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takata airbag dummy jpg 5348930 ver1.0 1280 720 e1507202318598

ANCAP — the safety story 30 years on

It’s 30 years since the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) was introduced.

Established in the early 1993, it was just the second New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) in the world after the United States.

Since then ANCAP and its star ratings have become the trusted voice when it comes to questions of new vehicle safety.

ANCAP began as a two-year campaign to shine a light on the comparable levels of safety offered by Australia’s most popular selling models.

The first vehicles tested in 1993 were fitted with minimal safety features and underwent just one crash test — the full width frontal test conducted at 56km/h.

In stark contrast, vehicles rated by ANCAP today are subject to seven destructive crash tests covering a range of crash scenarios, as well as a suite of collision avoidance performance tests comprising hundreds of varying daytime and night-time scenarios involving other vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists.

Over the past three years, the value of ANCAP in enhancing the safety of the Australian vehicle fleet is conservatively estimated at $442.2 million. 

In 2021 alone, ANCAP’s influence in expediting the fitment of autonomous emergency braking, lane keep assist and centre airbags can be attributed to the saving of nine lives and a reduction of 236 serious injuries

The Australian Government has once again solidified its commitment to ANCAP with funding support of $16.3 million over the next five years.

Assistant Minster for Infrastructure and Transport, Senator Carol Brown confirmed the Government’s commitment during ANCAP’s 30th Anniversary commemorative celebrations in Sydney.

“The Government’s National Road Safety Strategy places ‘Safe Vehicles’ as a cornerstone to road safety improvement,” Senator Brown said.

“Encouraging the prioritisation and proliferation of vehicle safety features and promoting consumer and fleet uptake of newer, greener and inherently safer vehicles, are clear actions identified in the NRSS and we’re proud to support ANCAP in delivering these objectives.

“Every life lost on our roads is one too many, and this renewed commitment will have a direct impact on reducing the number of lives lost and serious injuries sustained on Australia’s roads.”

The funding commitment will also assist ANCAP in expanding its influence to address road safety challenges among a broader range vehicle types and market segments through the testing and provision of consumer information for commercial vans and large utilities (pick-up trucks).

The Australian Government is one of 21 member organisations that provide funding to ANCAP and has demonstrated its unwavering commitment to ANCAP since it became a contributing member in 2009. 

Support for ANCAP is also received through industry collaboration and the provision of test results from sister organisation, Euro NCAP. 

ANCAP testing procedures were recently expanded to include a greater focus to gender equality and the aging population of drivers/occupants.

Current tests also more closely simulate real road environments and examine human-machine interface (HMI) design as well as testing and assessment of assisted and automated driving systems.


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