Is Nissan’s safety rating on small SUVs better than Fiat’s?

Which is safer? Fiat 500X or Nissan Rogue. Rogue is a top 5, while the Fiat is a top IIHS safety pick. Safety features can lower auto insurance rates by up to 8%.

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Mathew B. Sims is Editor-in-Chief and has authored, edited, and contributed to several books. He has been working in the insurance industry ensuring content is accurate for consumers who are searching for the best policies and rates...

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance...

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Reviewed byDaniel Walker
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UPDATED: Apr 21, 2020

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Things to remember...
  • The Nissan Rogue is a Top Safety Pick Plus award winner
  • The Fiat 500X is a Top Safety Pick winner
  • Both vehicles qualify for safety discounts on insurance policies


Finding the right small SUV isn’t always a challenge, but it does require knowing precisely what you want. What’s on your list of must-have features might not be on the list of another, and it’s not always as easy as you might imagine to find precisely the vehicle you want on the lot when you’re ready to shop.

Small SUVs such as the Nissan Rogue and the Fiat 500X are popular because they’re both sporty, sleek, and safe.

Both of these small SUVs have excellent safety ratings issued by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which means both make you eligible for some serious insurance discounts.

Insurance companies use these ratings by the IIHS and other crash-test companies to determine which vehicles are safe, which are not, and which ones are least expensive to repair. Make sure to compare rates with our free quote tool above! 

A vehicle that performs well in crash tests is one that’s easy to repair, and that makes it less expensive to insure.

What are the IIHS safety ratings

The IIHS has a long list of safety rating features, and they take them very seriously. The IIHS buys every new car that is introduced in a model year and crashes them, as you can see in the video above.

They do this to determine how much the car can handle, how safe it’s going to keep passengers, and how well it’s made and able to avoid accidents.

They’re all tested in three main categories. Crashworthiness, crash avoidance and mitigation, and child seat anchors. Each one is then broken down into small subcategories.

  • Crashworthiness Small Overlap Front, Moderate Overlap Front, Side, Roof, Seats and Head Restraints
  • Crash Avoidance and Mitigation Front Crash Prevention and Headlights
  • Child Seat Anchors– Latch

The IIHS gives each of these subcategories, save for the front crash prevention category, a letter grade. These grades are as follows:

  • “G” good
  • “A” acceptable
  • “M” marginal
  • “P” poor

The front crash prevention category is graded, but not with a letter. It’s given a high score of superior, a good score of advanced, or a poor score of basic.

Once the ratings are in, the IIHS is able to determine which vehicles are safest and which ones are eligible for safety awards.

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IIHS Safety Awards

The IIHS provides two safety awards to vehicles. The first is the Top Safety Pick award. A vehicle that receives this award is going to cost less to insure due to the strict safety standards of the IIHS.

A vehicle must have all “G” ratings in the crashworthiness category as well as a score of advanced or higher in the front crash prevention category.

To earn the Top Safety Pick Plus award, the vehicle must also have headlights that earn an “A” or better rating. Without this, the vehicle is not eligible for this award.

It’s also important to keep in mind not all vehicles are completely tested at all times. Some are missing scores in certain categories, and that means they’re not awarded. It does not, however, mean the vehicle is not safe to drive.

Nissan Rogue vs. Fiat 500X

Both vehicles earned safety awards in the 2017 model year, which is excellent news if you’re looking for an exceptionally safe vehicle.

However, it’s the Nissan Rogue with the best safety ratings. This vehicle earned a Top Safety Pick Plus rating, and the Fiat earned a Top Safety Pick rating.

Nissan Rogue

Small and sleek, this fun SUV earned “G” ratings in all crashworthiness categories, the highest possible score in the front crash prevention category, and an “A” for headlights.

The only place it did not do well is the latch system where it earned an “M” rating for marginal. Keep in mind this is only important if you have children you drive around regularly.

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Fiat 500X

Like the Nissan, the Fiat did well in all crashworthiness categories. It earned an advanced score in the front crash prevention category, which means it’s a great vehicle to drive.

The “P” rating for headlights is what stopped this vehicle from earning the highest safety honors in 2017, and the latch is as marginal on this vehicle as it is on the Nissan.

Insuring Your Safe SUV

Now that you know the Nissan Rogue is just a little safer than the Fiat 500X, you must know a few other ways you can earn some great discounts on your insurance policy when you shop around for rates.

Driving a vehicle with excellent safety ratings is always helpful for discounts, but you have additional options, too.

Be sure to discuss with your agent all the safety features your car is equipped with. Many offer discounts to drivers. If you are a student, be sure your grades are good for better rates.

Keep your driving record clean to earn the best rates, and ask your current insurance company if you can renew your current policy a bit early. It’s less expensive to do this in combination with safety discounts you get driving either of these small SUVs.

Make sure you compare rates with our free quote tool below now! Just enter your ZIP code and start comparing rates now!

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