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Only one Audi SUV earned a Top Safety Pick Plus award. Safety is one of the most important things when buying a vehicle. Especially when you intend to use it to haul your family around town or on long road trips. Fortunately, each year, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety performs in-depth testing to determine which vehicles are as safe as possible. Only the best of the best earn themselves a Top Safety Pick award. Those that are even better than the best get the Top Safety Pick Plus award. If you’re interested in a luxury compact SUV from Audi, there’s only one exceptionally safe option: the 2022 Audi Q5.

What is a Top Safety Pick Plus award?

According to, the Top Safety Pick Plus award is the IIHS’ highest designation. Vehicles have to earn good ratings in six “crashworthiness evaluations: driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, original side, roof strength and head restraint tests.” In addition, vehicles need to earn high marks in front crash prevention and headlight performance.

IIHS says the Audi SUV that earned the TSPP award has a standard crash prevention system, earning it a “superior” rating in vehicle-to-vehicle tests and an advanced rating in daytime vehicle-to-pedestrian tests. Headlights are less clear, but good-rated LED projector headlights or acceptable-rated LED reflector headlights are enough for the TSSP award.

Which Audi SUV is the safest?

Audi Q5 in silver at an auto show. Only one Audi SUV earned a top safety pick plus award.
Audi Q5 | AFP via Getty Images

Furthermore, the safest Audi SUV is the 2022 Audi Q5. This compact luxury SUV scored high enough on all the IIHS testing to earn itself a Top Safety Pick Plus award. Starting at $44,495, the Q5 is one of the most luxurious models in its class. In addition, it’s surprisingly affordable for such a well-equipped SUV. According to Edmunds, a few advanced driver aids are standard on the Premium base model. For example, frontal collision mitigation, blind-spot monitor, lane departure warning, and front and rear parking sensors.

The publication also mentions that all three trim levels are available with rear side-impact airbags. Although optional, we think it’s excellent to have these available for all versions of the Q5. Even in its fully-loaded form, the 2022 Audi Q5 is one of the most affordable luxury compact SUVs. A Prestige model costs $55,195 but is very well-equipped.

2022 Audi Q5 Premium Plus has more driver-assist features

2023 Q5 interior with brown seats pictured is the inside of the luxury compact SUV.
Audi Q5 interior | Audi

The Updated IIHS Top Safety Pick and Top Safety Pick Plus Criteria for 2022

Although the 2022 Audi Q5 base model is affordable and the top trim is well-equipped, experts like Edmunds recommend the mid-tier model, Premium Plus. One of the highlights of this Q5 is that it gets additional driver-assist features. Starting at $49,495, buyers get the standard tech mentioned earlier, plus adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, traffic jam assist, and a surround-view camera system.

Other standard features include 19-inch wheels, a panoramic sunroof, simulated leather trim, a digital instrument display, a power-adjustable steering wheel with hands-on detection, a wireless charging pad with a signal booster, and more. Optionally, Premium Plus buyers can get front sport seats, ventilated front seats, and manual rear-side window shades. Each of these Q5s has the Convenience package as standard equipment.

1 Audi SUV earned a Top Safety Pick Plus award

In conclusion, only one Audi SUV earned a Top Safety Pick Plus award. If you’re interested in a luxury compact SUV, one of the safest options is the 2022 Audi Q5. As a result, we’d recommend buying the Premium Plus trim level. It comes with more advanced driver aids than the already well-equipped base model, improving safety even more. Further, the optional rear side-impact airbags are a welcomed addition if you’re willing to spend the extra cash.