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Holden's electric car scores highest safety rating


The Automobile Association and the NZ Transport Agency congratulate Holden on producing an electric-powered car that can also be classed amongst the safest cars on the market.

Launched in Australia this week, the Holden Volt was awarded the highest Australasian New Car Assessment Programme (ANCAP) star rating of 5-stars. Performing well on all tests, the Volt includes eight airbags, intelligent seat belt reminders in all seating positions, lane departure warning and forward collision alert. The Volt, which is likely to be available in New Zealand in November, is only the second electric car to score a 5-star ANCAP safety rating. In 2011, the Nissan Leaf was awarded a 5-star rating.

AA General Manager Motoring Services Stella Stocks, says battery-powered vehicles have presented a different challenge for manufacturers when incorporating crash protection into their designs.

"The crash protection provided by the Volt, however, is on par with the traditionally-powered models," she says.

Also scoring a 5-star rating was the Renault Megane (diesel), Audi Q3 (front wheel drive diesel) and the Nissan Juke. There is currently no confirmed date as to when the diesel Megane will be available in New Zealand. The Suzuki Splash managed a 4-star ANCAP safety rating due to scoring insufficient points in its crash tests for a 5 star ANCAP safety rating. It also lacked electronic stability control which has been a mandatory requirement for a 5 star result since 2008.

NZTA Chief Executive Geoff Dangerfield, says it is pleasing to the range of top-safety rated vehicles continue to grow.

"We’re encouraging people to choose the safest vehicles they can afford, and as demand for safety increases manufacturers are moving to meet that demand by producing more five-star rated vehicles. It’s a trend we want to see continue," he says.

ANCAP is supported by all Australian and New Zealand motoring clubs, the Australian Government, the New Zealand Government, all Australian state governments, the Victorian Transport Accident Commission, NRMA Insurance and the FIA Foundation.

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