A Complete Guide to Kia Safety Ratings

Vehicles across the Kia lineup, like the K5 and Stinger, regularly earn safety accolades from the NHTSA and IIHS. Learn more here!
Written by Drew Waterstreet
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Believe it or not, it's hard to find a Kia model that doesn’t have a five-star safety rating from the NHTSA—the majority of Kia’s lineup ranks remarkably well, making them some of the safest vehicles on the road.
Call it a competitive advantage. Call it high expectations. Whatever you want to call it, Kia prioritizes safety in its vehicle design. 
A brand’s reputation is tied to its standards for safety, and Kia does an incredible job of assessing possible risks on the road to protect its loyal customers. So whether you purchase the
Sorento
or the
K5
, you can drive with confidence for your safety.
The
car insurance
super app
Jerry
is here to give you a complete rundown of the Kias that rank high in terms of safety—it’s not a short list! Also, we can help you find the
best car insurance for your Kia
. So, buckle up, and let’s get started. 
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Are Kias safe in accidents?

Kia is regularly ranked as one of the safest brands in the affordable vehicle market. You’ll find no cut corners in Kia’s commitment to safety design. Continue reading to discover what features make Kia vehicles safe and which models best live up to their reputation.

What makes a Kia safe?

The sleek vehicle designs are cool, but the safety features on Kia models are what really move the sales needle. Let’s take a look at these highly-acclaimed features to see if they back up Kia’s reputation for safety:
  • Strong body design: Across all Kia models, the ultra-high tensile steel body takes up roughly 30% of the vehicle’s entire weight. This rugged design helps the vehicle maintain its shape in the event of a collision or
    rollover
    —otherwise known as crashworthiness.
  • Extensive protection: All Kias come standard with a complete set of airbags, providing safety coverage for all passengers. No spot is left unprotected—you’ll find front and rear side airbags, driver and passenger seat airbags, curtain airbags, and a driver knee airbag.
  • Driver-assist technologies: Anticipating an accident before it even happens is a safety feature in itself. Using driver-assist technologies is like having an automatic co-pilot at all times. In the “Kia Drive Wise” suite, you’ll find smart cruise control, lane-centering, distance maintenance, collision avoidance, blind-spot monitoring, and more!
Combining high-quality structure, protective equipment, and preventative technology helps Kia achieve five-star
safety ratings
on an annual basis. But what does five-star even mean? Let’s find out.

The two safety rating systems you need to know

The two most recognized and regulated ratings for vehicle safety come from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)
  • NHTSA ratings
    are based on a five-star system that’s been in place since 1993. Each vehicle is scored based on various safety categories: frontal crash, rear crash, rollover, and overall score.
  • IIHS ratings
    are based on a four score scale: Good, Acceptable, Marginal, and Poor. The safety rating is determined by six collision tests, headlight evaluation, considerations for crashworthiness, and more.
These ratings carry a lot of weight in the automobile industry—any rating below four stars can start to raise eyebrows. So always give these ratings a good look before purchasing any vehicle, new or used.

Which Kia has the highest safety ratings?

As mentioned earlier, it’s hard to find a Kia model that isn’t well-rated when it comes to safety. But two models rise above the rest! Representing the Kia brand with honor, the K5 and the Stinger were both recognized as a Top Safety Pick+, IIHS’s most highly-regarded accolade.
Let’s get more into detail on these models and other well-ranked vehicles across Kia’s diverse lineup.

2022 Kia K5 safety ratings

Starting price: $23,790
IIHS safety rating: Good (Top Safety Pick+)
NHTSA safety rating: 5 stars overall, 5 stars side, 4 stars front, and 4 stars rollover
The sporty K5 makes no compromises to design or performance, all while exceeding safety expectations—it’s no easy feat to get a Top Safety Pick+ rating! Just to name a few highlights, the K5 is faster than the
BMW 330i
Sedan and is equipped with Kia’s Drive Wise technology. With a reasonable price tag, the K5 is an absolute standout in its class.

