ichiel van Ratingen, Euro NCAP Secretary General says: ‘Our test protocols have evolved significantly over the past few years. There are more tests and the requirements have become more stringent. Despite this, many manufacturers have engineered their latest cars to achieve the highest score. On the other hand, we see that some manufacturers continue to offer popular best sellers without making the necessary incremental updates to safety. It is those models that obviously fall behind other, more modern cars competing in the same category.’
The current model of Aygo and its twins lack basic items such as side impact airbags and electronic stability control as standard equipment. In response to Euro NCAP’s tests, Toyota has made a commitment to make the following items standard by July 2013 in all European countries:
• side thorax airbag
• side head curtain airbag
• electronic stability control
• passenger seatbelt reminder
• ISOFIX and top-tether in rear outboard seats
PSA Peugeot-Citroën has also committed to do the same with its 107 and C1 models.
To encourage this greater fitment, Euro NCAP has rated the car with this equipment onboard. Dr van Ratingen: 'With this non-standard equipment fitted, the Aygo achieves a three-star result; without it, the rating would probably have been much worse. Side impact airbags and electronic stability control are standard on many cars in this category and our tests demonstrate how important it is for manufacturers to keep their cars up to date when it comes to safety. As our protocols develop, cars last tested many years ago should not be assumed to compare well with more modern vehicles. Consumers should buy cars on the basis that the more recent the star rating, the safer the car.'