Euro NCAP has revealed its list of safest cars for the UK and Europe. For the first time, the list is made up of fully electric models.
The top safety performers come from the safety organisation’s best-in-class winners from 2022 – and include two Chinese newcomers as well as two Tesla models.
The winners are:
- Hyundai Ioniq 6 – Large Family Car category
- Ora Funky Cat – Small Family Car Category
- Tesla Model S – Executive Car category and Pure Electric category
- Tesla Model Y – Small Off-Roader category
- Wey Coffee 01 – Large Off-Roader category
Amid a record year for testing, all five cars achieved the highest overall scores, based on their results for Adult Occupant Protection, Child Occupant Protection, Vulnerable User Protection and Safety Assist technologies.
Delving further, the list of top performers reveals that the Ioniq 6 achieved exceptionally high results in Adult Occupant Protection with 97%. In the case of child occupants, it provided good protection for all critical body regions of both the 6 and 10 year old dummies in the frontal offset and side barrier tests scoring maximum points in this part of the assessment.
The rise of the Chinese brands
The line-up also underscores that 2022 was notable for the number of new Chinese brands coming to Europe and achieving great results. This is on the back of some less than successful attempts to break into the European market in the past.
Euro NCAP’s testing found the Ora Funky Cat, a rival to models such as the Cupra Born and Renault Zoe, is exceptionally well equipped and outperformed several well-established brands.
The second Chinese brand car in the list is the Wey Coffee 01, again highly equipped and performing well in all categories – but Euro NCAP noted that Lexus RX came in a close second in this category.
Tesla also performed well. The Model S and Model Y were both high achievers in Adult Occupant Protection and both vehicles achieved the highest score of 98% in Safety Assist of all the vehicles in this list. Tesla Model S was also the best-in-class achiever in the Pure Electric category.
Michiel van Ratingen, Euro NCAP’s secretary general, said: “2022 has been one of Euro NCAP’s busiest years yet and we have seen a lot of new carmakers and new technologies. It’s clear a good Euro NCAP rating is seen by car manufacturers as critical to success in Europe. This can only mean better safety equipment and safer cars for European consumers all round.”
This news is welcome, however, there have been concerns over the weight and size of modern EV’s, in particular for pedestrian safety.
It is hoped that EV weights will begin to decline once solid state batteries prove viable for road cars. With their much higher energy density compared to lithium-ion chemistries, there should be a reduction in mass.