The Renault Modus is the first supermini to be awarded a five star rating. Meanwhile, the Kia Picanto only just makes three stars for occupant protection, although it gets four stars for child protection. The Fiat Panda gets only two stars for child protection.
The latest Euro NCAP tests focused on 14 cars and reveal that while most models are making massive improvements for occupancy safety – seven in total received the maximum five stars – pedestrian protection is lagging behind. Overall, nine models score just one star in the pedestrian test.
The two best all-rounders are the Citroen C4 and Seat Altea, scoring five stars for occupant protection, four for child protection and three for pedestrian protection.
“It is encouraging to have two cars achieving three stars for pedestrian protection although the majority are still only achieving one star. I would urge manufacturers to implement improvements in pedestrian protection ahead of the European Standards which will take effect from 2005,” says David Jamieson, UK Transport Minister.
Euro NCAP tests cars from all segments every six months. The front impact test is conducted at 40mph, the side impact test at 30mph and the pedestrian test at 25mph.