She bought a

Jeep gets a crush­ing Euro NCAP score as Honda raises the bar

The Courier-Mail - Motoring - - CAR NEWS -

THE new Honda Civic has re­ceived a safety boost from Europe just as Aus­tralian sales are about to start.

But the same test pro­gram pro­duced a dread­ful re­sult for the Jeep Com­pass.

In the mid­dle of a sat­u­ra­tion ad­ver­tis­ing cam­paign to at­tract new buy­ers to the tra­di­tion­ally ma­cho mar­que, the Com­pass com­pact SUV rein­tro­duced in Jan­uary scored a way-be­lowa­v­er­age two stars.

‘‘ Many car mak­ers have moved on and so have we,’’ says Euro NCAP sec­re­tary­gen­eral Michiel van Ratin­gen.

‘‘ Cars based on older tech­nol­ogy, brushed up and mar­keted as new, are not pro­vid­ing the same lev­els of safety as the new­est mod­els de­vel­oped against the new tar­gets. Con­sumers in­ter­ested in a fair com­par­i­son will not be fooled by these re­sults.’’

Jeep spokes­woman Lenore Fletcher’s re­sponse: ‘‘ If that ve­hi­cle were tested at the Aus­tralian NCAP, we strongly be­lieve — and our mod­el­ling in­di­cates this — it would ob­tain four stars.’’

She says the Com­pass con­tin­ues with the fun­da­men­tals of the model orig­i­nally re­leased in 2006 but main­tains it has the full ar­ray of ac­tive and pas­sive safety mea­sures. She says the Euro­pean model is 100kg heav­ier than the one sold here, which ad­versely af­fects its pedes­trian safety score.

The new Civic, re­leased this week, was among the mod­els to achieve the max­i­mum five-star rat­ing from Euro NCAP de­spite re­cent changes that have lifted the bar for the Euro­pean safety agency. The re­vi­sions mean that a five-star car has to man­aged an over­all 80 per cent score, while also man­ag­ing 80 per cent of the points for adult pro­tec­tion, 75 per cent in child pro­tec­tion, 60 per cent in pedes­trian pro­tec­tion and 60 per cent in safety as­sist.

As van Ratin­gen says, ‘‘ A five-star rat­ing these days means a lot more than a fives­tar some years ago.’’.

He praises the Civic for high scores in all crash-test as­sess­ments, as well as Honda’s op­tional col­li­sion mit­i­ga­tion brake sys­tem, which is radar-based.

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