A new bunch of fives

Kid-carters and all-paw hot­ties alike hit the max­i­mum score

Herald Sun - Motoring - - News - STU­ART MARTIN stu­art.martin@cars­guide.com.au

A CON­STEL­LA­TION of five stars has been be­stowed on the new Toy­ota Corolla sedan, Subaru’s new pocket-rocket WRX and Peu­geot’s 5008 people mover. The Aus­tralasian New Car As­sess­ment Pro­gram rank­ing adds to a grow­ing list of more than 250 five-star new­car choices.

But the 5008 wears its clus­ter de­spite scor­ing a “mar­ginal” pedes­trian im­pact re­sult. The seven-seat fam­ily wagon, re­leased here late last year, was scored us­ing Euro NCAP re­sults. Last year, ANCAP’s min­i­mum pedes­trian im­pact re­quire­ment for a fives­tar rank was “mar­ginal”; it has since been in­creased to “good.”

The wagon scored an over­all mark of 36.41/37 us­ing 2013 Euro­pean re­sults, with a safety fea­tures list that in­cludes dual front, front-side and cur­tain airbags (through all three rows), with anti-lock brakes, sta­bil­ity con­trol among the fea­tures.

The crash test re­port said the pas­sen­ger com­part­ment held its shape and all doors re­mained closed dur­ing the crash test but that “af­ter the crash the driver’s door could be opened with high man­ual ef­fort”.

Fol­low­ing be­lat­edly in the tracks of its hatch­back sib­ling, the Corolla sedan scored 34.88 out of 37. ANCAP praises it for “good struc­tural pro­tec­tion and of­fers a re­vers­ing cam­era as stan­dard,” as well as dual front, driver’s knee, front-side and cur­tain airbags, anti-lock brakes and sta­bil­ity con­trol. Whiplash pro­tec­tion was ranked good but pedes­trian pro­tec­tion scored only an ac­cept­able rank­ing dur­ing the tests, which showed “the pas­sen­ger com­part­ment held its shape well in the frontal off­set test” and that “all doors re­mained closed dur­ing the crash and af­ter the crash all doors could be opened with nor­mal ef­fort.”

Subaru kept its range’s fives­tar sta­tus in­tact with its new WRX per­for­mance sedan, which trumped the Toy­ota with bet­ter pedes­trian pro­tec­tion. The WRX is among only a hand­ful of cars that rank as “good” for pedes­trian pro­tec­tion (the 2014 min­i­mum for a fives­tar re­sult is “ac­cept­able”).

Subaru has fit­ted the new WRX with dual front, front- side, cur­tain and driver’s knee airbag, as well as anti-lock brakes and sta­bil­ity con­trol — the sedan scored well dur­ing im­pact test­ing, re­tain­ing door func­tion and pas­sen­ger cell in­tegrity for an over­all score of 35.85 out of 37.

ANCAP chair­man Lauch­lan McIntosh calls for yet higher lev­els of stan­dard safety kit.

“Un­for­tu­nately none of the mod­els in to­day’s re­lease is equipped with au­ton­o­mous emer­gency brak­ing — an im­por­tant safety fea­ture that is now com­mon on pop­u­lar ve­hi­cles in Europe and the US,” he says.

Higher fives: Subaru WRX; (be­low, from left) Corolla side and frontal

im­pacts, Peu­geor 5008

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