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Holden hatch Cruzes to five stars

High five: The Holden Cruze hatch has been given the same five star ANCAP safety rating as its sedan sibling.

Aussie-designed Cruze hatch awarded five-star safety to match sedan

Holden logo6 Oct 2011

By RON HAMMERTON

THE forthcoming Holden Cruze hatch has been awarded a five-star safety rating by the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) without a panel being scratched.

An assessment by ANCAP engineers of the Australian-designed small car deemed it to be the same in all critical structural and safety aspects as the Cruze sedan that was awarded the maximum safety rating after crash tests at Sydney’s Crashlab in 2009 when the car was being built in South Korea.

This means the safety rating for the hatch version can be rubber-stamped under ANCAP’s variant policy without the expense of a separate series of crash tests.

The five-star result by the Holden is a far cry from the two-star effort by the Chinese-made Chery J11 compact SUV that was also announced overnight (see separate story).

The Adelaide-built Holden hatchback is set to join its Aussie-made Series II sedan sibling in Holden showrooms in November, bringing the Cruze range up to full strength for the first time.

The Cruze is already Holden’s second-best-selling car behind the Holden Commodore, and a rival for the market-leading Mazda3 for passenger car leadership.

13 center imageLeft: ANCAP crash test pictures of the Cruze sedan in 2009.

In its original ANCAP crash test released in May 2009, the CD Cruze sedan scored 35 points out of a possible 37, with 15 points out of a possible 16 in occupant protection.

ANCAP commented that the Cruze body held its shape well in the 64km/h offset crash test, and after the crash all doors could be opened with normal effort.

The worst rating received for any particular element of the crash tests was an “acceptable” result for chest protection for the front seat occupants and the lower legs of the front seat passenger.

Results from the tough side impact pole test were all rated as “good”.

Built on General Motors’ global Delta II small-car platform that has also spawned the Opel Astra due here next year, the Cruze is fitted with six airbags – including driver and front passenger, front side impact and side curtain airbags – electronic stability control (ESC), anti-lock brakes, electronic brake-force distribution, traction control and a collapsible pedal assembly system.

Announcing the result overnight, GM Holden chairman and managing director Mike Devereux said Holden had always been confident in the real-world safety capabilities of Cruze.

“We knew we were building an extremely safe car but it’s great to get this third party recognition,” he said.

“The high level of safety features is just one of the many reasons Cruze has been so well received in this country, making it Australia’s third-best-selling passenger car in 2011 with just one body style.

“With stunning Cruze hatch styling, a high level of standard features and now this safety stamp of approval, we believe we’re onto a real winner.

“We can’t wait to get the hatch version into our showrooms next month and into customers’ hands.”

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