The numerical modelling of impinging jet flows is not straightforward as it should not only solve the shear layer development in the free jet region, but also the near-wall behaviour (streamline curvature) and the resulting wall jets after impingement. This study presents a validation study of steady Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes turbulence models for predicting isothermal plane turbulent impinging jets at two different slot Reynolds numbers, i.e. Re = 8,000 (case I) and Re = 13,000 (case II), based on 2D particle image velocimetry measurements. In addition, an in-depth analysis of the results provided by the five different turbulence models: standard k−ε (SKE), realisable k−ε (RKE), RNG k−ε SST k−ω and a Reynolds stress model (RSM), is performed. The results show that: (1) for both Reynolds numbers the best agreement with measured velocities and turbulent kinetic energy in the region near the jet nozzle is achieved with SST; (2) the best predictions of potential core length are provided by RNG (case I) and RKE (case II); (3) centreline distributions of velocities and turbulent kinetic energy are most accurately predicted by RNG and RKE for case I, while for case II the best agreement with experimental data is obtained by SKE and RNG; (4) the best overall performance for both cases in predicting velocities is provided by RKE, and by RKE and RNG when considering turbulent kinetic energy; (5) all models more accurately predict the jet spreading rate in the intermediate region than in the potential core region; (6) for both Reynolds numbers SKE provides the most accurate estimation of jet decay rate.