Vehicles crashed deliberately in the pursuit of safety will be on display from Tuesday to Thursday this week in Aotea Square in central Auckland as part of an NZ Transport Agency drive to encourage the purchase of safer cars.
The NZTA's Chief Executive Geoff Dangerfield says the display of ANCAP (Australasian New Car Assessment Programme) crash-test vehicles has been brought over from Australia to highlight how much better five star safety rated cars protect their passengers in the event of a crash.
'Choosing safer vehicles is a simple way that individual drivers can reduce deaths and injuries by keeping themselves and their families safer on the roads,' says Mr Dangerfield.
"If all New Zealanders drove five star safety rated cars, it's estimated the road toll could be reduced by one third. Based on the latest annual road toll, that's nearly 100 people whose lives would not have been lost last year alone."
The display shows the difference in damage sustained by a three-star rated crash test vehicle (the Chinese-built Cherry J1) and a five-star vehicle (the Hyundai I45) that were crashed in the course of being ANCAP rated. Visitors will be able to see how the occupants of each car would have fared in the crash, and information panels encourage people to consider safety ratings the next time they're in the market for a new car.
The ANCAP programme involves physically crash testing new vehicles that are on sale in Australia and New Zealand to produce a star rating on a five point scale. The rating is based on how well the vehicles protect their occupants and pedestrians in a range of crash situations. Approximately 12-15 vehicle models per year are tested. Data from the European New Car Assessment Programme is also used to produce ratings for a large number of additional vehicle models. The NZTA and the New Zealand AA are both members of ANCAP.
The vehicles will be on display near the Town Hall in Aotea Square from 9.30am to 4.30pm from Tuesday to Thursday this week, supported throughout by staff from NZTA and Auckland Transport. In addition, the Police Serious Crash Unit will be on hand between 11.30am to 2.00pm each day to talk about their work.
The NZTA recently updated its RightCar website which provides a one-stop shop of vehicle information for people considering buying a new vehicle. It provides information on vehicle safety ratings, fuel economy and emissions ratings. The RightCar website can be found at www.rightcar.govt.nz(external link)