BMW, Honda models among 2010's safest cars

Euro NCAP has released its list of the safest new cars in Europe, based on the results of crash tests it conducted in 2010.

The European car safety testing body named five vehicles that topped the list of each category that it tested, with the BMW 5 Series named best executive category car and the Alfa Romeo Guilietta named the best in the small family category.

The Honda CR-Z was named the safest supermini, the Kia Sportage the safest small off-road 4x4 and the Toyota Verso the safest small MPV.

All of these vehicles achieved a five-star safety rating and came top in their category from the 29 vehicles Europe NCAP tested throughout the year.

An honorable mention was also given to the Suzuki Swift, Kia Venga, BMW X1, VW Sharan/Seat Alhambra, and the Citroen C4, which all exceeded the 80 percent mark in overall score, putting them on the list of best-performing cars of the year.

The worst-performing vehicle was the Chinese-built Landwind CV9, a €14,500 compact MPV which achieved only two stars and was criticized by Euro NCAP in November for lacking a side protection airbag, a head protection device and electronic stability system.

The Citroen Nemo van, which unceremoniously failed the "moose" swerve test conducted by German auto association ADAC in April, gained a low three stars from Euro NCAP, the second lowest rating of 2010.

See the full list of Euro NCAP's tests last year at http://www.euroncap.com

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