Trio of Three Stars but shocking Zero for the Nissan ‘Hardbody’
Global NCAP and the Automobile Association (AA) South Africa launch the second round of #SaferCarsForAfrica crash test results today with the welcome support of the FIA Foundation and Bloomberg Philanthropies. The four models tested show a wide range of safety performance, from zero to three stars for adult protection, with the Nissan NP300 ‘Hardbody’ scoring the lowest ratings which result in a high probability of life threatening injury in a crash.
The models tested are: Nissan NP300 Hardbody, Hyundai i20, Kia Picanto and Toyota Yaris. Global NCAP chose the entry-level version of each model and as a result all were fitted with at least one airbag as standard. The results highlight significant differences in the structural integrity of the vehicles tested.
Collins Khumalo, CEO of the AA of South Africa said,
“Of concern with these results is that the most expensive vehicle tested in this round – the Nissan NP300 Hardbody – produced the lowest score of all tests completed to date, achieving a 00.00 score and zero stars. There should be no zero rated vehicles on our roads.
“What these results show is that three vehicles priced lower than the Nissan produced three-star ratings for adult occupancy indicating that safety does not have to be tied to price. They also emphasize that cars may not be what they seem based purely on looks and descriptions, and that until many more vehicles are tested, this issue may be a much bigger problem throughout Africa than we originally believed.”
David Ward, Secretary General of Global NCAP said,
“A trio of three star results are acceptable but the zero star Nissan NP300 is shockingly bad. It is astonishing that a global company like Nissan can produce a car today as poorly engineered as this. The NP300 ‘Hardbody’ is ridiculously misnamed as its body shell has collapsed. Nissan also claim the car benefits from a so called ‘safety shield’ but this is grossly misleading. Our test shows that the occupant compartment completely fails to absorb the energy of the crash resulting in a high risk of fatality or serious injury. “
Saul Billingsley, Executive Director of the FIA Foundation said,
“The #SaferCarsForAfrica campaign introduces essential transparency to the South African car market, and these results show that consumers are still getting a raw deal. The ironically-named ‘Hardbody’ is the worst of the bunch, but all these car makers should be doing better, and offering the same high standard of safety in South Africa, and across the African continent, as they do in Europe and the US.”
Kelly Larson, who directs the road safety program at Bloomberg Philanthropies, said:
“All car companies have the technology to make safe cars. The automobile industry must agree to meet the UN recommendations on vehicle safety standards across all market regions, including Africa, so all passengers can be protected in the event of a crash.”