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Save Fuel and Still Get 5-Star Safety

17 NOVEMBER, 2009

NEW safety rating results have found that cars with low fuel consumption can also achieve the highest safety ratings.

The Mini Cooper diesel hatch, the Ford Fiesta ECOnetic diesel hatch, the Volvo C30 diesel hatch, all models of Toyota's environmental flagship, and the hybrid Prius, have all achieved a 5-star safety rating from Australia's leading independent vehicle safety advocate, the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP).

RACV Chief Engineer, Vehicles, and ANCAP Program Manager, Michael Case said the results demonstrated that new car buyers can get fuel savings without having to sacrifice 5-star safety.

"These ratings show that that manufacturers can make a range of fuel efficient vehicles which do not compromise safety results," Mr Case said.

Other ANCAP results show the recently released Subaru Liberty Exiga and the upgraded Hyundai Santa Fe with 4 cylinder engine also achieved 5-star ANCAP ratings. The Honda City sedan achieved a 4-star rating.  The results released today are from crash tests undertaken by ANCAP in Australia and by ANCAP's sister organisation EuroNCAP, to internationally recognised protocols.

"Consumers can also see from today's results that Subaru continues to achieve 5-star ANCAP results across all its range and that Hyundai with its 4 cylinder Santa Fe has improved its model to also achieve a 5-star ANCAP result," said ANCAP Council Chair and VicRoads Manager Vehicle Safety, Ross McArthur.

"The Honda City missed out on 5 stars because ESC is not available. ANCAP has required ESC for 5 stars since the beginning of 2008, so the lack of ESC for the City is disappointing."

TAC Road Safety Manager Samantha Cockfield said all of the 5-star models include head-protecting side airbags or curtains, antilock brakes (ABS) with electronic brake distribution (EBD) and electronic stability control (ESC) as standard. Importantly the results apply to all models in the various ranges, not only luxury specified vehicles.

"There were mixed results for pedestrian protection, with the City, Exiga and Fiesta ECOnetic achieving 3 out of 4 stars. The upgraded Santa Fe improved from zero to one star," said Ms Cockfield.

ANCAP is supported by all Australian and New Zealand motoring clubs, all Australian state governments, the New Zealand government, the Victorian Transport Accident Commission, NRMA Insurance and the FIA Foundation.  For a full list of ANCAP's vehicle safety ratings, and other vehicle safety information, go to www.howsafeisyourcar.com.au

Media Contacts:

TAC:               Emily Bogue, Media and Communications Adviser – 0429416 778
RACV:             Jo Robertson, Communications Adviser – 0407 910 278
VicRoads:        Bree Taylor, Media Adviser – 9854 2499


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