Double the risk of death in 40 percent of New Zealand’s cars
People are twice as likely to die in a crash if the car they’re travelling in was built before 2000. To demonstrate that, the AA and Transport Agency has today revealed the result of a car-to-car crash test conducted this week by independent vehicle safety advocate ANCAP (Australasian New Car Assessment Programme). The average age of cars in New Zealand is more than 14 years. Transport Agency data shows cars built before 2000, which represents nearly 40percent of all passenger cars and SUVS on New Zealand roads, are involved in 57 percent of fatalities. Outcomes improve hugely a decade later. Cars produced between 2010 and 2015, which make up 17 percent of the fleet, were involved in 10 percent of fatalities. This week a 1998 Toyota Corolla was lined up against its 2015-built counterpart, which has a five star rating, the 1998 Corolla was built before the current frontal impact rule was applied that sets minimum safety standards for cars sold in New Zealand. It’s also not equipped with life-saving airbags. “This week’s crash test shows the driver in the older vehicle would likely have been killed or very seriously injured,” Ms Stocks says.