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ANCAP: Suzuki Jimny falls short with three stars

Suzuki’s new-generation Jimny off-roader receives three-star ANCAP safety rating

24 Jan 2019

AS EXPECTED, the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) has followed its European counterpart’s lead and issued the new-generation Suzuki Jimny off-roader a three-star safety rating as it failed to meet three of the four test categories.
“The Jimny misses the mark with structural and design weaknesses, poor protection of pedestrians and cyclists, and lack of effective safety aids,” ANCAP chief executive officer James Goodwin said.
In the Adult Occupant Protection category, the Jimny scored 73.5 per cent (27.94 out of 38), with it only achieving perfect results in the side impact (eight out of eight) and oblique pole (eight out of eight) crash tests.
The frontal offset crash test (4.55 out eight) saw ‘weak’ protection for the driver’s chest, ‘marginal’ protection for the driver’s head and knees and the passenger’s knees, and ‘adequate’ protection for the driver’s feet and the passenger’s chest.
“Engineers observed a number of issues in the frontal offset test, including excessive deformation of the passenger compartment, with penalties applied for loss of structural integrity, steering wheel and pedal intrusion, and knee injury risk,” Mr Goodwin said.
“Insufficient inflation of the driver’s airbag was also observed, with the dummy contacting the steering wheel through the airbag, indicating reduced protection in more severe crashes.”
The Jimny fared better in the full-width frontal crash test (5.76 out of eight), where the rear passenger’s head protection was ‘weak’ and chest protection was ‘marginal’. Driver chest protection was also ‘marginal’.
Whiplash protection (1.62 out two) was rated as ‘marginal’ for front-row occupants but ‘good’ for rear passengers, which led to an automatic fail in the low-speed autonomous emergency braking (AEB) test (zero out of four), despite the system’s ‘good’ performance.
Conversely, the Jimny excelled in the Child Occupant Protection category, scoring 84.5 per cent (41.39 out of 49), with only ‘adequate’ neck protection for the six- and 10-year-old dummies found in the frontal offset crash test (15.39 out of 16).
The side impact crash test returned another perfect result (eight out eight) alongside the child restraint installation testing (12 out of 12), while on-board safety features (six out of 13) are limited.
In the Vulnerable Road User Protection category, the Jimny scored 52.2 per cent (25.06 out of 48), with ‘poor’ protection along its bonnet’s edge and A-pillars contributing towards the result in the head impacts test (14.42 out of 24).
Upper leg (3.87 out of six) and lower leg (six out of six) impacts testing saw mixed pelvis protection, with ‘good’ and ‘poor’ results recorded along the bumper.
The Jimny’s AEB system again came under fire, with its pedestrian detection functionality (0.78 out of six) assessed as ‘weak’ overall, while its lack of support for cyclists led to another automatic fail (zero out of six).
The Safety Assist category was also an opportunity for the Jimny, with it scoring 50.2 per cent (6.52 out of 13), as only the fitment of seatbelt reminders for all four seats earned it a perfect result (three out three).
While a manual speed limiter is standard on the Jimny, it is not fitted with an active system that can detect the speed limit and automatically adjust. As a result, it fell short in the speed assistance systems (1.25 out three) test.
Similarly, lane departure warning is standard, while blind-spot monitoring and lane-keep assist are unavailable, leading to the Jimny’s lacklustre result in the lane support systems test (0.25 out of four).
High-speed performance of the AEB system (2.02 out three) was better, rated as ‘good’ in all scenarios bar two, which yielded ‘weak’ and ‘marginal’ results. Overall, it was determined to be ‘adequate’.
“The results show that the fundamentals of vehicle safety are still critical, and simply fitting an AEB system is not enough to earn a good rating,” Mr Goodwin said.
“While marketed for off-road driving, these vehicles also spend much of their time on regular roads, and buyers shouldn’t have to forego safety.”

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