IIHS: Solid rear-passenger protection boosts Hyundai Ioniq 5 to highest award

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By Car Brand Experts

Hyundai Ioniq 5 Achieves Top Safety Rating Thanks to Rear-Passenger Protection

The latest assessment from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has elevated the 2024 Hyundai Ioniq 5 to the prestigious TOP SAFETY PICK+ status due to its stellar rear-passenger protection performance. Let’s delve into the details of the evaluation and see how Hyundai’s other models fared in comparison.

Hyundai’s Safety Ratings Overview

Hyundai Ioniq 5

The 2024 Hyundai Ioniq 5, an electric small SUV, secured the TOP SAFETY PICK+ accolade, primarily due to a commendable rating in the updated moderate overlap front test and solid rear-passenger protection. It demonstrated excellent shielding for rear occupants, significantly reducing the risk of head, neck, or chest injuries.

Hyundai Santa Fe

In contrast, the Santa Fe, a midsize SUV, received limitations in back seat protection. The assessment revealed issues with the second-row restraints, increasing the likelihood of head, neck, and chest injuries for rear passengers.

Hyundai Sonata

The Sonata, a midsize car, faced even more significant challenges during testing, with a high probability of head, neck, and chest injuries for second-row occupants, mirroring the concerns found in the Santa Fe.

Common Criteria for Safety Picks

For both TOP SAFETY PICK and TOP SAFETY PICK+ distinctions, vehicles must excel in various tests, including the small overlap front test, updated side test, and boast acceptable- or good-rated headlights across all configurations to ensure comprehensive protection for passengers.

Additionally, a good score in the revised pedestrian front crash prevention evaluation is mandated, underscoring Hyundai’s commitment to enhancing safety features across its lineup.


Hyundai’s commitment to bolstering passenger safety is evident through the comprehensive testing conducted by IIHS. While the Ioniq 5 shines brightly with its TOP SAFETY PICK+ rating, there is room for improvement in the Santa Fe and Sonata to enhance rear-passenger protection further.

For more details on Hyundai’s safety ratings and the IIHS assessment, please refer to the IIHS official source.


1. What propelled the Hyundai Ioniq 5 to achieve the TOP SAFETY PICK+ status?

The Hyundai Ioniq 5′s exceptional rear-passenger protection and a strong performance in the moderate overlap front test were key factors in securing the TOP SAFETY PICK+ award.

2. What were the main shortcomings identified in the Hyundai Santa Fe and Hyundai Sonata during the safety assessment?

Both the Hyundai Santa Fe and Sonata exhibited issues with rear-passenger protection, with concerns regarding head, neck, and chest injuries for second-row occupants.

3. What are the essential criteria for vehicles to earn the TOP SAFETY PICK or TOP SAFETY PICK+ designation?

Vehicles must demonstrate excellent performance in various tests, including small overlap front and updated side tests, along with featuring headlights rated as acceptable or good across all trim levels to qualify for either safety designation.

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