Since 2006, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has awarded Top Safety Picks to cars in each size category. They look at front crash prevention, headlight ratings, roof strength, and more. Each of these Kia models received a top score of six points for front crash prevention, making them the safest Kia cars within their weight and size class.
2019 Kia Sorento
The safest Kia mid-size crossover is the 2019 Kia Sorento. This seven-passenger vehicle is packed with high-tech safety features, like advanced driver assistance, lane-keeping assistance, and collision warnings. In fact, driver assistance vehicle technology may be able to prevent 1.6 million crashes per year, according to Carnegie Mellon University.
Sorento drivers can choose between 290 hp, 3.3-liter V6 with an updated eight-speed automatic transmission or the 185-hp, 2.4-liter four-cylinder power train. Consumer Reports tested the 2019 Kia Sorento with a V6 engine and found the ride to be quiet and smooth. It praised the model for its responsive handling and very easy-to-use controls.
2020 Kia Soul
The 2020 Kia Soul is a completely new model with more stylish features while keeping its funky shape. Its safety ratings stand out, as it received the highest IIHS rating of “Top Safety Pick Plus.” The 2020 Soul earned good ratings in all six crash tests, has a good headlight rating, and is available with two optional front crash prevention systems.
This subcompact is available with advanced safety features like blind-spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, forward collision avoidance, lane-keeping assist, and lane-change assist. It’s worth noting that the 2020 Kia Soul is safer than the previous generation of Soul vehicles, which only earned an acceptable rating in the passenger-side small overlap front test.
2019 Kia Forte
If you’re in the market for a safe compact four-door sedan, then the 2019 Kia Forte is an excellent choice at around $17,500. While anti-lock brakes and electronic stability control are standard for all cars, the Kia Forte goes a step further to include lane-keeping assistance, lane departure warning, and driver attention warning, which detects drowsy or inattentive drivers.
Consider the high-performance HID projector headlights once only available in luxury vehicles. Now, the Kia Forte has earned a top rating for including this option for all drivers.
2019 Kia Optima
The 2019 Optima is available in LX, S, EX, and an SX model equipped with adaptive headlights, keyless ignition, and an available surround-view camera system.
With a superior rating in front crash prevention, the 2019 Kia Optima is available with an advanced driver-assist and safety package that includes high-beam assist, autonomous emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, a forward-collision warning system, and a lane-departure warning system. Plus, the NHTSA awarded the 2019 Kia Optima a five-star rating for driver side injury protection and overall roll-over protection.
2019 Kia Stinger
For a small luxury car, the 2019 Kia Stinger was rated Superior by IIHS. This high-performance sedan departs from the usual Kia offerings with quad oval exhaust pipes, prominent fenders, a vented hood, and a wide stance. The Stinger comes with all the latest safety technology you’d expect in a vehicle priced over $30,000.
Blind-spot monitoring is standard, while a surround-view camera system is optional. With sleek lines and a generous interior, the 2019 Kia Stinger is available with smart cruise control, forward-collision avoidance assistance, a front-collision warning system, lane-keeping assist, lane departure warning, blind-spot warning with lane-change assist, and rear cross-traffic collision warning.
2019 Kia Niro
If you’re in the market for a crossover vehicle, the 2019 Niro is Kia’s first offering as a standard or plug-in hybrid electric car — a competitor for the Toyota Prius. First introduced into the U.S. market last year, the Niro has maintained its Top Safety Pick Plus rating.
Advanced safety features include forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, parking sensors, pedestrian detection, lane change assist, rear cross-traffic alert, and adaptive cruise control. This crossover even scored exceptionally high safety marks overseas.