Thatcham has praised manufacturers including Alfa Romeo and Seat for the high levels of safety technology and AEB fitted to its two new models as standard.
The Alfa Romeo Giulia and Seat Ateca achieved a top, five-star score in the latest round of Euro NCAP tests, with their portfolios of safety equipment crucial in securing the rating.
Both feature sophisticated Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) systems that operate in both lower speed (City) and higher speed (Inter-Urban) environments, significantly reducing the likelihood of a crash.
The two new cars are also equipped with Pedestrian Protection AEB technology, which is designed to further reduce the risk to vulnerable road users and became part of the Euro NCAP test procedure at the beginning of 2016.
“Alfa Romeo and Seat deserve praise for the high level of safety technology on these new cars and in particular for including advanced automatic braking as standard,” said Peter Shaw, chief executive of Thatcham Research.
“It’s clear that manufacturers are increasingly responding to consumer calls for standard fit safety and simplifying the buying decision. UK motorists can now choose any Giulia or Ateca model and be safe in the knowledge that they and other road users are better protected by a vital technology that is proven to significantly reduce crashes.”
The combination of low and high speed AEB on the new Giulia and Ateca improves the possibility of crash avoidance at a wider range of speeds and as a result is likely to reduce both personal injury claims and the cost of crash damage.
“Claims data shows that higher speed AEB systems have the potential to reduce injury crashes by up to 45%,” added Matthew Avery, director of research at Thatcham Research.
“Car makers that don’t offer AEB should follow the example set by vehicles achieving a five-star Euro NCAP rating and embrace this life-saving safety automatic braking technology,” added Shaw.
“And where AEB is currently available as an option it could easily be made standard instead, having an immediate positive effect on road safety.”