In early February officials of the Euro NCAP, the European car-safety assessment organization, announced the five best performing cars of 2010. To be selected as safest cars in their categories, the vehicles had to achieve a high overall score and attain the coveted five-star rating. The top achievers by category were the BMW 5 Series in the Executive category (see video), Alfa Romeo Giulietta in the Small Family category, Honda CR-Z in the Supermini category, Toyota Verso in the Small MPV category, and Kia Sportage in the Small Off-road 4×4 category. In addition to the top five achievers, the Suzuki Swift, Kia Venga, BMW X1, Volkswagen Sharan/Seat Alhambra, and Citroën C4 all exceeded the 80% mark in overall score, putting them on the list of best performing cars of 2010. Euro NCAP also announced its poorest results of 2010, which were achieved by the Citroën Nemo (three stars) and Landwind CV9 (two stars). Last year, Euro NCAP crash-tested 29 vehicles, 65% of which attained the five-star rating (compared to 90% in 2009). The 25% decrease in 2010 is the result of tougher assessment criteria. One example is that Euro NCAP is now performing ESC (electronic stability control) tests as part of the overall assessment. Since 2009, Euro NCAP required ESC systems to be fitted as standard and is now measuring system performance when testing the vehicles. The next batch of 2010 Euro NCAP results will be released on Feb. 23.