These cars and trucks took the top spots in 2006.
Subaru Legacy
Safest car
Subaru Legacy
Source: IIHS and NHTSA

With top crash test ratings, electronic stability control for added security and an inherently stable design, the Legacy comes out on top.

This year, when the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named its "Top Safety Picks," it required that the vehicles have electronic stability control.

Analysis of actual crash statistics by the Insurance Institute and the government's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has shown that stability control, in both cars and SUVs, significantly reduces dangerous single-vehicle wrecks. Auto safety advocates are calling it the most significant safety advance since seatbelts.

But ESC can't do everything, so it's still better to have an inherently stable vehicle along with ESC to prevent loss of control.

All the vehicles in the IIHS "Top Picks" list got, as required for the award, top ratings in the Institute's own side, front and rear impact tests. Except for the Saab 9-3 and Audi A6, all also received top scores in NHTSA's crash tests. (The A6 and 9-3 were not tested by NHTSA.) But the Legacy also scored highest in NHTSA's vehicle stability ratings.

Safest

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Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.