Are Bigger or Smaller Cars Safer in a Collision?

Collisions are never a good thing, whether you have a big or small car. It can cause severe damage to your car, and it will put your life in danger. In some cases, the size of your vehicle will have a difference in the aftermath of the collision.

This includes the cost of repairs and the effect of the accident on your well-being. But the biggest question is this: is a small or bigger car safer during collisions?

To be fair, no car is ideal when it comes to collisions. Unfortunately, it’s still a high-impact situation that will result in damages. But for the sake of discussion, the following are the things you should know:

Newer cars are safer

Whether it’s big or small, newer cars are safer than old models. This is due to technological advancements that boost the safety of vehicles during a collision. Also, modern vehicles have undergone intensive crash tests to ensure their durability during accidents.

Modern cars have electronic stability control, which helps stabilize the vehicle when it spins. It also comes in handy when a car rolls or goes out of control during a collision.

Moreover, newer cars are equipped with better airbags. This includes side-curtain, side-rear, and front airbags.

Backup cameras and backup sensors also help prevent rear-end collisions on modern vehicles. This is paired with a blind spot warning that utilizes a special sensor to alert the driver.

The thing with bigger cars

During a collision, bigger and heavier cars can absorb force better than smaller counterparts. Bigger cars have larger hoods that will minimize the damage during head-on collisions.

This larger ‘crumple zone’ will prevent the person in the driver’s seat from getting crushed. Compared to smaller cars, this benefit is slightly lower.

However, we also have to factor in the size of the car you’re colliding with. If you’re head-on with a trailer truck, you’ll surely suffer from serious damages. This is whether you’re riding in a small or big vehicle.

Considering momentum

While bigger cars absorb force well, it also has higher momentum. This means that if a big car collides with a smaller vehicle, the latter has a higher tendency to roll over.

As the small car receives the forceful momentum of the bigger car, it will sustain more damages. It will increase the risk of whiplash and the vehicle being totaled.

What’s the safest car then?

There are no absolute parameters to identify which car is safer during collisions. Collisions vary in nature, impact, momentum, and environment. These factors will define how much damage it will cause to a car and the people inside.

In the end, road safety is more than just deciding between a small and big car. You also have to learn proper driving etiquette. You should also know what to do in case your safety gets compromised on the road.


Collisions will always cause damage to a car. Whether it’s big or small, the vehicle and its passengers will be put at such great risk.

If you figured in a collision, it’s important to consult a physician right away. You should also get your car checked comprehensively for any hidden damages.