Top 5 safest hybrids (Prius came in last)

Update: While I stand by my methods, you may want to look at a more updated ranking which just lists a single hybrid as safest in class. I think fair criticisms of this article were 1. not enough cars were ranked and 2. cars while they of course can, there is no universally accepted way to compare them out of class.

So, you want to buy a hybrid to save the planet but you want one that will save you if there is an accident? AutoblogGreen did some number crunching for you. Here is a list of the top 5 safest Hybrids for 2007 models, 1 being the most safe and 5 the least safe. The results just might shock you.
  1. Toyota Camry Hybrid 4-Dr w/SAB
  2. Honda Civic Hybrid 4-DR w/SAB
  3. Ford Escape Hybrid 4-DR
  4. Mercury Mariner Hybrid 4-DR
  5. Toyota Prius 4-DR w/SAB
You might be surprised to see the Prius, the most fuel efficient hybrid, the lowest ranked. This ranking is from data obtained from safer car. Go below the fold to find out exactly how I made the list.

[Source: NHTSA, EPA]
First, I took a look at this list. It's the Fuel Economy Leaders: 2007 Model Year. There were five hybrids on that list. Then I looked up each of those cars at safer car. The crash test for the Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner did not include side air bags. I think they did that because it's optional and not standard. There were no roll over ratings for the Camry, Escape and Mariner. So I ignored roll over ratings.

So you can say, this is really just a fair comparison of 3 hybrids front and side crash rating. I am being as open as possible because I think you should know everything I did. Anyway, I added up the star ratings. Then proceeded to rank them. These numbers are the star ratings for front driver, passenger and side front and rear seat.

Prius 4454
Civic 5545
Camry 5555
Escape 4455
Mariner 4455

Camry is the clear winner with all 5's. Civic a close second with one 4 for side front seat. Escape and Mariner actually tied. So if you like, you can have Mariner ranked 3 and Escape 4. Last but not least, Prius. Three 4 ratings. Only a 5 for side front seat. So, that's how I did it. Even if you have real problems with the lack of a roll over comparison or the two SUVs test lacking side air bags, I hope you took something away from this.

Choosing a car is a very interesting process. We each have our own way. Some of us like to know lots of information. Some just buy on the way it looks (me). After fuel efficiency, I thought safety was the next best thing to consider and I had not seen a list like this, so I wrote this article. Please post in comments criticisms, your searches on hybrid safety and what you consider when buying a car.

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