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ANCAP gets a date

For safety’s sake: A car with a five-star ANCAP crash test rating from 10 years ago isn’t equal to a five-star car today, so the crash safety body has introduced a date stamp logo.

From next year ANCAP will date stamp its crash test ratings to help buyers

1 Sep 2014

AUSTRALIA'S crash safety watchdog will introduce a date stamp system identifying the year a vehicle was tested in a bid to make it easier for consumers to compare the safety of cars now compared with older models.

The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) date stamping system will include a rubber stamp style logo, which will appear next to the star rating for a car to specify the year in which it was tested. The format will be: “Tested 2014.” ANCAP chairman Lauchlan McIntosh said the date stamp will allow buyers to compare star ratings of cars from the past with more modern vehicles, while encouraging the auto industry to strive for higher standards in safety.

“Consumers are now well aware of ANCAP and its 1 to 5 star safety rating system and are interested to know how a 5 star rating of earlier years compares with a 5 star rating of today,” Mr McIntosh said.

“ANCAP prides itself on the provision and presentation of independent and easy to understand ratings to consumers.

“As the ANCAP test program moves in line with the rapid progression of vehicle safety design and technologies, the introduction of date stamping to ANCAP ratings is the next step in clearly communicating the differences in a car rated today compared with a car rated in forthcoming years.”

The crash safety body says new system will maker it easier for consumers to differentiate between new and old versions of cars.

For example, the Honda Accord VTi-L was given the highest-possible five-star crash rating in 2000, but was not available with traction control and only had two airbags.

In contrast, the 2013 Honda Accord achieved a four-star rating and is offered with six airbags, traction control and a reversing camera, among other safety features.

ANCAP’S new date stamp logos came into effect from July this year and car-makers, dealerships and other organisations that display ratings will be required to use them in relevant marketing material from January 1, 2015.

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