Buying an SUV that’s safe should be one of the most important factors in any buying decision. There are several rating agencies that measure the safety of SUVs, but the one most of us turn to is the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for its unbiased ratings. But, the NHTSA doesn’t test every new car, truck or SUV, and in fact it only picks a few every year to test. Of the top-selling 2022 SUVs, it has rated eight, are they the safest SUVs.
What is the NHTSA safety rating for the safest SUVs?
While the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests almost every car, the NHTSA only chooses a few cars to test every year. For example, the NHTSA has not rated some of the most popular, including the best-selling Ford Bronco yet. For 2022, the NHTSA will crash test 33 new cars, trucks and SUVs. We’ll soon get results on some of the most popular, including the Toyota RAV4 Prime, the Chevy Bolt EV and EUV, the Ford Maverick truck, and others.
One dive into the NHTSA’s website and you’ll get confused. The NHTSA does not give every vehicle a rating, only the most common. And, even when it does test, it doesn’t test every level of every model, so you have to do a deep dive to learn which crash ratings are actually current. For example, the agency tested the 2022 Acura MDX in front-wheel drive trim, and gave it a five-star rating, but, the all-wheel drive version is not rated.
However, of 2022’s 10 best-selling SUVs, the agency has rated eight. Most of them have earned five-star ratings from the NHTSA.
2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee WK
The Jeep Grand Cherokee is the best-selling SUV so far this year. But Jeep is doing an interesting thing in that it’s still selling the previous generation of Grand Cherokee as the WK version new alongside the all-new 2022 Grand Cherokee. So, while the NHTSA lists a five-star rating for the Grand Cherokee, it’s for the WK version, and not the all new version. The all-new Grand Cherokee is an evolution of the Grand Cherokee formula, and it can be ordered in a standard SUV or as an out trail monster in Trialhawk trim.
2022 Ford Explorer
The Ford Explorer earns five stars from the NHTSA. The Ford Explorer was last updated in 2020 and it’s the second-best selling SUV in the country today. While Consumer Reports doesn’t recommend the Ford Explorer, it does earn a “great” reliability rating from J.D. Power, as well as a “great” rating for the driving experience.
2022 Jeep Wrangler
The Jeep Wrangler gets a four-star rating, and while that’s not the top rating, it’s still better than many. The Wrangler is unique in that it’s built for off-roading, and not the road. That means it’s not the most comfortable, or quietest, or fastest SUV, but to legions of fans, it’s a Wrangler or nothing.