Mazda’s all-new MX-5 roadster has proved to be more than just a step-up from its predecessor on the road, as latest crash safety testing in Australia puts it a step-up on safety as well.
The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) has rated the MX-5 at the maximum 5-stars for safety, lifting the roadster from the 4-star rating earned by the third generation MX-5 in 2006.
“The ever-popular sports car impressed in local testing achieving a good result for this type of vehicle,” ANCAP CEO, James Goodwin, said.
“This is a significant improvement on the model it replaces.”
Mr Goodwin acknowledged the safety challenges presented to engineers with a soft-top roadster body, with occupant protection proving significantly more difficult.
To that end, the side impact, pole and whiplash tests each scored maximum points or ratings for the MX-5, while the offset frontal crash scored 14.20 out of 16.
Pedestrian safety was rated at ‘good’, which is the maximum rating, and the MX-5 scored an overall rating of 35.20 out of 37.
“Not only has the MX-5 performed well in each of the impact tests, this is the highest pedestrian protection score we have seen for any vehicle to date,” Mr Goodwin said.
Mr Goodwin said the MX-5’s ‘pop-up’ bonnet aided its pedestrian safety score, which is the best ever recorded in Australia. The MX-5 even bested the pedestrian-airbag-equipped Volvo V40 for pedestrian safety.
While the MX-5 earned glowing praise from ANCAP in the most part, the Program called on Mazda to add more standard safety technologies - such as autonomous emergency braking and active lane support.
Also, while ANCAP awarded the MX-5 the maximum 5-star rating, sister organisation Euro NCAP rated the roadster at 'only' 4-stars during testing last year.
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