Euro NCAP awards Fiat Panda zero-stars for safety

Euro NCAP awards Fiat Panda zero-stars for safety

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles also had a new vehicle in the same round of Euro NCAP testing, in the form of the Jeep Wrangler.

"With nothing more than a seatbelt reminder scoring points in Euro NCAP's Safety Assist box, the vehicle fails to reach even a single star, a dubious distinction matched only by the Punto in 2017", the safety authority said. Automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assist and blind-spot monitoring system are some safety features that are lacking in the 2018 Jeep Wrangler.

Fiat says: "We take the safety of customers and road users extremely seriously and the Fiat panda and latest Jeep Wrangler comply with all safety legislation in every county in which they are sold".

To add to FCA's woes, the new Jeep Wrangler managed just a one star rating, with the man from Thatcham expressing astonishment that any auto at this price doesn't get AEB fitted.

The Panda and Punto - which was tested 12 months ago - at least have the excuse of being old cars that Euro NCAP felt the need to test against the latest safety requirements.

The safety of children seated in the rear was of specific concern to experts, with its Child Occupant Protection score of 16% falling significantly short of the 79% average. The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration awarded the previous generation a three-star rating.

Although not an official comment, it's believed that if the Jeep tested by the Euro NCAP had been equipped with the upcoming AEB system, its rating would be considerably higher, although no specifics were given. Fiat Panda also performed badly in whiplash protection for rear seat passengers and also where chest protection for front seat occupants is concerned.

The Wrangler will arrive in Australia in the first quarter of next year.

These tests are for the European market, so it will be interesting to see what the NHTSA and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) tests show for crash results here in North America. The SUV has been expertly engineered with a lightweight aluminium body structure and integrated battery pack to provide outstanding crash protection for occupants.