18th Dec 2012 by Admin
What do the stars on an ANCAP rating mean? What rating should you look for when buying a car? We explain everything you need to know about ANCAP, as well as a few fun facts.
ANCAP stands for the Australasian New Car Assessment Program, which oversees independent crash tests on cars that are sold in Australia. ANCAP awards a star rating from one to five, depending on how the car performs in the tests.
Cars that receive a five-star rating, such as the Audi A6, achieve the highest international standards across all test criteria. So the more stars a car receives, the safer it is.
ANCAP uses test dummies to see what happens to the car’s occupants in a crash. It then analyses the data and ranks the car according to the five-star system.
Each car endures four internationally-recognised crash tests, undertaken by independent test laboratories. Tests include the frontal offset test and side impact test, which are two of the most common collisions:
A separate test can be undertaken to see how well a car protects pedestrians in the event of a crash. The car travels at 40 km/h and strikes a dummy pedestrian, measuring potential head and leg injuries.
Car manufacturers can also elect to have a pole test performed on cars that have head-protecting airbags.
Each car receives a score out of 37; it must score at least 12.5 in each of the frontal offset and side impact tests, and an overall score of at least 32.5 to receive a five-star rating.
Bonus points are awarded if the car has the following features:
Two points are also allocated if the car performs well in the pole test.
While they might be called dummies, the test models are anything but. Their high-tech components allow them to experience dozens of crash tests and demonstrate what the driver and passengers endure in a crash.
Two types of dummies are used – the Hybrid III (for frontal impact) and the EuroSID II (for side impact). Let’s take a closer look inside the Hybrid III:
When assessing a car’s ANCAP rating, take a look at the colours on the dummy diagrams. Red or brown is a ‘poor and weak’ result, indicating a high risk of serious injury or death arising from that injury.
According to ANCAP, occupants in a one-star rated car are twice as likely to be killed or seriously injured, compared to those in a five-star rated vehicle.
As well as advanced safety features, a five-star rated car has superior structural integrity. This means that it protects occupants by absorbing and dissipating the force of a crash. There is little movement inside the car, while the doors are kept closed and are able to be opened after the crash. Still wondering if a five-star rated car is worth it? The answer is in the stars.
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