Steane Klose | Feb 7, 2008

According to NRMA Insurance, the Toyota Corolla costs less to repair after a low-speed crash than its main small car rivals. The NRMA used the ‘bumper test’ to make the collision cost assessment. The bumper test simulates a 10km/h collision which, according to the NRMA is the most common type of road crash.

The most notable result of the small car bumper test conducted by the NRMA was that the Corolla cost at least half as much to repair as any of the other eight cars tested. The NRMA noted that the Corolla was evidence that manufacturers could design vehicles that performed well in both pedestrian safety and vehicle protection.

After the test on nine small and compact cars, NRMA Insurance estimated the Corolla would cost just $1,019 to repair, equivalent to 4.4 per cent of its purchase price.

Repair costs for the other vehicles tested were all above 10 per cent of their purchase prices - and two were over 30 per cent, with the new Mitsubishi Lancer and Suzuki Swift costing more than $5,000 to repair. Honda's Civic was a standout, with the repair bill coming in at a staggering $7,386 or in excess of 30 percent of the replacement value of the car.

The low-speed crash testing highlighted the fact that a car's bumper design had a big impact on the amount of damage caused in low-speed collisions and specific design enhancements - even those unnoticed by owners - could have a sizeable impact on the cost of insurance.

The results of the low-speed crash testing were as follows.


Repair cost

Repair cost as % of RRP

Toyota Corolla (5-door hatch)



Ford Focus (sedan)



Holden Astra (5-door hatch)



Mazda3 (5-door hatch)



Toyota Yaris (5-door hatch)



Hyundai Getz (5-door hatch)



Mitsubishi Lancer (sedan)



Honda Civic (sedan)



Suzuki Swift (5-door hatch)




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