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ANCAP: Double joy for Nissan in SUV safety

Safe path: Nissan’s new American-sourced Pathfinder has scored five stars in Australian crash tests.

Nissan Pathfinder and Juke both get ANCAP five-star rating ahead of launch

Nissan logo16 Oct 2013

By RON HAMMERTON

NISSAN’S imminent SUV debutantes, the 2014 Pathfinder and Juke, have received a clean bill of health from Australia’s independent vehicle safety watchdog, the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP).

Both models have been awarded a five-star safety rating ahead of their showroom debuts in Australia this month.

All variants of the United States-built Pathfinder, sitting on a new car-style monocoque platform, scored the top rating after crash tests on behalf of ANCAP at Sydney’s Crashlab.

This is a one star improvement on the previous model that was rated by ANCAP in 2012.

In the case of the British-built Juke compact SUV, only the standard front-wheel-drive variant with the 1.6-litre petrol engine is included in the latest five-star rating, which was carried forward from the European NCAP tests done in 2011 when the current Juke was launched.

As the AWD turbo-charged version has not yet been crash tested under NCAP conditions, it remains without a rating for now.

12 center imageFrom top: Nissan pathfinder pole-impact, Nissan Juke font and side impact tests.

ANCAP spokesperson Jack Haley said ANCAP was encouraged to see Nissan building five-star cars.

“It is becoming increasingly difficult to sell cars in Australia without a 5 star safety rating,” he said. “Nissan should be congratulated on raising the Pathfinder to this higher level of safety.

“With the Pathfinder, Juke, Dualis, Pulsar and Leaf all achieving a five-star safety rating, we look forward to Nissan bringing the remainder of its fleet to this level.”

Among the Nissan models to score just four stars are Micra light hatchback, Navara one-tonne ute and X-Trail medium SUV, while the old Patrol gets only three stars.

The Juke range is set to be launched in Australia next week, with the Pathfinder following into showrooms late in the month.

Although the Juke was awarded five stars by the Euro authorities, it was criticised for marginal front-seat occupant protection and whiplash protection, while its pedestrian protection for adults was considered poor.

The Pathfinder was also criticized by ANCAP for its poor pedestrian protection, but otherwise shaped up well.

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