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Parents, grandparents, and anyone who transports children on a regular basis often prioritize safety when car shopping. That’s why it’s important to check things like safety ratings before you buy a new car. Luckily, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts crash tests and safety checks on a wide range of popular vehicles. If you’re looking for a family-friendly SUV, you’ll be glad to know that the 2022 Ford Explorer passes the IIHS’ strict safety ratings tests, and earns the non-profit organization’s top honor, the Top Safety Pick+ award.

A red 2022 Ford Explorer driving on a bridge.
2022 Ford Explorer | Ford

Is the 2022 Ford Explorer a safe vehicle?

The IIHS considers the 2022 Ford Explorer to be one of the safest vehicles one can buy. This is evidenced by its most recent award. The IIHS gives the new Explorer its highest safety award, the Top Safety Pick+ award. The Top Safety Pick+ award has been around since 2013, and it’s given only to vehicles that ace all the tests. These measure things like crashworthiness, crash prevention, and headlights.

The 2022 Ford Explorer gets a good or better in all major categories. It has acceptable headlights standard on both available trim levels. This is the minimum to qualify for the Top Safety Pick+ award. In addition, it has advanced or superior safety systems.

What do IIHS safety awards mean?

The IIHS is a non-profit that tests vehicles and shares the results of their tests with consumers so that people can make informed decisions about what they buy. By issuing safety ratings and awards, consumers are more aware of potential issues with their vehicles, and car manufacturers have more accountability. The IIHS’ tests have evolved to keep pushing safety standards higher, which is a huge bonus for everyone.

Although a vehicle winning the Top Safety Pick or Top Safety Pick+ award is a definite positive when you’re car shopping, not all vehicles with these awards are equal. The IIHS says, “These awards identify the best vehicle choices for safety within size categories during a given year. Larger, heavier vehicles generally afford more protection than smaller, lighter ones. Thus, a small car that qualifies for an award might not protect its occupants as well as a bigger vehicle that doesn’t earn the award.”

How much is the Ford Explorer?


Car Buying: What Safety Ratings Should You Care About?

The 2022 Ford Explorer starts at $36,345, but the high-end Platinum trim level is $56,985. The base model 2022 Explorer comes with a turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine with 300 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. That’s matched to a 10-speed automatic transmission. It also has an 8-inch touchscreen that’s compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as a six-speaker sound system.

As you might expect from one of the safest midsize SUVs on the market, the Explorer comes with some important safety features. Every Ford Explorer from the base model and up comes with frontal collision warning, blind-spot monitor, and lane-keeping assist.

The 2022 Ford Explorer is one of the safest midsize SUVs you can buy. Make sure you look at the trim level you’re buying to see what safety features it comes with, and you can always check with the IIHS website to see exactly where that trim level falls as far as safety is concerned. Being informed when car buying can put you at ease when you and your loved ones are in your SUV.