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The safest cars in Australia

The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) has announced the new Ford Mondeo, Toyota Prius V and Lexus NX have all achieved a maximum five-star safety rating - this applies to the vehicles' current variants as well.

Ford Mondeo

National Roads and Motorists Association (NRMA) vehicle safety expert Jack Haley said the new Ford Mondeo received an outstanding score.

It boasts an extensive list of standard safety features. These include side head-protecting (curtain) airbags for front and second row seats, inflatable rear seat belts, smart key, trailer stability control and automatic emergency call.

According to ANCAP, the car scored 36.07 out of a possible 37 to achieve the 5 star rating.

"We are pleased that all of these technologies are standard for 2015 Mondeos sold in Australia," said Mr Haley.

The family car - Toyota Prius V

The seven-seater hybrid Toyota Prius V did incredibly well in a series of rigorous physical crash tests by ANCAP. It achieved a total score of 35.48 out of 37 and earned a maximum 5 star rating for all models built from 2012.

ANCAP Chief Executive Officer, Mr Nicholas Clarke said with all its safety features, Prius V is an ideal family car.

"It has side head-protection (curtain airbags) and seat belt reminders for all three rows, reversing camera, and provides excellent pedestrian protection," he said.

A statement released by the NRMA confirms that the vehicle is the first people mover in Australia to be receive the maximum rating. This is an achievement for Toyota, which now boasts a range of 5-star options across all its vehicles. It is also the only model out of the top three that was rated highest for pedestrian safety.

The reliable Lexus NX

All variants of the Lexus NX launched late last year also meet the same 5 star level of safety, scoring 35.39 out of 37.

Higher priced variants of the vehicle offer even more safety features. For example, autonomous emergency braking system and lane departure warning are available only in higher-specification models in the range.

About ANCAP recommendations

ANCAP aims to provide up-to-date advice and reliable information on the safety level a car offers to its passengers and pedestrians.

The body revises the safety standards on a regular basis. All vehicles judged receive a date stamp based on the year they were assessed. This means at any point in time consumers can use the star rating system to ensure that the car is up to standard for that year.

These three top models also qualify for a 2015 ANCAP date stamp.

"With ANCAP's annual increases to requirements, ANCAP reminds consumers to look for two simple things when buying their next car. First, look for 5 stars. Second, look for a model which has the latest ANCAP date stamp. That way you can be assured you're buying one of the safest cars possible," said Mr Clarke.

The body is supported by all Australian and New Zealand motoring clubs, the Australian and New Zealand governments, Australian state and territory governments, the Victorian Transport Accident Commission, NRMA Insurance and the FIA Foundation.

Vehicle safety is not yet a feature used in determining CTP green slip premiums in NSW.