THE results of the first crash tests of the year have been revealed, and three SUVs have scored top safety ratings.
The Honda CR-V, Mercedes-Benz G-Class and SEAT Tarraco were all awarded five stars under Euro NCAP’s tougher 2019 regulations.
And even more impressive was the Tarraco’s score of 97 per cent in adult occupant protection, which is amongst the best achieved by a car in this category.
All three large off-roaders scored 90 per cent or more for adult protection, and over 80 per cent for child protection.
The trio also received extra points for including Intelligence Speed Assistance (ISA) features.
ISA systems are able to identify speed limits and prevent the car from speeding over that limit.
And despite such impressive safety features coming as standard, two of the SUVs are still rather affordable.
Honda’s new CR-V has a starting price of £25,995, while the Seat Tarraco weighs in at around £28,000.
But those looking to splash out on the G-Class will pay at least £94,000 for the luxury.
Michiel van Ratingen, Secretary General of Euro NCAP, said: “Here we have three new vehicles, competing in the same segment and getting top safety ratings.
“That’s impressive enough but the fact that all three off-roaders are equipped with pedestrian and cyclist AEB systems really demonstrates the power of consumer testing not only to encourage better performance but also to promote new technologies as standard-fit across Europe.”
In the 2018 tests, four large off-roaders were given five stars.
The BMW X5, Hyundai Santa Fe, Hyundai NEXO and VW Touareg all received top scores.
But the Jeep Wrangler was one of the worst performers of the year with just one star, while the Suzuki Jimny was also below par for an off-road vehicle.
Matthew Avery, Director of Research, Thatcham Research, said: “Last year we saw a couple of off-road vehicles with crash performance undermining their rugged looks.
“The three SUVs kicking off 2019’s Euro NCAP programme all performed very well in impact and collision avoidance tests.
“The Seat Tarraco’s 97 per cent score for Adult Occupant Protection is notable and will be the target for 2019, which looks like being a bumper year with many new models being tested.
“It’s also good to see the Mercedes-Benz G-Class achieve that tricky balance of keeping the charm of an old classic, while uplifting its safety performance.
“These vehicles are also setting a safety technology marker. All three have standard-fit Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) which operates effectively at different speeds and can detect pedestrians and cyclists. We’d expect all carmakers to fit AEB as standard on new models released in 2019, whatever the segment.
“This important safety technology that Euro NCAP has advocated since 2012 will now be standard fit in Europe following the recent announcement of the new European General Safety Regulations.”