Australasian crash test programs

Australasian New Car Assessment Program
  • The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) involves crash testing new vehicles to determine the likely injury levels and survival prospects of occupants and pedestrians in the most common types of crashes.  
  • ANCAP also assesses the crash avoidance technology used in them.
Used Car Safety Ratings 
  • Used Car Safety Ratings (UCSR) are based on analysis of several thousand Australian and New Zealand crashes in which someone was killed or seriously injured. 
  • Driver protection ratings indicate the relative safety of vehicles in preventing severe injury to their drivers in the event of a crash. 
What’s the difference?
  • ANCAP doesn’t test every make and model, instead, it concentrates on popular models that represent the bulk of those on Australian roads. 
  • The ANCAP program crashes brand new cars in a laboratory under a tightly controlled conditions, while UCSR results are based on the analysis of real world crashes.
  • In some cases, where the vehicle specification is similar, the results of comparable overseas new car assessment programs may be evaluated and included in ANCAP results.
  • UCSR assesses all Australian and New Zealand crashes in which someone was killed or seriously injured, but it can take several years to collect enough crash data to calculate a score for any particular model. 
  • ANCAP safety ratings demonstrate a vehicle's level of occupant and pedestrian protection whereas UCSR assess the effects of the crash only on the driver. 
How to use the information
  • The Used Car Safety Ratings and the Australasian New Car Assessment Program provide an easy to understand star rating to tell you how well your next new or used car purchase will protect you in a crash. 
  • We suggest using the UCSR rating as primary reference and ANCAP for new vehicles and those that do not yet have a UCSR score. 
  • While ANCAP and UCSR systems are not directly comparable, they have one thing in common - the higher the star rating, the better the vehicle will perform in a crash.
  • You should buy the safest car that you can afford.
  • Because occupants of heavier cars tend to fare better than those in lighter cars, ANCAP crash test results should not be compared across categories where large weight differences can exist. 
  • UCSR results can be compared across different categories as they are derived from actual on-road crashes.
  • While there is generally a good correlation between the results of the two programs, there are occasions when the ratings will differ. This reflects the wider range of crash scenarios assessed by UCSR.
  • ANCAP test requirements continue to evolve, so while a car that was assessed and given a star rating in the past will retain that rating, it may not attain the same rating if tested to later requirements. 
  • To assist in identifying the requirements against which the vehicle was tested, ANCAP results are date stamped with the rating year.
  • Look for the UCSR "Safe Pick" rating. These vehicles have been assessed as providing a high level of injury protection for their drivers and other road users. 
More information
For more information about ANCAP, including the latest crash test results, visit the ANCAP website.
For UCSR results see http://www.racq.com.au/cars-and-driving/cars/buying-a-car/used-car-safety-ratings

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