Safety Ratings Explained

ANCAP Safety Ratings Explained.

You have twice the chance of being killed or seriously injured in a 3 star ANCAP safety rated car compared to a 5 star ANCAP safety rated car.1

Compare these three vehicles, all crash tested at 64 km/h.

ANCAP safety ratings are published using a rating system of 1 to 5 stars. These star ratings indicate the level of safety a vehicle provides for occupants and pedestrians in the event of a crash, as well as its ability - through technology - to avoid a crash.

ANCAP safety ratings are determined based on a series of internationally recognised, independent crash tests and safety assessments.

In all physical crash tests, dummies are used to measure the forces and likely injuries a driver, passenger or pedestrian may sustain during a crash. Observations are also made on the displacement of dummies during the crash, as well as the structural impact on the vehicle's occupant compartment. Vehicles must achieve minimum scores across all physical crash tests (for each ANCAP safety rating level), as well as meet minimum requirements for the inclusion of safety equipment and technologies.

ANCAP crash tests are conducted on new passenger and light commercial vehicles entering the Australian and New Zealand markets with each model assessed under identical testing standards and conditions. ANCAP safety ratings can be used to compare the relative safety between cars of similar mass.

To achieve the maximum 5 star ANCAP safety rating, a vehicle must perform to the highest level across all crash tests and assessments.

So the more stars, the safer we’ll be?

The diagrams below show typical injuries to the driver and passenger for each ANCAP safety rating based on the frontal offset test conducted at 64 km/h.

  • Safety

    In a 5 star ANCAP safety rated vehicle, the prominence of green (good) for the head, body and legs, illustrates a high level of protection and survivability for both driver and passenger.

    Yellow (acceptable) on the lower legs and the chest of the passenger, shows only a slight chance of serious injury to these areas, which are not likely to be life threatening.

    ANCAP recommends 5 star rated cars. Accept nothing less.

    Sre diagram 5star Star rating 5star
  • Safety

    In a 4 star ANCAP safety rated car,
    green (good) illustrates a high level of protection of the head and neck, greatly reducing the risk of serious injury or death resulting from impact to these areas.

    Orange (marginal) indicates that there is moderate risk of serious injury to the chest of both driver and passenger, as well as the upper and lower right leg of the driver.

    5 star rated cars offer the highest level of protection.

    Sre diagram 4star Star rating 4star
  • Safety

    In a 3 star ANCAP safety rated car, the prominence of orange (marginal) for the driver's head, chest, upper legs and lower right leg indicates a moderate risk of serious injury or death. The passenger fares better than the driver with good protection of the head and lower left leg green (good).

    Yellow (acceptable) for the torso, upper left leg and right lower leg of the passenger indicates a lower risk of serious injury.

    ANCAP does not recommend purchasing cars with less than 5 stars.

    Sre diagram 3star Star rating 3star
  • Safety

    In a 2 star ANCAP safety rated car, there is a high risk of serious injury or death resulting from injury to the head and right leg of the driver. Red (poor) for the head, lower right leg and both feet of the driver indicate that these injuries are likely to be serious and life threatening.

    Orange (marginal) shown on the body of the driver and passenger also indicates high levels of exposure to serious injury or death.

    ANCAP does not recommend purchasing cars with less than 5 stars.

    Sre diagram 2star Star rating 2star
  • Safety

    In a 1 star ANCAP safety rated car, there is a very high risk of death or serious injury, with low levels of protection for both occupants, particularly resulting from injury to the head of both driver and passenger, and lower limbs of the driver red (poor).

    While the passenger fares better than the driver, the risk of serious injury or death is high from head injury. Occupants are likely to die from the injuries sustained in a 1 star rated car.

    ANCAP recommends 5 star rated cars. Accept nothing less.

    Sre diagram 1star Star rating 1star

In interpreting the coloured results on the dummy diagrams for each safety rating level, it is important to note that a red result (poor) on any limb or part of the body indicates that there is a high risk of serious injury or death resulting from that injury alone. Consumers should therefore not assume that an injury to the foot area - for both 1 and 2 star rated vehicles - is necessarily less serious, or less life threatening, than the same crash result in other parts of the body.

Choosing a car that could save your life is simple.
Look for the 5 star ANCAP logo at your local dealership.
Check the safety rating of your vehicle here.

1. Folksam analysis 2010

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