Thatcham has completed an initiative aimed at proving its own methods of bodywork repair meet those set down by Euro NCAP.
The primary aim of the company’s Safe Repair Project was to validate repairs on vehicles where there are known differences in panel joining methods from those used in manufacture.
Particular areas of significance were the techniques used for repairing key structural points such as chassis legs or complete B-post reinforcements, where safety is paramount and the correct repair method imperative.
The three vehicles chosen for the recent project were the Vauxhall Astra H, the Vauxhall Vectra C and the Volkswagen Golf V.
The Vauxhall Astra H had the front chassis leg replaced, whilst the Vectra and Golf each had the B Post replaced.
All three vehicles were repaired according to Thatcham’s repair methods, in each case requiring similar structural repairs, but very different and specific repair techniques.
Once each car had been repaired the three vehicles were crashed in accordance with the Euro NCAP test using the standard side and frontal impact protocols.
Thatcham said all three fared extremely well with the repair proving robust enough to withstand a sever impact test.
The effects on the dummy used inside each motor were well within test limits.
Andrew Miller, director of research at Thatcham said: “This project is another example of where Thatcham is leading the field in research relevant to repair.
“Our researched repair methods are now proven to restore the safety capability of the modern high Euro NCAP scoring vehicles, thus providing reassurance to the consumer, repairer and insurer.”
Thatcham will now continue to validate specific structural repair methods, reporting the results back to vehicle manufacturers and working closely with repairers, insurers and manufacturers to provide the Kitemarked repairer with a safe repair.