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Six cars gain five stars in latest Euro NCAP tests

Date: 07 September 2017   |   Author: Daniel Puddicombe

Six cars sold in the UK have all attainted the maximum five-star Euro NCAP rating as part of the safety body's latest round of crash-testing.

According to Euro NCAP, the Ford Fiesta, Jeep Compass, Mazda CX-5, Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabriolet, Vauxhall Grandland X and Renault Koleos gained the highest accolade

Kia's Picanto and Rio vehicles both achieved three stars, although Euro NCAP said the ratings improved to four and five stars respectively when the vehicles were fitted with optional safety equipment.

Euro NCAP noted that vehicles "demonstrated an apparent lack of restraint robustness" in side impact testing. The body said that in the pole test of the Jeep Compass, readings in a sensor in the dummy's chest indicated injury risk values above the limit to qualify for points but below those deemed to indicate a risk of life-threatening injuries.

In the case of the Mercedes, the testing body said a ten-year old child dummy's head struck the roof frame because the side airbag did not cover the impact area, while in the same test with the Picanto, the chest of the child was "poorly protected".

"Euro NCAP is pushing for the fitment of advanced technologies and manufacturers have responded well, with AEB now commonplace on most new cars," said Michiel van Ratingen, secretary general of Euro NCAP. "However, they should not forget the basics of occupant protection in case of a crash. All occupants deserve to be equally well protected, whether they're an adult driver or a child seated in the rear. The adoption of a ten-year-old child dummy in our test last year allows us to highlight areas for improvement, even in five-star cars." 

"When you compare the impact testing for the 1997 Ford Fiesta with the 2017 version, you don't have to be an expert to recognise a distinct progression in car safety over the past 20 years," said Matthew Avery, director of research at Thatcham Research. "The dummy in the 1997 model endures a heavy head-strike against the B-Pillar and there is serious intrusion in the side impact test too. The structure was just not stable. Today, however, the 2017 Ford Fiesta offers far, far greater levels of protection to its occupants. What better way to demonstrate the positive impact of the Euro NCAP testing programme as it celebrates its 20th anniversary?"