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Four more ANCAP top scores announced

Safe bet: Jaguar's XF large luxury sedan was introduced to Australia earlier this year and recent ANCAP test have rated all eight variants in the range with the maximum five stars.

Holden, Jaguar, Kia and Skoda earn five stars in latest ANCAP tests

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General News logo13 Apr 2016

By DANIEL GARDNER

FOUR new models have achieved the maximum five-star rating in the latest round of safety tests by the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP), with Holden's Spark, the Jaguar XF, Kia Sportage and Skoda Superb all scoring a top star rating.

Representing the smallest end of the quartet, Holden's Spark micro hatchback scored particularly well in the side impact test, managing 15.81 points out a possible total of 16 and picked up extra praise for occupant protection.

In the frontal offset test, an “acceptable” rating for the chest area deviated from a perfect passenger side result, while the driver's right leg was the lowest score of “marginal” and “acceptable” for left leg and chest areas.

In almost all frontal impact areas, pedestrians are well protected, but high hazard areas at the windscreen's lower edge and bonnet leading edge resulted in a 21.84 score out of a possible 36. The Spark's overall score was 33.60 out of a possible 37 points.

The Spark was praised for its improvements over the previous model, but was marked down for not having the lane support system that is offered as standard in Europe.

“The updated Spark is a big improvement on the model it replaces but it is lacking in moreadvanced safety features such as a lane support system which was standard on its Europeancounterpart,” said ANCAP CEO James Goodwin.

Two offerings in the large sedan segment also made it in to the five-star set, with Skoda's Superb and the Jaguar XF both performing strongly.

Jaguar's luxury sedan scored a particularly commendable 92 per cent for adult occupant protection with 35.02 points out of 38, and only “acceptable” results for chest areas detracting from otherwise “good” results in all other areas.

A few points were dropped for “marginal” rear seat whiplash protection but front passenger protection scored the maximum four out of four across the board for both pole and side impact tests.

Pedestrian impact tests produced an 80 per cent result thanks to a predominantly “good” rating across bumper, bonnet areas, as well as the frequently low scoring bonnet edge zone.

The Skoda's trump card was in both adult and child occupant protection, scoring an equal 86 per cent in both assessments, and an almost perfect score for side impact and pole tests with only the chest area dropping to 3.84 points out of four. In all seven other tested areas, the Skoda scored four.

Pedestrians are not quite as well looked after compared with the Jaguar, with a majority of the bonnet area dropping to “adequate, marginal, weak or poor,” but bumper areas were graded as “good”.

With an ever increasing ANCAP focus on autonomous braking, both large sedans picked up bonus points for their systems, which offer mitigation against nose-to-tail and pedestrian collisions.

Mr Goodwin said the Jaguar had performed well in the safety tests but customers expect good results from higher-end manufacturers.

“The XF has a high standard of safety features buyers would expect in this sort of vehicleincluding AEB City and Interurban. It scored the highest pedestrian rating of ‘Good’ and is fittedwith an active bonnet.” The lone SUV representative in the most recent tests returned a result of 16 out of 16 in the side impact test but gave a few points away in the Sportage's frontal offset test as a result of “marginal” protection for the driver's right leg and “acceptable” for both front passenger chest areas.

More points were forfeited for pedestrian injury mitigation with only the centre of the bonnet providing “good” protection, but bumper and bonnet leading edge offered “mostly good” protection.

The Sportage would have scored higher than the 34.62 out of 37 maximum points if it was delivered with autonomous braking range wide, but only the higher-spec variants are offered with the technology.

“The Sportage performed well in testing and includes emergency brake assist, hill launch assistand reversing collision avoidance as standard but unfortunately Autonomous Emergency Braking(AEB) is only offered on the most expensive variant,” Mr Goodwin said.

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