Car manufacturers don't seem to value of customer safety equally across the globe with emerging economies such as India and South America being flooded with lower safety starred cars. Having said that, Fiat has launched a zero starred Panda in Europe.
Following recent four star safety announcements, the Tata Nexon becomes the first made in India, sold in India car to achieve Global NCAP’s coveted five star crash test rating. The Mahindra Marazzo also does well, achieving a four star result.
The Mahindra Marazzo with standard double airbags, ABS, SBR for driver and ISOFIX anchorages, reached four stars in Adult Occupant Protection and two stars for Child Occupant Protection.
David Ward, Global NCAP Secretary General said: “This is a huge landmark for car safety in India. Congratulations to Tata Motors for achieving India’s first five star rating for adult occupant protection. Congratulations also to Mahindra for their first four star result. The Nexon was engineered in India and this shows the huge capability of the domestic industry to achieve excellence in safety design and performance. With the Nexon, Tata have shown the global car industry that to achieve five stars you can ‘Make in India’. Global NCAP is looking forward to many more Indian five star cars and further improvements in both pedestrian protection and crash avoidance.”
Meanwhile over in the UK, where five star ratings are the norm, the latest Fiat Panda has been panned in crash test safety rating. The Fiat Panda has become one of only two zero-rated cars in Euro NCAP’s history – the other was the FIAT Punto (2017) FIAT Panda also awarded lowest ever Child Occupant Protection score (16%)
The 2018 facelift FIAT Panda has today been given one of the lowest ratings in Euro NCAP’s history, having failed to achieve more than 50% in any of the car safety organisation’s four key testing categories.
Matthew Avery, Director of Research, Thatcham Research comments, “Most troubling is that the FIAT Panda is seen as a good choice for young drivers and fledgling families. But the only safety technology fitted were seatbelt reminders and the rear system failed to meet requirements, so wasn’t even rated. Where budgets are tight, consider a safer small car second-hand, like the five-star SEAT Ibiza.
“These shocking Euro NCAP test results demonstrate an inconsistent commitment to safety, as FIAT has produced four and five-star cars in the past.”
Jeep asleep at the wheel on safety
Another poor performer in this month’s round of Euro NCAP testing was the new Jeep Wrangler, which achieved just a one-star rating and a 50% Adult Occupant Protection score. It joins the FIAT Punto and FIAT Panda as the three lowest rated vehicles to go through the programme.
Avery comments, “Unlike the FIAT Panda, the Jeep Wrangler is an entirely new vehicle and doesn’t come cheap. Buyers outlaying over £50,000 on a car should expect more than a one-star safety rating. No AEB system is fitted, which is unheard of in this price bracket. There were a number of issues with the Wrangler in impact testing too, in terms of deformation of the footwell and damage to connecting structures, while the make-up of the dashboard was seen to present a risk to occupants.”