All new vehicles sold in Australia and surrounding areas MUST undergo testing to determine, in a level of stars up to five, how safe that car is. The higher the number and, ostensibly, the safer the car. The <strong>Australasian New Car Assessment Program</strong> is what is used and it’s a substantial overview of what makes a car tick the boxes safety wise.
From January 1 of 2018, <strong>ANCAP</strong> changed the parameters in what they were looking for in categories. There are four key areas: <strong>Adult Occupant Protection</strong>, <strong>Child Occupant Protection</strong>, <strong>Vulnerable Road User Protection</strong>, and <strong>Safety Assist</strong>.
First up is Adult Occupant Protection. ANCAP looks at the kind of protection, the kind of safety, offered to the most likely passengers in the front and second row seats of a car. They look at offset impacts, side impacts, whiplash injuries for front and second row, Autonomous Emergency Braking in a city setting, and rate the categories appropriately. Full width and frontal offset are the highest for adults, with a score of 8 being applied along with 8 for Side Impact and Pole (oblique). <img class=”aligncenter size-full wp-image-9218″ src=”http://www.privatefleet.com.au/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/DIAGRAM-frontal-offset.jpg” alt=”” width=”467″ height=”306″ />That last one is not uncommon, as it’s been found that drivers looking at an object in a crash situation have a higher tendency to impact that object.To achieve a five star rating for Adult Occupant Protection, the areas must achieve a total of 80% of the possible maximum score of 38. 80% is also the minimum requirement for the Child Occupant Protection, which has a maximum score of 49. There are just four margins here, Dynamic (Front) at 16 points, Dynamic (Side) with 8, 12 points for Child Restraint Installation, and 13 for On Board Features.
On the star rating, Adult Occupant and Child Occupant both have 80% to reach five stars. 70% is four stars, 60% for three stars, 50% for two stars, and 40% for just one star. Vulnerable Road User Protection and Safety Assist have 60% and 70% respectively.<img class=”aligncenter size-full wp-image-7416″ src=”http://www.privatefleet.com.au/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/airbags.jpg” alt=”” width=”250″ height=”200″ />Vulnerable Road User Protection takes a look at Head Impact (24 points), with 6 points apiece for Upper Leg Impact, Lower Leg Impact, pedestrian related AEB (Autonomous Emergency Braking) and cyclist related AEB. The specifications here are about looking at frontal designs of vehicles; will it mitigate injury to a pedestrian and/or cyclist, and will it overall mitigate or avoid impact with pedestrians and/or cyclists?
The final sector, Safety Assist, measures the amount of safety features (the presence factor) and effectiveness of those systems. The current maximum score is 13, with 2020 moving that to 16. Speed Assistance Systems are rated to 3 points, Seat Belt reminders also rate as 3, and Lane Support Systems as 4. AEB in an inter-urban environment is current 3, with that increasing to 4 in 2020. A new category, Junction Assist, with two points, comes in next year.
A.N.C.A.P. themselves says:
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<h4>In the real-world…</h4>
AEB systems use camera, radar and/or lidar technology to detect the speed and distance of objects in the vehicle’s path and automatically brake if the driver does not respond in order to avoid or minimise the severity of a crash.
<h4>At our test centre…</h4>
Over 100 different AEB test scenarios form part of our assessment with a vehicle’s ability to autonomously brake at lower city speeds (AEB City); at faster highway speeds (AEB Interurban); at stationery vehicle targets; at moving targets; and at braking targets all taken into consideration. Vulnerable road users are also considered, with collision avoidance testing undertaken to encourage and determine the effectiveness of more sophisticated AEB systems, detecting and preventing or minimising collisions with pedestrians and cyclists (AEB VRU) – at daytime and at night.
<img src=”https://www.ancap.com.au/static/pages/safety_testing_explained/autonomous_emergencybraking_diagram-5e5234dae3459e1a08876729582545104436bef230fd90d5c042beea8a007d0a.png” alt=”Autonomous emergencybraking diagram” />
Scores achieved in each physical and performance test feed into the respective area of assessment. The overall star rating of a vehicle is limited by its lowest performing area of assessment.
(With thanks to A.N.C.A.P.)