Euro NCAP has released its biggest batch of crash test data for the year, with five vehicles achieving top marks.
The Audi A3 Sportback, Seat Leon, Isuzu D-Max, Kia Sorento and Land Rover Defender all scored five out of five.
The Audi and Seat both use the same MQB-II platform used on the new Volkswagen Golf, but get a centre airbag to improve results in the far-side impact protection test.
Euro NCAP says the VW Group cars perform on a par with the Golf, but the Leon in particular scores highly for its front-end design, achieving a score of 92 per cent for ‘adult occupant protection’.
The Isuzu D-Max pickup truck was also highly commended for getting top marks despite ‘competing in a segment that is not famous for highlighting safety’. The Crew Cab model gets automatic emergency braking and a new centre airbag.
However, its weak point was the fact that its weight and front structure made it slightly more ‘aggressive’ to other vehicles in a collision, something that was also noted about the new Land Rover Defender.
The final five-star car, the Kia Sorento, retained its top rating thanks to its large suite of driver assistance systems, despite performing poorly in the frontal offset crash.
The electric Honda e just missed out on top marks, scoring four out of five, losing a star because it doesn’t have some of the more advanced safety features. Meanwhile, the Hyundai i10 scored three stars, losing points because the driver’s pelvis slipped under the lap belt in the full-width frontal impact test.
Euro NCAP’s secretary general, Michiel van Ratingen, said: “Poor crash compatibility between vehicles has been a problem for years. Now, in 2020, we have a frontal test which can assess how a vehicle performs in this regard and can penalise those cars that perform poorly.
“This is a first for safety assessment and should lead to better, more compatible designs in the future.”