Alfa Romeo’s Giulia has been shown to be one of the safest options in its class.

The small luxury sedan aced the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s latest round of testing, for which it achieved the institute’s highest rating of "Top Safety Pick+."

To earn the Top Safety Pick+ rating, a vehicle must achieve the highest possible score, a score of “good,” in the five tests used by IIHS to evaluate crash safety performance. The tests include small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraints.

Vehicles also need an “advanced” or “superior” score for crash prevention technology and an “acceptable” or “good” score for headlights. In the case of the Giulia, the IIHS awarded the sedan a score of superior for crash prevention technology, due to its automatic braking. The Giulia also received a score of good for its headlights. Once again, the scores achieved were the highest possible.

There are some caveat, though. The rating is only applicable to models built after May 2017, when the car's front-end structure was modified and the door hinge pillar and door sill were reinforced to improve occupant protection in small and moderate overlap front crashes. The Giulia also needs to be equipped with two available items for the Top Safety Pick+ rating to be applicable: a Forward Collision Warning-Plus package and bi-xenon headlights.

Nevertheless, the results are impressive considering the Giulia has no direct predecessor tested on which Alfa Romeo’s engineers could build upon. More established rivals like the Audi A4 and BMW 3-Series also have Top Safety Pick+ ratings, though the Mercedes-Benz C-Class is only rated a Top Safety Pick.

“The Giulia represents the height of Alfa Romeo engineering and technology so no effort was spared when it came to the vehicle’s performance and safety features,” Alfa Romeo boss, Reid Bigland, said in a statement. “We’re honored to receive this award from IIHS as it shows our commitment to creating state-of-the-art vehicles.”