VW Golf: safest car of 2009
The top five cars all achieved an overall five-star rating, which means they performed well in every category, including adult and child occupant protection, pedestrian protection and safety assist.
Two hybrid-engined models, the Honda Insight and Toyota Prius, came second and third.
Bottom of the table of 33 cars tested in 2009 were the Suzuki Alto and Toyota Urban Cruiser, both of which received just three stars.
Standards are getting tougher
This year standards are to be tightened for tests published after March 3.
The threshold for a car to achieve five stars rises from 75% to 80% in adult occupant protection, and from 70% to 75% for child occupant protection. Cars will also have to score 40%, rather than 25% for pedestrian protection.
Five safest cars tested in 2009
1. VW Golf
2. Honda Insight
3. Toyota Prius
4. Hyundai i20
5=. Toyota Avensis
5=. Volvo XC60
5=. Vauxhall Astra
The full facts