What Car? and Thatcham Research will crown Britain’s safest car at the annual What Car? Car of the Year Awards ceremony on January 13, 2016.
Contenders for the Safety Award will be assessed for their Adult Occupant Protection, Safety Assist, and Child Occupant Protection. Competitors must also have been awarded a five-star Euro NCAP crash test rating, and have an Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) system fitted.
Three cars will be selected from the shortlist by Thatcham Research and an independent panel of safety experts, before being announced at the What Car? Car of the Year Awards.
What Car?’s editorial director, Jim Holder, said: "Safety is one of the key concerns for new car buyers, particularly if the vehicle in question is to be used as the main mode of family transport.
"What Car? believes it important that such a key consideration is reflected in our Car of the Year Awards.
"Not only does the Safety Award highlight the incredible, yet often unsung, work manufacturers do, it also allows us to both commend and encourage it."
Matthew Avery, Director of Research at Thatcham Research, added: "The Safety Award is a unique way for consumers to select safer cars and identify the best of the best. Understanding how they are protected inside the car in the event of a crash, and how accidents can actually be avoided in the first place.
"It is this new crash avoidance technology that will help address the growing number of pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists killed and injured on our roads every year. And why from January 2016, Euro NCAP will be assessing cars for their ability to automatically avoid pedestrian crashes."
Full Safety Award shortlist: