Is Subaru’s safety rating on small SUVs better than Hyundai’s?

Subaru and Hyundai both received top safety honors for their small SUVs from the IIHS. The average cost of SUV auto insurance is 18% higher than normal vehicles.

Free Auto Insurance Comparison

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

Full Bio →

Written by

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, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like and Safeco. He reviews content, ensuring that ex...

Full Bio →

Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Nov 1, 2021

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident auto insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We are not affiliated with any one auto insurance provider and cannot guarantee quotes from any single provider. Our partnerships don’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own. To compare quotes from many different companies please enter your ZIP code on this page to use the free quote tool. The more quotes you compare, the more chances to save.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

Things to remember...

  • Subaru Forester is one of the few vehicles that had the majority “good” grades. Its crash performance, crash prevention, and latches prove it is a very striking vehicle
  • Hyundai Tucson has the best possible score in crash performance, including the passenger-side small overlap test, as well as great scores for every other category
  • The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety comes up with the ways that these categories can be evaluated

SUVs are a class of vehicles so popular nowadays that it might be impossible to replace them. This is because of wide-ranging classes that include the small types, midsize vehicles, and the large-scale SUV.

Features that distinguish them from other forms of transportation are very modern cabins, spaciousness and comfort, and the strength of a V6 engine.

Use our FREE quote tool to compare auto insurance rates today!

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

Growing popularity comes with its shortcomings in the eyes of any manufacturer. This is because the vehicle must pass plenty of tests in order to get their approval from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

This company has operated in this field since 1959 and is funded by large insurance companies that want to assure drivers only have access to the high-quality cars.

The models are reviewed in three areas that include crashworthiness, crash prevention, and child anchors. Each category is further broken down and has various ratings that will be discussed in more detail soon.

Free Auto Insurance Comparison

Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Subaru Forester Versus Hyundai Tuscon


The Institute’s review on crashworthiness abilities of these two models contained many “good” ratings. The basic five sub-categories (front small and moderate overlap, side and roof impact, and head restraints) for both models were rated good.

The passenger side overlap, the latest test that the IIHS came up with, resulted in another good score for Tucson and a marginal rating for Forester.

The impressive ratings go well beyond the descriptive terms or numbers with which they were rated.

For example, Hyundai’s model received its perfect score here due to its ability to maintain a safe survival space well. The airbags were also deployed so efficiently that the driver’s head avoided every contact with larger objects that could cause an injury.

Similarly, Subaru Forester only exposed the dummy to minimal risk of injury to the lower body. The reason why its passenger-side overlap test was only marginal came from its inability to reduce the risk of injury to someone’s legs.

Overall, the models that are compared both showcased extraordinary capabilities that speak volumes.

Crash Prevention and Mitigation

To make the final evaluation even harder to do, this category resulted in another tie with each vehicle getting 6/6 points. This means that both cars slowed down well during the 12 and the 25-mph tests. Also, there was no lack of the forward collision warning.

Not only did Tucson and Forester slow down, but both collisions were also completely avoided without any issues in reducing the speed to zero miles per hour when the danger was detected.

Hence, the cars’ auto-brake and motion sensors can hardly get any better.

Under this category, headlights made no real difference between the two. This is because, once more, the ratings were acceptable for each car.

Some issues arose on the gradual left curve Hyundai and Subaru, which is why the grade was lowered to the second-to-best level.

Child Seat Anchors (LATCH)

Lastly, what may seem like an easy test comes as a very important part of the review. Many people would give up their SUVs if those did not facilitate their children’s seats somewhere in the back.

That is why the Institute scrutinizes cars in this category just like any other.

Hyundai received an acceptable rating because its latches required too much force for someone to use them. Similarly, Subaru got the same score as its anchors fell too deep in the seats.

Ultimately, however, the fact that both vehicles were equally “lacking” means that there was no winner to be declared.


2017 Top Safety Pick and/or 2017 Top Safety Pick+

The requirements for a Top Safety Pick include perfect crashworthiness with an acceptable or better crash prevention.

In this case, this recognition is irrelevant, simply because both cars did so well that they qualified the Top Safety Pick Plus award.

Top Safety Pick Plus is dedicated to those who satisfy the aforementioned requirements and have at least acceptable headlights on top of that. Both vehicles met these standards and won the highest achievement.

The Winner

Objectively, declaring the winner is not possible. One could say that Subaru lost because of the one score that was different, the passenger-side overlap test but would be very unfair since the test has been out for less than a month.

Some models, like Hyundai, do need to be praised for their hard work in an area that they did not even know will be tested.

At the end of the day, there is no real winner because acknowledging something like that would not be fair to either brand that did outstandingly well.

Free Auto Insurance Comparison

Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Get Your Insurance

In order to stay safe on the road, one must ensure that their property will be covered under the applicable and lawful insurance policy.

To find the best option, people can do the heavy research themselves or get it done by an outsider who might be experienced in the field.

An example of those outsiders are companies that compare insurance offers based on factors such as premiums, deductibles, coverage, and more.

They will usually post their results in a way that people can compare them with other companies in real-time, and one can see the comprehensive data about an option in a single glance.

Buying the liability coverage can hardly get any better! Use our FREE quote tool to compare auto insurance rates today!

Free Auto Insurance Comparison

Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption