- European safety tests see 5 stars for Suzuki's new Vitara, while the newly arrived Mazda2 and incoming 500X fall short with 4 stars.
The latest round of crash safety testing from Europe's New Car Assessment Program, sister organisation to the local ANCAP, has delivered a 5-Star result for the Suzuki Vitara ahead of its arrival in Australia.
The Vitara was praised by the safety organisation for its autonomous emergency braking (AEB) system in some European models.
Scores of 89 and 85 precent were achieved for adult and child occupant protection respectively, while 76 percent was scored for pedestrian safety.
Both models scored 4-Stars, being marked down for 'safety assist' technologies (64 percent each), due to the lack of AEB.
The 500X scored 86 percent for adult occupant protection and 85 percent for children, while the Mazda2 also scored 86 percent for adults but a lower 78 percent for children.
While the Mazda2 is now on sale here and the two small SUVs are due soon, the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) is yet to apply its own safety ratings.
The Vitara and 500X are due to arrive in local showrooms this year, while the new Mazda2 has been on sale in Australia since late last year.
As we’ve seen recently, a 5-Star rating in Europe doesn’t always translate to the same result in Australia, and some 4-Star cars have also managed the full 5 under local guidelines.
The Mitsubishi Triton, Land Rover Discovery Sport, Renault Captur, BMW i3 and Tesla Model S were all awarded 5-Stars by ANCAP this month, while the MINI Cooper 3-Door and BMW 2 Series Active Tourer could only manage four.
The 2 Series Active Tourer was awarded 5-Stars by Euro NCAP last year, but on the flipside, the i3 was only deemed worthy of a 4-Star rating.
Results don’t always match the American testing regime either, with the NHTSA in the ‘States awarding the new Kia Carnival 5-Stars, but under ANCAP testing, managed only 4-Stars in its local form.
Speaking with TMR, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) Australia's Lucy McLellan said the Euro NCAP score might have been higher, had the organisation considered the 500X's optional AEB.
When the 500X arrives in Australia, Fiat expect to offer AEB as standard on two models and an option on the Pop Star variant. While stopping short of predicting a safety rating from ANCAP, Ms McLellan said Euro NCAP results mean the 500X will be one of the safest cars on the road in the event of a collision.
Mazda Australia's Karla Leach told TMR that the carmaker is confident of maintaining its 5-star rating for the Mazda2 when the new model faces ANCAP testing in the coming months.
Ms Leach said the differing testing protocols for EuroNCAP and ANCAP along with the Mazda2’s list of safety features should facilitate the top safety rating.
Stay tuned for ANCAP ratings on the Vitara, 500X and new Mazda2.
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