Crash tests lead to safety scare

  • Fault found on Kia Venga means deliveries are suspended
  • Only one out of the five cars tested receives the top mark
  • One new model manages just three out of five stars

Five new family cars have been put through the latest Euro NCAP safety test with only one scoring the maximum five stars.

While the Toyota Verso got the top safety rating, the Nissan Cube, SEAT Exeo, and Kia Venga received four stars, while the Citroen Nemo Multispace was given a disappointing three stars.

The Kia Venga's test revealed the driver's seat belt was partially cut by the seat rail. This prompted Kia to suspend delivery of 450 cars that were due to go to customers and recalling four cars that had been delivered for modification work to prevent the problem happening again.

The Nemo Multispace had the worst marks particularly for adult protection. The lack of curtain airbags, seats that offer poor whiplash protection and no Electronic Stability Control (ESC) fitted, even as an option, resulted in the Citroen's three star score.

The independent crash test organisation noted that van-based passenger cars, such as the Nemo Multispace, often lack safety features that can normally be found on standard cars.  

These ratings are based on a new, stricter scoring system used by Euro NCAP which was introduced in February 2009. The overall score is based on adult occupant protection, child occupant protection, pedestrian protection and safety assist.

To achieve a maximum five stars a car has to achieve at least 40 per cent in pedestrian protection, 80 per cent in adult protection and 75 per cent for child protection.

Any customers who are concerned about the Kia Venga can contact Kia Customer Services on 0845 601 7521