Euro NCAP has revealed the biggest crash test changes ‘in a decade’ as it pushes for improved occupant protection and post-crash safety.
The results of the tests dictate the safety ratings given to new cars, which are scored for how well they protect adult occupants, child occupants and vulnerable road users, as well as the on-board safety assistance technology.
The changes will be brought in later this year and the key update will be a new moving barrier in the moving car frontal crash test.
It has been designed to calculate how a vehicle’s front end crash structure affects injuries in other cars involved in a collision, as well as its own occupants.
Because side impacts account for the second-highest frequency of death or serious injury in collisions, Euro NCAP has increased the severity of this test, which now also looks at the ‘far side’ of the driver after impact and how they might interact with a front seat passenger.
Driver assistance systems will also face more rigorous test scenarios, which now includes the organisation’s first step towards evaluating a vehicle’s driver monitoring system.
Euro NCAP has worked with the International Association of Fire and Rescue Services to make a post-crash safety rating system. T
his has been designed to score a vehicle on how accurate and easily available extraction information is, as well as other factors such as ease of extraction.
Matthew Avery, director of research at Thatcham Research and Euro NCAP board member, said: ‘This is a new yardstick that vehicles will be measured against.
‘We and Euro NCAP look forward to working closely with carmaker safety teams to drive towards strong results for these society-benefiting tests.
‘These are the biggest changes to Euro NCAP’s impact testing protocols in a decade. Chief amongst them is the new “compatibility” impact test.
‘The objective is to encourage makers of larger vehicles to share some of the burden of the impact with smaller vehicles.
‘Historically, SUVs and other big cars have offered very good protection to their occupants. However, the smaller vehicles they sometimes crash into can fare less well.
‘In the new compatibility test, if the larger vehicle is too stiff in an impact scenario, it will be penalised accordingly. This levels the playing field for all vehicle sizes, which is a win-win for road safety.’
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