25-year-old Euro NCAP releases first safety ratings of 2022

  • Euro NCAP’s first round of 2022 testing
  • Volkwagen has much to celebrate
  • Euro NCAP celebrates 25-year anniversary

Euro NCAP’s first round of testing for 2022 is complete, and the results are in as it celebrates its 25th anniversary year. With Lexus, Renault and Volkwagen achieving five-star ratings for their models, BMW’s 2 Series Coupe is awarded four stars.

In a year where mandatory fitment of autonomous emergency braking (AEB) technology across Europe and speed assistance on new vehicle types will be integrated into the testing body’s rigorous checks, Euro NCAP is also celebrating 25 years of its independent assessing process. 

Euro NCAP at 25

Euro NCAP was set up in 1996 to identify and benchmark safety measures designed on new passenger vehicles. Supported by a number of European governments and recognised by motoring, consumer and insurance organisation, the body released its first set of ratings in 1997. Since then, it has established and earned respect for its crash test ratings. In 2022, it released van safety ratings for the second year running. Manufacturers submit cars voluntarily for testing or Euro NCAP selects a model itself.

Its findings have informed car makers to design and create safer vehicles, making improvements in chassis structure, occupant airbag integration and child protection. Areas of assessement include extensive front, side and pole crash protection, pedestrian protection and AEB response in both simple and more complex scenarios.

Euro NCAP 2022 results: first round

In this testing period, seven vehicles were assessed, including three from Volkswagen. The BMW 2 Series Coupe struggled with reliable AEB in complex situations involving other cars or pedestrians, but showed adequate performance in the other testing areas, including simple AEB scenarios. Good crash protection, merits a ‘creditable four-star’ rating.

Euro NCAP was surprised to note that Lexus engineers failed to provide all the technical information usually provided. This oversight didn’t hurt the performance of the Lexus NX, which shares its architecture with the RAV4 and earned five stars.

Renault’s Megane E-TECH is the first vehicle from the brand using its purpose-built electrification architecture. With a strong performance from AEB and featuring improved body and restraint systems, the Megane E-TECH will be in a persuasive position when it brings its five-star all-electric compact hatchback to the UK market.

With three Volkwagen models in testing, loyal fans of the marque will be delighted to learn that the Polo, Taigo and ID.5 all received five stars too. The Polo was particularly lauded for ‘a solid facelift’, new centre airbags and more capable crash avoidance systems and more technology.

Secretary general, Michiel van Ratingen, says, ‘It’s good to start the anniversary year with some high-performing cars. Euro NCAP has been setting the standard for car safety for twenty-five years. The next ten will bring huge challenges, with assisted and automated driving very much at the forefront of the changes ahead.

‘Our focus on ADAS – advanced driver assistance systems – over the last ten years or so makes us well-placed to rate these new aspects of vehicle technology and to continue to provide key information to car buyers in the future.’