Previously sold as the V240 (petrol) and V200 (diesel) models, the Steed was given a refresh before being reintroduced to Australia last year.
With the Steed came the chance of improved safety, as the ‘V’ Series had previously been rated at 2- and 3-stars by ANCAP.
Great Wall says “safety features are inherent in every Great Wall dual cab utility, starting with a strong, robust frame and a cabin constructed with the finest high technology materials”.
But ANCAP disagrees, saying the Steed’s performance during crash testing under 2016 guidelines was “poor” and “disappointing” before awarding it the 2-star result.
“This is a disappointing result for consumers and the brand,” ANCAP Chief Executive Officer, James Goodwin, said.
“While the Steed is equipped with six airbags and electronic stability control, features which were not offered on the previous model, there has been little change to the vehicle’s structure to improve the safety of the passenger cabin.”
The Steed’s foot-well deformed during the crash test, and foot-well panels separated. The pedals were displaced, and ANCAP says the steering column presented a risk of knee injury.
Both driver and front seat passenger faced potential injury from dashboard components, and whiplash protection for each was scored at the second-lowest rating of ‘marginal’. The Steed is also missing a top tether point for child restraints.
Great Wall Motors Australia responded to the 2-star rating, saying it is “disappointed by the performance of the new Steed in ANCAP testing”.
“We have sent all the data to our engineering team in head office and set up a response team to investigate what needs to be done to improve the ANCAP performance of our product,” Great Wall Australia’s Andrew Ellis said.
Mr Ellis said safety was a priority for Great Wall, and that the Steed’s additional safety features (six airbags and standard electronic stability control) were designed to lift the safety rating over that of the V240 and V200.
“We thought the additional safety features would help improve the Steed’s ANCAP rating. It’s clear to everyone in the organisation our ANCAP test standards need a dramatic improvement,” Ellis said.
While the Steed scored just 16.49 points from 37, the pickup did score the maximum 16 points during the side impact test.
Considering the 2-star safety rating for the Great Wall Steed, ANCAP said its independent testing program should be trusted above claims made by carmakers.
Hyundai, Honda and Mercedes-Benz will have no problems attaching maximum 5-star safety claims to their respective new models, with the i30, Civic Hatch and Sedan (excluding Type-R, for now), along with the Marco Polo Activity van all achieving 5-star results.
For the i30 and Civic, 5-star ratings apply under the current 2017 testing rules, with the i30 scoring 35.01 out of 37 points and the Civic (both sedan and hatch) scoring 34.68 points.
The Marco Polo was tested by Euro NCAP, continuing its 5-star rating from 2014 as a variant of the Mercedes-Benz V-Class.