ARLINGTON, Va., (WUSA) -- The Honda Civic earned the top safety rating new crash tests.
For the first time, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety conducted overlap frontal crashes to see how the front corner of small cars hold up during a collision.
It's an area not always designed to absorb a crash's impact.
The IIHS' David Zuby says this type of collision causes 25 percent of serious injuries in frontal crashes.
"We still kill close to 9,000 people every year in frontal crashes, so this is one of the remaining problems," he says.
The Dodge Dart, Ford Focus, Hyundai Elantra and the 2014 Scion tC received acceptable ratings.
But some popular models did not do well in safety evaluations.
The Chevrolet Sonic, Volkswagen Beetle, Chevrolet Cruze, Nissan Sentra, Kia Soul and 2014 Kia Forte all rated marginal or poor.
But the IIHS says drivers of those cars should not be too concerned.
Zuby says, "All the cars we tested today are very safe by virtue of the tests we've been running for year."
The agency says these tests will simply help auto companies make cars that much safer.
IIHS Small Car Frontal Overlap Crash Tests
The Toyota Corolla was not tested because a new version is coming out in the fall.
The Corolla is the number two selling small car in America.