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Trevor Collett | Jul 14, 2016

The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) has released its latest crash safety test results, with the maximum 5-star safety rating awarded to two models.

Suzuki’s Vitara compact SUV gets full marks with a score of 35.79 out of 37, along with the Kia Optima midsizer which gained the 5-star rating via Euro NCAP testing. ANCAP says both are top-sellers in their class and were previously unrated.

Further, the Program says the release of the latest results means ANCAP now offers a safety rating for 93 percent of the Australian new car market.

“We’ve today awarded the maximum 5-star ANCAP safety rating for the Suzuki Vitara which is a real boost for consumers and Suzuki,” ANCAP CEO, James Goodwin, said.

“Until now, the Vitara was ranked as the top-selling unrated model across all passenger, SUV and light commercial vehicles in both Australia and New Zealand.”

Mr Goodwin said the Vitara performed well during crash testing, while praising the standard fitment of reversing collision avoidance technologies and a manual speed limiter.

2016 Kia Optima
2016 Kia Optima

However, Goodwin called for Suzuki to add standard autonomous emergency braking to the Vitara range, as the safety feature is standard for models sold in Europe.

For Suzuki, the 5-star rating applies to all front-wheel-drive, non-turbo Vitara variants, while all of Kia’s Optima models are covered by the 5-star rating.

“[The Optima result] opens the door for families and fleet buyers in the market for a replacement medium-size passenger car with top safety credentials,” Mr Goodwin said.

“The Optima provides a high level of standard active safety features including all three grades of autonomous emergency braking, and demonstrated good performance in all crash and safety assist performance tests.”

Safety features for the Optima include a lane support system, adaptive cruise control and following-distance warning, but Australasian models lack active speed assistance systems standard to some European variants.

Mr Goodwin said ANCAP had recently sought to target models for safety testing that were unrated in Australia, and that buyers can expect more results for previously untested models in Australia in the coming months.

MORE: Subaru Levorg Launches With Maximum 5-Star Safety Rating
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Suzuki | Kia | ANCAP

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