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One of the most important issues to consider when buying a new SUV is car safety. While their larger architecture may give the appearance of protection, only a thorough battery of crash tests can assess if an SUV is safe. Many are conducted through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

SUVs bolster crash protection not only with their structure but with a myriad of driver-assistance features. Automatic emergency braking (AEB), blind-spot monitoring (BSM), lane keep assist (LKA), and rear cross-traffic alert (RCTA) are some universal features offered. Only the safest small SUVs have superior crash safety ratings and a well-endowed suite of collision-avoidance tech. According to U.S. News, here are the five safest small SUVs of 2022.

2022 Genesis GV70

A red Genesis GV70 compact crossover luxury SUV model driving through a city
Genesis GV70 compact luxury SUV | HYUNDAI MOTOR COMPANY

While the Genesis GV70 may not be a segment leader for handling, its stunning looks make up for it. The all-wheel drive five-seater provides excellent acceleration and has a supremely luxurious interior. The NHTSA has not yet rated the GV70, but the IIHS gave it a Top Safety Pick+ designation.

Standard Genesis safety features include BSM, forward collision-avoidance (FCA), LKA, RCTA, a surround-view monitor, and a highway driving assistance system. The GV70 can even park itself with a smart parking assist controllable from the key fob, but that’s for the top-of-the-line spec. U.S. News says the base 2.5-liter begins just north of $40,000, but the premier 3.5-liter turbo is at least $52,600.

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander

The Mitsubishi Outlander was given a Top Safety Pick+ award from the IIHS but was not rated by the NHTSA. One of the main reasons behind its ability to impress is its intuitive safety tech features.

AEM, BSM, lane departure warning (LDW), pedestrian detection, RCTA, and driver drowsiness monitoring come on all seven trim levels. The base ES 2.5-liter Outlander begins at a reasonable $26,995. The SEL 2.5-liter Touring Package from Mitsubishi can be had for $35,845. However, the most expensive trim level comes with adaptive cruise control (ACC), LKA, and traffic sign recognition (TSR).

2022 Ford Bronco Sport

The smaller Ford Bronco sibling may have impressive off-road driving dynamics, but it lacks its competitors’ lavish feel. The Bronco Sport has a comfortable interior with easy-to-use tech features and top ratings from the IIHS and NHTSA.

According to U.S. News, standard safety features include ACC, AEB, BSM, FCA, LKA, and TSR. Nevertheless, the tech continues off-road. With its innovative “Breadcrumb Navigation,” the Ford will trace where the vehicle has been so drivers don’t get lost. The base model five-seater begins at $28,815. However, Ford says the 2022 model year Bronco Sport is sold out.

2022 Toyota Corolla Cross

Although it’s based on the subcompact Toyota Corolla, the Corolla Cross SUV provides immense cargo space. With five seats and plenty of drivetrain configuration choices, it’s also an excellent pick for its safety qualifications.

The IIHS awarded the Corolla Cross a Top Safety Pick+, and the NHTSA gave it a five-star safety rating. Toyota’s excellent Safety Sense system comes on every Corolla Cross. The package includes AEB, automatic high beams, FCW, LDW, pedestrian detection, and a rearview camera. Base models begin at an impressive $22,445. The top XLE trim starts at $26,575 but includes reverse AEB, BSM, and parking sensors. 

2022 Audi Q5

The Audi Q5 may be a bit cramped, but it has a well-trimmed upscale interior packed with infotainment features. The Q5 is also generously loaded with industry-leading safety tech. Standard safety tech includes AEB, automatic high beams, BSM, FCW, LDW, and multiple parking sensors.

The IIHS awarded Audi’s Q5 a Top Safety Pick+, and the NHTSA added a five-star safety rating. Nonetheless, the luxury and credentials come at a price. The base model Audi Q5 begins at $43,500. The top-of-the-line Prestige model will fetch $58,395, but it includes a nifty parking guidance feature.

What are the safest small SUVs of 2022?

Purchasing a new vehicle will give owners the best up-to-date collision-avoidance equipment, safety improvements, and manufacturer’s warranty. When selecting a brand-new small SUV, the price will weigh heavily in the equation.

Given its star-studded safety ratings, standard collision-avoidance tech, and great looks, one small SUV stands out in the crowd. Considering its base price of close to $20,000, famed reliability, and small package, the 2022 Toyota Corolla Cross is one of the best on sale today.


2022 Toyota Corolla Cross Review, Pricing, and Specs