AA releases safety ratings

AA releases safety ratings

The Automobile Association has released its 2015 Used Car Safety Ratings guide, which includes 220 models, and is based of real-world crash data from here and across the Tasman.

This year the guide shows that 44% of used vehicles assessed received an excellent or good rating for occupant protection in a crash.

However, just 10% – 21 out of 217 – of the vehicles assessed earned a safe pick rating, which means they also provide good protection for occupants in other vehicles, pedestrians and motorcyclists in a crash.

At the bottom of the rating system, 71 models were considered poor or very poor and shouldn’t be considered as a safe purchase.

Click here to download the full list (click here).

AA Motoring Services general manager Stella Stocks says the guide enables buyers to easily assess which vehicle in any category will afford them the best protection in a crash.

“The ratings in the guide are based on reports from millions of actual crashes between 1987 and 2013 reported to police in New Zealand and Australia covering about 90% of all popular passenger and light commercial vehicles, which provides a good range of choice for motorists,” Stocks says.

“As more data is collected on each of the vehicles in the guide, we’re able to provide motorists with the best information possible enabling them to buy the safest car they can.”

There are top rating vehicles in every category and for the first time a vehicle in the light car category has earned a rating of excellent – the Ford Fiesta, manufactured between 2009 and 2013.

Stocks says motorists will note some cars, especially later models, missing from the guide.

“Enough crash data is required on each vehicle in the guide to ensure the rating is robust,” she explains. “If a particular model hasn’t been involved in many crashes, then there’s not enough data to consider. In those cases, motorists should review a vehicle’s rating as a new car.”

The AA and the NZ Transport Agency are members of the Vehicle Safety Research Group, which commissioned the analysis of the crash data by the Monash University Accident Research Centre.

Safe picks

Small cars

  • Holden Cruze JG/JH, 2009-13
  • Honda Civic, 2006-11
  • Peugeot 307, 2001-09
  • Subaru Impreza, 2007-11
  • Toyota Prius II, 2003-09
  • Volkswagen Golf/Jetta, 2004-09

Medium cars

  • Audi A4, 2001-08
  • Volkswagen Passat, 1998-2006
  • Large cars
  • BMW 5 Series E39, 1998-2003
  • Ford Falcon FG, 2008-13
  • Holden Statesman/Caprice WK/WL, 2003-06
  • Mercedes Benz E-Class W210, 1996-2002
  • Toyota Aurion, 2006-12
  • People movers
  • Honda Odyssey, 2004-09
  • Compact SUVs
  • Mitsubishi Outlander/ Peugeot 4007, 2006-12
  • Medium SUVs
  • Holden Captiva CG, 2006-13
  • Mazda CX-7, 2006-12
  • Nissan Pathfinder R51, 2005-13

Large SUVs

  • Ford Territory SX/SY, 2004-10
  • Mercedes Benz M-Class W163, 1998-2005
  • Toyota Kluger/Highlander, 2007-13
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