2022 Kia Stinger safety ratings

Starting price: $36,290
IIHS safety rating: Good (Top Safety Pick+)
NHTSA safety rating: 5 stars overall, 5 stars side, 4 stars front, and 5 stars rollover
We’d like to adjust the
Stinger
’s catchphrase from “built to thrill” to “built to safely thrill”—and we mean this with all seriousness! The standard 300 horsepower 2.5L turbocharged engine is partnered with an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating. This combination truly gives the driver the best of both worlds when it comes to safety and performance!

2022 Kia Soul safety ratings

Starting price: $19,290
IIHS safety rating: Good (Top Safety Pick with optional front crash prevention and specific headlights)
NHTSA safety rating: 4 stars overall, 5 stars side, 4 stars front, and 4 stars rollover
The style of the
Kia Soul
may not be for everyone, but it is one sturdy box! The advanced safety features offer sufficient protection during an accident and can even help you avoid them altogether.
For a vehicle its size, the Soul has impressive IIHS & NHTSA scores. Smaller cars don’t always have the best crash test ratings, so these ratings can give you some peace of mind whenever you get behind the wheel.

2022 Kia Sportage safety ratings

Starting price: $25,990
IIHS safety rating: Good (Top Safety Pick with optional front crash prevention and specific headlights)
NHTSA safety rating: 5 stars overall, 5 stars side, 4 stars front, and 4 stars rollover
The
Sportage
serves as Kia’s small SUV. The 2022 model does lack a little bit in cargo space and fuel efficiency compared to the competition, but the safety features exceed expectations. Sometimes, that’s all you can ask from your car.
The 2023 model will introduce a new generation of the Sportage. Hopefully, the new model will improve the design deficiencies while maintaining the same safety standard. Fingers crossed!

2022 Kia Sorento safety ratings

Starting price: $29,590
IIHS safety rating: Good (Top Safety Pick with specific headlights)
NHTSA safety rating: 5 stars overall, 5 stars side, 4 stars front, and 4 stars rollover
The
Kia Sorento
is one of the automotive brand's flagship SUV models. And, if you’re going to be front and center, you need to live up to the hype. 
According to the latest safety ratings, the Sorento doesn’t disappoint. This model earned its Top Safety Pick recognition with a long list of driver-assist technologies (including auto emergency braking technology) and top-tier crashworthiness.  
Mix these safety standards with sleek style and innovative technologies, and you got yourself the recipe for an incredible SUV!

2022 Kia Carnival safety ratings

Starting price: $32,300
IIHS safety rating: Good (Top Safety Pick only for vehicles with specific headlights built after March 2021)
NHTSA safety rating: N/A
The
Kia Carnival
is an innovative minivan that prides itself on being family-focused, which means space, entertainment, comfort, and last but not least, safety. 
Driving your family to and from soccer practice doesn’t seem risky, but there’s always the slim potential for a car accident. Luckily, modern safety features ensure that everyone in a vehicle will be protected when disaster strikes. As a Top Safety Pick, the Carnival is undoubtedly up for the challenge!

How you can save money on Kia insurance

Safety ratings and insurance prices have a direct causal relationship—let us elaborate.
First off, driver-assist technologies, like blind-spot monitoring, can help prevent an accident before it ever happens. If you cannot avoid the accident, vehicles with high safety ratings also have solid crashworthiness (the car's ability to protect you). 
However your situation ends up, insurance companies prefer to cover vehicles that can safely mitigate road risk. As a result, drivers with safe cars, like Kias, are usually offered lower premium prices!
But why let the savings stop there? The
Jerry
app can quickly sift through the endless sea of quotes and match you with the most affordable policy. Consider it our little reward for purchasing a Kia and investing in your safety!
Jerry
was so easy to use. A representative texted me my lowest quote, and when I responded yes, Progressive emailed me 2 minutes later with next steps. Highly recommend if you don’t want to look for quotes alone!” —Sayad A.
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