MG GS becomes first Chinese auto to nab ANCAP'S top honour

MG GS becomes first Chinese-made car to earn top crash rating

Five-star ratings were awarded to the Swift GL Navigator, GL Navigator with Safety Pack and the GLX Turbo, but the base model Swift GL fell one star short.

The Australiasian new Car Assessment Program overnight awarded the MG GS, a small SUV competing against the likes of the Mazda CX-5, Nissan X-Trail and Toyota RAV4, a top five-star crash rating.

The timing for MG is therefore fortuitous, since ANCAP requirements accelerate for all vehicles tested from January 1 next year, to make it very hard to achieve a top rating without an effective AEB and/or lane support system.

Maximum scores were awarded to the light vehicle for the side pole crash test (two out of two) and the presence of seatbelt reminders (three out of three), while the frontal offset (14.39 out of 16) and side impact (15.74 out of 16) crash tests also delivered strong results. In 2007, the Chinese-made Brilliance BS6 was crash-tested in Germany.

Under ANCAP guidelines, a model's rating will be restricted to four stars or less if its frontal, side and pedestrian crash test results and equipment standards are not satisfactory, which exclude it from completing the side pole crash test that is necessary for a five-star rating. It was later withdrawn from sale in Europe in response to the poor result.

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ANCAP chief executive James Goodwin says the MG GS originally received a four-star score in January as it lacked intelligent seat belt reminders for the back seat, and had not been tested for a side pole impact.

It should be noted the five-star rating applies to only those MG GS models built from August 2017 and on-sale in October 2017.

Previous Chinese cars tested by ANCAP, which failed to cut the mustard, include the four-star Haval H9 (2015), three-star LDV G10 (2015) and two-star Great Wall Steed (2016). That means from next year, auto makers will have their crash-test rating assessed on the best-selling variant, instead of Australia's current process which gives lower scores to cheaper vehicles that have safety gear stripped from them.

This year marks the final stage of ANCAP's alignment with European NCAP's crash test regime.

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