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Pedestrian safety tests ‘disappointing’ – NCAP

Euro NCAP has called on vehicle manufacturers to improve the pedestrian protection of new cars, after its latest crash test results revealed most vehicles are still performing badly.

“Manufacturers have risen to the challenge for occupant safety and child protection, it is now time for them to redouble their efforts and move forwards in this safety area,” says Euro NCAP chairman, Claes Tingvall.

Out of the 12 cars tested, only the VW Golf and Honda Jazz, managed to achieve more than a two-star rating. The Jazz is the first supermini to be awarded three stars for pedestrian protection.

The newly launched Peugeot 407, promoted by the French manufacturer as one of the safest cars for pedestrian protection, achieved just a two-star rating.

“While Honda continues to lead in the development of pedestrian-friendly car fronts, I am disappointed to see that other manufacturers lag so far behind,” says Tingvall. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, meanwhile, is calling for active safety systems, such as electronic stability protection, to be included in the ratings.

“The Euro NCAP tests are clearly relevant, and safety is now a very big selling point for manufacturers. Renault for instance, is renowned for being a safe manufacturer,” says Nigel Wonnacott of the SMMT.

“Our concern however is that while the tests are very good at assessing passive safety in terms of impact, they don’t encompass active safety systems such as ESP. In terms of pedestrian protection, the manufacturers are working hard to improve in this area and companies such as Honda are leading the way.”

Of the vehicles tested, 60% achieved a maximum five stars for occupant protection, while most of the remainder achieved four stars. The Fiat Doblo scored three stars.

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