The Volvo XC90 has been named the winner of the 2016 What Car? Car of the Year Safety Award.
The 2016 Safety Award, awarded on 13 January, was judged in conjunction with Thatcham Research, who used the event to renew calls for the further deployment of Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) technology.
The Honda Jazz and Toyota Avensis were named runners up from a 17-car shortlist for the Award.
The contenders were assessed against factors including adult and child occupant protection, pedestrian protection and additional safety innovations including new collision avoidance technologies.
Peter Shaw, Thatcham’s chief executive, said: “It is a great pleasure to be able to formally recognise Volvo, as well as Honda and Toyota, for the excellent safety performance of their vehicles.
“As the clear winner of the 2016 What Car? Car of the Year Safety Award, the Volvo XC90 has an outstanding complement of active and passive safety features that affords drivers, passengers and other road users the highest levels of protection currently available.”
All of the shortlisted cars had earned the Euro NCAP five-star crash test rating and are fitted as standard with AEB technology, something which Thatcham says should be standard on all new cars. The research centre is also calling for further action to ensure Britain sees maximum benefit from safety technologies available now, but not yet fully embraced.
Peter Shaw added: “Like all of the 17 cars in the final reckoning, the Volvo XC90, Honda Jazz and Toyota Avensis gained top ratings in crash testing, but just as importantly they are fitted as standard with AEB, a technology that Thatcham Research believes is key to reducing crashes and saving lives on British roads.
“When you have the chance for everyone to gain from the inclusion of a life-saving technology that has been shown in studies to reduce the likelihood of a front-to-rear crash by almost 40%, you simply cannot afford to miss the opportunity.”