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Hyundai displays crashed ANCAP car at dealership
Leading Hyundai dealership uses ANCAP-crashed Elantra to promote safety
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12 Dec 2017
By TIM ROBSON
THE Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) has displayed a crashed Hyundai Elantra in a dealership showrooms to highlight to consumers the importance of safety when purchasing a new vehicle.
An initiative of ANCAP, the Elantra – which was crashed in a 64km/h offset test last year – was offered to Lennock Hyundai in Canberra, where the wreck was displayed for six week.
“To have an ANCAP crash car, on display, in a new car dealership, is really a turning point in what we’ve been able to achieve with industry, and a good partnership,” ANCAP chief executive James Goodwin told GoAuto at an end-of-year function in Canberra.
Mr Goodwin said that dealership sales staff were underutilised when it came to selling the benefits of safety to customers.
“Our research shows that safety, in fact, does sell,” Mr Goodwin said. “The old concept that safety doesn’t sell... people have moved on. Consumers have moved on. Hopefully they won’t see things like airbags (deploying), and so on. But having a crashed car on display, in the dealership, allows them to look at that, to be able to touch it, feel it.”
Lennock Hyundai, Canberra sales manager John Cooper said that the car – which is owned by ANCAP – was placed on display as part of the launch of ANCAP’s new mobile phone application.
“It was a talking point for customers, and something a bit different. It was a way of starting a conversation about safety in the cars,” said Mr Cooper.
“Hyundai makes a point of trying to create the safest, five-star ANCAP cars on the road, and it was great to be able to show that (after a crash) at 64km/h, the doors still opened, the crash test dummy had no injuries, so to speak, and it was a really good talking point.”
Mr Cooper said it was also well received by customers.
“It wasn’t confronting (for customers),” he said. “A few jokes about poor parking were made on occasion, which helped to soften the conversation a little bit, and allowed us to get people over to it and explain why it was there.”
The dealership’s service team also took the opportunity to examine the car, according to Mr Cooper, while other franchisees within the Lennock group also inspected the car.
“It was good to acknowledge that the manufacturer is striving to get safer cars on the road, as well. I know another dealer in Sydney will display a Kona after it’s been crashed, and we’ll welcome the opportunity to take another one on our floor at some stage.”
Hyundai Motor Company Australia general manager public relations Bill Thomas told GoAuto the Elantra “might not look too glamorous,” but it highlighted the importance of safety to new-car buyers.
“The car’s not for sale and it wouldn’t get much at an auction, but it’s hugely valuable to us,” said Mr Thomas. “ANCAP continues to do a great job for Australian road users and we’re proud to work with them on this project.”
Mr Thomas confirmed that safety standards are an important part of the buying decision.
“We know that safety is of paramount importance for buyers of new cars, which is why the entire range of Hyundai passenger cars has a five-star ANCAP rating,” he said.
“It’s a fantastic example of how the car performs in an accident – its crash structure performance, its airbag deployment, even the fact that you can still open the front door, all are on show in a very clear way and all indicate an exceptional level of vehicle safety.”
The Elantra was crashed at ANCAP’s Sydney crash labs in March 2016, achieving a maximum score of five stars. It tallied 35.01 from a possible 37, with perfect scores in side impact and pole testing.
Mr Goodwin, who confirmed that ANCAP approached Hyundai with the idea, said it showed confidence from the brand in the car.
“To be able to show the independently crashed car, alongside that (new) car as it’s been sold brand new to consumers, is a real interesting talking point for people, and we really welcome that,” said Mr Goodwin. “Congratulations to Hyundai for being the first to do that.”
Mr Goodwin said that the body’s Great Wall Steed – which was rated at just two stars – was sent to Tasmania for a display at an agricultural festival, while the safety body is in discussions with other brands to dispatch more crash models. Currently, the majority of the cars are stored in Canberra.
“We’ve been offering that to a few brands that we’ve been doing the tests of this year,” confirmed Mr Goodwin. “It’s a competitive marketplace, so all it takes is someone to change the mould, and hopefully other people will follow suit.
“We think that’s a good education tool, and hopefully for the sales reps, it’s a good selling tool, as well.”
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