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Safety Ratings Explained

ANCAP Safety Ratings Explained.

ANCAP safety ratings are published for a range of new passenger, sports utility (SUV) and light commercial vehicles (LCV) entering the Australian and New Zealand markets, using a rating system of 0 to 5 stars.

Our vision is:
Safe vehicles for all.

Our 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 or minimise the effects of a crash. These independent safety ratings are used to compare the relative safety between vehicles of similar mass.

ANCAP safety ratings are determined based on a series of internationally recognised, independent crash tests and safety assessments – involving a range of destructive physical crash tests, an assessment of on-board safety features and equipment, and performance testing of active collision avoidance technologies.

Vehicles are evaluated against four key areas:

  • Adult Occupant Protection (AOP)
  • Child Occupant Protection (COP)
  • Vulnerable Road User Protection (VRU)
  • Safety Assist (SA)

A range of tests and assessments are conducted within each area, with vehicles required to meet minimum score thresholds for each star rating level. The overall star rating of a vehicle is limited by its lowest performing area of assessment.

ANCAP Evolution Test Criteria - Vulnerable Road User Protection
ANCAP Evolution Test Criteria - SAFETY ASSIST

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

When buying a car, what should you look for?

To encourage continuous improvement by vehicle brands and ensure consumers are provided with the safest cars possible, ANCAP’s test criteria has increased incrementally over the past three decades. See our evolution timeline opposite.

In 2018, the ANCAP safety rating system experienced its greatest change – implementing new test and assessment protocols and scoring methods that are common across Australasia (Australia & New Zealand) and Europe. These requirements are now updated every two years.

While ANCAP’s rating criteria continues to broaden, the message remains simple.

Look for a vehicle which holds the maximum 5 star ANCAP safety rating with the latest ‘datestamp’.

We continually increase the requirements needed to achieve a 5 star rating to keep Australians and New Zealanders safer. The Rating Year datestamp is the easiest way to tell how current an ANCAP safety rating is.

The datestamp is an important element that sits alongside each ANCAP safety rating – it identifies the assessment criteria a vehicle has been tested against.

5 Star ANCAP Safety Rating

To learn more about the evolution of ANCAP and the criteria applied for each datestamped Rating Year, click here.

Check the ANCAP safety rating of your vehicle here.

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