Search vehicle safety ratings.

NHTSA's 5-Star Safety Ratings help consumers make smart decisions about safety 
when purchasing a vehicle. You can also search ratings by manufacturer.

Check your car seat safety

NHTSA’s Ease-of-Use Ratings let you compare how easy it is to use certain car seat features so you can make informed decisions about the right car seat.

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Check your tires' safety

Uniform Tire Quality Grading Systems (UTQGS) ratings allow 
consumers to compare tire features.

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Buying a new car?

Purchase a vehicle with safety in mind. Use NHTSA's Vehicle Comparison Tool to see 5-Star Safety Ratings and recall information at a glance.

Timeline of NHTSA's
5-Star Safety Ratings program

Ratings standards and crash safety have advanced

Keeping safety in mind during the buying process

Download this brochure to get more information about NHTSA's 5-star safety program and our testing and rating milestones.

Recommended Safety Technologies

Look for vehicles with these safety technologies. These features have met NHTSA performance tests.

Learn about safety technologies

Other Safety Equipment

Other safety equipment provides protection and reliability on the road. When purchasing a vehicle, check for these features.

Frequently Asked Questions

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) created the 5-Star Safety Ratings Program to provide consumers with information about the crash protection and rollover safety of new vehicles beyond what is required by Federal law. One star is the lowest rating; five stars is the highest. More stars equal safer cars.

Yes, other organizations test crash vehicles, but NHTSA is the only organization that rates rollover resistance, in addition to frontal and side crashworthiness.

Yes, some vehicle star ratings that were rated higher under the older Safety Ratings system may be lower under the new 5-Star Safety Ratings system. However, it does not mean that your current 4- or 5-star vehicle is unsafe. Due to more vigorous testing, a vehicle that once received 5 stars under the old system, may receive a lower score under the new system, even if no changes have been made to the model.

NHTSA’s 5-Star Ratings Program has a limited budget and must concentrate its ratings on front and side-impact crashes that are responsible for the highest percentage of deaths and serious injuries.

NHTSA categorizes vehicles by class and “curb” weight. Curb weight is the weight of a vehicle with standard equipment including the maximum capacity of fuel, oil, coolant, and air conditioning. Passenger cars are further subdivided.

  • Passenger cars mini (PC/Mi) (1,500–1,999 lbs.)
  • Passenger cars light (PC/L) (2,000–2,499 lbs.)
  • Passenger cars compact (PC/C) (2,500–2,999 lbs.)
  • Passenger cars medium (PC/Me) (3,000–3,499 lbs.)
  • Passenger cars heavy (PC/H) (3,500 lbs. and over )
  • Sport utility vehicles (SUV)
  • Pickup trucks (PU) Vans (VAN)

Side crash rating results can be compared across all classes because all vehicles are hit with the same force by the same moving barrier or pole.

Rollover ratings can also be compared across all classes. Frontal crash rating results can only be compared to other vehicles in the same class and whose weight is plus or minus 250 pounds of the vehicle being rated. This is because a frontal crash rating into a fixed barrier represents a crash between two vehicles of the same weight.

This symbol alerts consumers to a safety concern the government has about the vehicle. That concern can include: structural failure or some type of unintended performance of a vehicle component such as a fuel leakage or a door opening. Please note that safety concerns are NOT part of the calculation for an Overall Vehicle Score. A vehicle can have a high star rating, but still have a safety concern. However, if a safety concern is identified, the symbol will appear in the correct crash category and Overall Vehicle Score area.

Safercar TV:
Driven by Safety

For more than 50 years, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been working to keep people safe on the road. Learn more about what we do and how we enable everyone to live safer.

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