver-assistance tools such as automatic braking and front crash prevention.

According to CarGurus, the following SUVs provide the best safety equipment and protection – and at a reasonable cost. Which means you and your family can hit the road safely whether you’re heading out to the local lacrosse practice or your next cross-country journey.


2019-2021 BMW X3 

A compact, luxury SUV, the BMW X3 has athletic handling, ample head- and legroom, and up to 62.7 cubic feet of cargo space. The X3 comes equipped with automatic emergency braking, forward-collision warning with pedestrian detection, and lane-departure warning. Blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and front and rear parking sensors come standard. The X3 optional safety features include adaptive cruise control, automatic high-beam headlights and adaptive headlights, and hands-free parking assist. Drivers can also select the X3 M40i or theX3 M, each of which offers a potent engine and cornering abilities like that of a performance sedan.


2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime

The RAV4 Prime is a new range-topping version of the RAV4 Hybrid. It builds on the RAV4 Hybrid with plug-in capability, allowing it to drive up to 42 miles on electric power. In addition to 63.2 cubic feet of cargo space, the RAV4 Prime comes with Toyota Safety Sense 2.0, which includes a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, full-speed-range (operates between 0 and 110 mph) dynamic cruise control, lane-departure alert with steering assist, and automatic high beams.

The Safety Sense feature also includes lane-tracing assist that reads the lines on the road to keep the RAV4 Prime centered in its current lane of traffic. Additional available safety features include front and rear parking assist and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert. A touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Amazon Alexa comes standard.


2019-2021 Acura RDX

The Acura RDX has a five-star overall safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and is an IIHS “Top Safety Pick+.” Although listed as a compact, the RDX has more than enough room for five passengers and up to 58.9 cubic feet of cargo space. The RDX also has a standard 272-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine, and comes with the AcuraWatch suite of driver-assistance features. AcuraWatch includes forward-collision avoidance, automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and lane-departure warning. Available safety features include blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and front and rear parking sensors.


2020-2021 Mazda CX-30 

The CX-30 is a 2021 IIHS Top Safety Pick+ and it earns a five-star overall rating from the NHTSA. One of the newest small crossovers from Mazda, the CX-30 is slotted above the subcompact Mazda CX-3. In addition to an upscale cabin like that of a luxury vehicle, this SUV comes with Mazda’s i-Activsense collection of driver-assistance features, including forward-collision warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane-keep assist, lane-departure warning, automatic high beams, and adaptive cruise control. Also on board:  rain-sensing windshield wipers and driver drowsiness monitoring. Optional safety features on the CX-30 include traffic sign recognition, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-path alert, a head-up display, and a Traffic Jam Assist that helps the SUV stop and go with the flow of traffic.


2019-2021 Subaru Forester

Classified as a compact SUV, the Subaru Forester offers 76.1 cubic feet of cargo space as well as an upright profile and 8.7 inches of ground clearance, giving it plenty of headroom and a commanding view of the road. Its all-wheel drive (AWD) allows for ease of use in inclement weather, and the StarLink infotainment system comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Standard EyeSight driver-assistance features include automatic emergency braking, advanced adaptive cruise control, and lane-departure warning. The Forester is available with reverse automatic emergency braking, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-change assist, and adaptive LED headlights.