A Holden SUV along with hatchbacks from Citroen and Peugeot have each secured a maximum 5-star ANCAP safety rating.
However, it was just a 4-star Australasian New Car Assessment Programme (ANCAP) safety rating for the medium-sized MG-6, which was released in New Zealand last year.
Poor crash test results for upper leg protection in a frontal offset test along with unstable airbag deployment contributed to a lower score. This was combined with marginal chest protection in the side impact test.
AA motoring advice manager Andrew Bayliss says while MG is owned by Chinese company SAIC, the MG-6 was designed in the United Kingdom primarily for a European market.
“It’s disappointing the manufacturer has dropped the ball on a few features that could have seen the MG-6 become a 5-star contender,” Mr Bayliss says.
All four cars tested have dual frontal, side chest and side curtain airbags as standard along with ABS brakes, electronic brake distribution (EDB) and electronic stability control (ESC). In addition, each of the cars provides advanced seat belt reminders fitted to both front seats.
Mr Bayliss says in contrast to the MG-6, the medium-sized Citroen DS5 received the highest safety score – although both the Citroen and the MG failed to shine with comparatively low pedestrian protection scores. Better pedestrian protection is offered by the smaller Peugeot 208 and the Holden Trax compact SUV and both performed well in their crash tests.
“Manufacturers know their customers are more safety conscious and aware of what technology is available to them and strive to deliver,” Mr Bayliss says.
“Earning a 5-star ANCAP safety rating is now normal and should be one of the expectations consumers have when they consider their vehicle choices.”
NZ Transport Agency group manager Access and Use Celia Patrick says a vehicle’s safety features are key to protecting occupants in the event of a crash.
“Higher consumer demand will persuade manufacturers to raise their game. I encourage consumers to ask about the safety features when they’re looking to buy a car and to buy the safest car they can afford,” Ms Patrick says.
ANCAP is supported by all Australian and New Zealand motoring clubs, the Australian Government, the New Zealand Government, Australian state and territory governments, the Victorian Transport Accident Commission, NRMA Insurance and the FIA Foundation.
The full list of ANCAP’s vehicle safety ratings, other vehicle safety information and the specifications of the rated vehicles are available online at rightcar.govt.nz.