ARLINGTON, Virginia — The 2015 Audi Q5 midsize luxury SUV earned the 2015 Top Safety Pick+ award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety after its structure was improved for protection in small-overlap front crashes.
The award and the "good" rating in the small-overlap test apply to Q5s built after January. The test is designed to replicate what happens when the front corner of a vehicle collides with another vehicle or an object like a tree or utility pole.
"Vehicles that have come off the line since that date have a reinforced front end and occupant compartment," said the Institute in a statement on Thursday.
It is the Institute's highest rating.
The "plus" is awarded to vehicles with an optional front crash prevention system that earns an "advanced" or "superior" rating from the Institute. The Q5's system earned an "advanced" rating.
The optional Driver Assistance package in the Q5 includes Audi braking guard, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go functionality, Audi dynamic steering and drive select controls. The package is available on Q5s with the 3.0-liter TFSI and 3.0-liter TDI engines.
"When the test was performed on the Q5, the driver's space was maintained reasonably well, with maximum intrusion of 4 inches at the lower door hinge pillar," the Institute said. "Measures taken from the dummy indicate a low risk of injuries in a crash of this severity."
Five stars is the highest rating.
The 2015 Q5 received four stars in the front crash test, five stars in the side crash test and four stars in the rollover crash test.
All 2015 Audi Q5s come with stability and traction control, front side airbags and side curtain airbags. Rear side airbags are a stand-alone option, while the Technology package includes parking sensors, a rearview camera and a blind-spot warning system.
The 2015 Q5 is on sale now at Audi dealerships. The 2016 Audi Q5 arrives at dealerships in June.
Edmunds says: Some important safety information for car shoppers considering the 2015-'16 Audi Q5.