Safety in ‘the office’
More vans are joining the four-star crash-test ranks
in Europe but ANCAP officials are satisfied the vehicles would perform the same way as Australian market versions.
However, the models selected for the crash test were fitted with driver and passenger airbags, which are optional equipment. It is not clear whether the vans would achieve a four-star rating without the airbag options.
Several new vans now achieve four-star crash test ratings out of a possible five, including the Hyundai iLoad, several versions of the Mercedes-Benz Vito and the VWTransporter.
The Vito, when configured for curtain airbags to be fitted, scores five stars and is the only van in Australia to do so.
Vans with three stars include the Suzuki APV, Ford Transit and Toyota HiAce.
Of all vans tested, Mitsubishi’s Express is the worst performer by a considerable margin, scoring one star out of five.
The Kangoo scored 27.73 out of 37 points for occupant protection and the Berlingo scored 27.20. Both were rated marginal when it came to pedestrian crash safety, with the front edge of the bonnet a particular problem.
Renault and Citroen fit antilock brakes as standard in their vehicles and also have optional side airbags and electronic stability control.
The safety of vans is likely to become more of an issue in the next few years with employers putting more emphasis on protecting workers in vehicles in line with occupational health and safety policies.
Renault Kangoo: Earns four stars when fitted with front airbags