Three Audi Vehicles Earn Top Safety Pick Plus Award

audi-a3-2022-08-exterior-rear-white 2022 Audi A3 | photo by Christian Lantry

A trio of Audi vehicles has earned Top Safety Pick Plus status, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s highest designation. The models are the A3 compact luxury sedan and the Q4 e-Tron and Q4 e-Tron Sportback  electric SUVs. While both model-year 2022 and 2023 versions of the SUVs qualify, only model-year 2023 versions of the A3 earned the award due to headlight discrepancies.

Related: IIHS Toughens Up Crash Tests; Many SUVs Fail

To qualify for the award, the vehicles earned good ratings in six IIHS crashworthiness  evaluations: driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, original side, roof strength and head restraint tests. They also needed to earn high marks for front crash prevention and headlight performance.

IIHS says each vehicle comes with a standard front crash prevention system that earned the agency’s superior rating in vehicle-to-vehicle tests and an advanced rating in daytime vehicle-to-pedestrian tests.

Regarding headlights, the results aren’t as clear. Model-year 2022 and 2023 versions of the electric SUVs are available with either good-rated LED projector headlights or acceptable-rated LED reflector headlights, depending on the trim level; this qualifies them for the Top Safety Pick Plus award. On the A3, however, good-rated headlights are standard across all trims, but only on model-year 2023 versions. The compact sedan was redesigned for 2022, but IIHS says that poor ratings for two available headlight systems prevented the model-year 2022 A3 from earning the Plus designation.

The trio of 2023 models joins several other Audi vehicles on the Top Safety Pick Plus list, including the 2023 A4 sedan, 2022 A7 hatchback and 2022 Q5 SUV.

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News Editor Jennifer Geiger joined the automotive industry in 2003, much to the delight of her Corvette-obsessed dad. Jennifer is an expert reviewer, certified car-seat technician and mom of three. She wears a lot of hats — many of them while driving a minivan. Email Jennifer Geiger

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