Last month Hyundai Tucson was crash tested at the Euro NCAP where it secured an impressive 5-star safety rating. However a month later, when the crossover was crash tested at the Latin NCAP, it only managed to score a pitiful a zero-star. Its simply because the one tested by Euro NCAP in November was the latest 4th generation model whereas the one tested by the Latin NCAP in December is the old 3rd generation model which is still available for sale in some parts of the world including Pakistan.
Talking about the crash test, protection offered to the driver and front passenger head and neck in the frontal impact test was good. It should be noted that the unit of Hyundai Tucson tested was equipped with dual front airbags and seatbelt pretensioners for the front compartment as standard. Both the driver’s and front passenger’s chests showed adequate protection. However, driver’s knees were offered marginal protection since they come in contact with dangerous structures behind the fascia. On the other hand, front passenger’s knees showed good protection. The bodyshell was rated as stable and is capable of withstanding further loadings.
In side impact tests, head, abdomen and pelvis protection for occupants was rated good while chest protection was termed adequate. The old Tucson scored well in adult protection for frontal and side impacts, as well as in whiplash protection. However, since it lacks side airbags as standard, the Tucson wasn’t able to achieve higher safety points. The biggest concern was Tucson’s child occupant protection which was rated poor. This was primarily due to the fact that it only offers a lap belt in the center rear seat and secondly, Hyundai declined to select Child Restraint Systems (CRS) for the tests. Pedestrian safety was rated at overall average whereas it scored poor on upper leg protection and low on head protection.
Commenting on the result, Alejandro Furas, Secretary General of Latin NCAP said:
“Latin NCAP is disappointed by Hyundai’s attitude to Latin American consumers’ health and safety. It is unbelievable that an SUV like the Tucson does not offer side impact protection and ESC as standard. The long delay in replacement parts delivery is also concerning. We make an urgent call to Hyundai for a dramatic change in basic safety strategy in LAC and level it to its policy in Europe, Australia and US, among others. Latin NCAP believes that consumer information known as labelling can dramatically and quickly improve the safety level of cars as a result of a voluntary action.”
Hyundai Tucson- Latin NCAP zero star crash test
Adding to this, Stephan Brodziak, the Latin NCAP Chairman said:
“Once again, thanks to the Latin NCAP Program, we can know the risks that certain corporations, mostly Latin Americans, expose us to due to the sale of low safety vehicles. Hyundai gives us an unpleasant surprise to see that one of its most popular models in the region, the Hyundai Tucson, which has had significant sales in our countries, gets 0 stars safety. This is one more example of the discrimination in vehicle safety that the inhabitants of the region have to suffer from some car manufacturers that use our region as a sub-standard market to maximize their profits. We demand that Hyundai urgently implement the necessary safety standards to offer adequate protection to consumers and road users on all their models. Latin America and the Caribbean not only deserve better vehicle safety, they need it now.”
A 3d animation professional with over 20 years of industry experience having served in leading organizations & production facilities of Pakistan, an avid car enthusiast and petrolhead with an affection to deliver writings to help shape opinions. Formerly written for PakWheels as well as major publications including Dawn. Founder of CarSpiritPK.com