2020 top vehicle safety picks

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NEW YORK (CBS) The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is out with its list of the safest vehicles.

To earn a top safety pick, vehicles must perform well in six different crash tests. The IIHS also measures roof strength and evaluates whether headlights provide good vision.

This year 64 vehicles earned a top safety pick award, seven more than last year. And 23 received the highest honor of Top Safety Pick+.

"It is an encouraging sign, especially since we raised the bar a little bit this year,"said IIHS' David Harkey.

He says vehicles had to meet a higher standard in crash tests. They also were required to have pedestrian detection systems that can prevent an accident. Of all the automakers, Mazda took home the most Top Safety Pick+ awards with five. Subaru had four. GM's Cadillac and Tesla's Model 3 were the only U.S car companies to earn the top award. Hyundai and its luxury division Genesis had eight models that earned a Top Safety Pick award, and three were given the Top Safety Pick+.

"I do think that vehicles are as safe as we've ever seen them," Harkey said. But he says car makers can do even better. "One of the things we would like to see more improvement on is headlights."

He would like to see top performing headlights become standard on all vehicles, giving drivers a better chance at avoiding an accident in the first place.