Five-star safety ratings for some of Australia’s most popular new cars expire at the end of this year. Companies and fleets are now scrambling to secure vehicles by January 1, 2023, to avoid a job ban.
Traditions and fleet buyers are in a race against time to get their hands on popular new cars such as the Nissan Navara, Mitsubishi Triton, Toyota Prado and Mitsubishi Pajero Sport – amid production slowdowns and delivery bottlenecks – as the vehicles are among more than a dozen models . due to the loss of its five-star safety ratings later this year.
Five-star safety ratings have been mandated by fleet operators, mining companies – large and small – for the better part of a decade due to stricter health and safety guidelines.
However, the independent crash safety watchdog – the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) – has introduced a six-year validity period for five-star scores to give consumers a better chance to compare similar results.
The first deadline under the new rules – December 31, 2022 – will wipe out the oldest five-star ratings for more than a dozen new cars still on sale in Australia today.
Under the current system, a manufacturer has been able to advertise a car as having a five-star safety rating since 2010 – if the car is still on sale, such as the first-generation Volkswagen Amarok and Mitsubishi ASX – despite those scores. were issued under less stringent criteria, and vehicles may lack key technologies or the necessary body strength needed to earn today’s top marks.
Under the new system, which comes into effect on January 1, 2023, the five-star safety rating is valid for six calendar years (plus the year the car was tested), rather than indefinitely.
Top-selling cars such as the Toyota HiLux, Ford Ranger, Isuzu D-Max and Mazda BT-50 will not be affected by the changes, which take place on 31 December 2022 – and the Toyota LandCruiser 300 series is also open – as their five-star safety rating is newer. There is no ANCAP rating for the current generation Nissan Patrol.
drive understands that fleet companies are in the process of evaluating what the imminent expiration of a vehicle without a five-star safety rating means.
For example, while no changes to the design or safety technology of the Nissan Navara, Mitsubishi Triton or Toyota Prado are expected this year and next, a vehicle delivered in December 2022 will be permitted on a mine site or workplace with a five-star mandate, but an identical vehicle delivered in January 2023 does not.
“Any company that already has a fleet of five-star safety vehicles today – or any contractor that already operates a five-star safety vehicle today – will still be allowed to work on jobsites where five-star safety is mandatory “mandatory,” said one fleet expert who spoke with drive on the condition of anonymity.
“The problem is that any fleet or contractor that has ordered five-star safety vehicles – and is still waiting for delivery – could be let down if the vehicle is delivered in 2023.
“While many private and public fleet operators are aware of the upcoming changes, many contractors on mining sites or other five-star safety sites are not even aware of it.
“If they don’t get delivery by the end of this year, they will have to cancel their order and go to the end of the line with another brand’s vehicle that actually has a five-star safety rating for 2023.”
A fleet expert said it was important to note that five-star points for work vehicles already in use today would remain valid – and next year these vehicles would be allowed on work sites with five-star mandates.
“The key point is that even though the vehicle may be technically identical – and still have the same safety features and crashworthiness – delivery in December 2022 versus January 2023 could make a significant difference between whether is a vehicle allowed on the site or not.”
for today drive he is not aware of any major fleet or mining operator breaching his five-star safety standards.
“This change has the potential to distract many contractors. However, there are many other vehicle brands in these categories that have a five-star rating.
“Finding supplies becomes a problem. Slow production and high demand have caused long wait times. This means that some contractors or fleets may need to keep their existing vehicles until a valid five-star replacement vehicle is available next year.”
Prolonged investigation of drive since the expiration dates were announced in February 2022, affected manufacturers have been repeatedly asked whether they plan to make expensive safety updates to the affected vehicles this late in their model cycle – or persist with the unrated vehicle until a new model is available.
To date, no vehicle manufacturer has said whether any changes to their vehicles are imminent.
With less than two months to go before the December 31, 2022 deadline, it now seems clear that most of the affected vehicles will remain unrated – or be withdrawn from showrooms as they reach the end of their model life.
Ratings of crash tests from 2015 and earlier, which expire at the end of 2022:
- Toyota Prado, tested in 2011, five stars
- Volkswagen Amarok, tested in 2011, five stars
- Mitsubishi Triton, tested in 2015, five stars
- Nissan Navara, tested in 2015, five stars
- Mitsubishi Pajero Sport, tested in 2015, five stars
- Mitsubishi ASX, tested in 2014, five stars
- Mazda 2, tested in 2015, five stars
- Mazda CX-3, 2015 test, five stars
- Suzuki Vitara, tested in 2015, five stars
- Van LDV G10, tested in 2015, three stars
- LDV V80 van, tested 2013, three stars
- Suzuki SX4 S-Cross, tested 2013, five stars
- VW Passat, 2015 test, five stars
- Mini Cooper, tested 2014, four stars
- BMW i3, tested in 2014, five stars (the car was taken from car showrooms)
- Alfa Romeo Giulietta, verified 2011, five stars (car removed from showrooms)
- Fiat 500, tested 2008, five stars
Crash test rankings from 2016 ending at the end of 2023:
- Cab chassis Toyota LandCruiser 70 series, tested 2016, five stars
- Mazda CX-9, 2016 test, five stars
- Mazda MX-5, 2016 test, five stars
- Jeep Cherokee, tested 2016, five stars (removed from car showrooms)
Crash test ratings from 2017, which expire at the end of 2024:
- LDV T60 Ute, tested 2017, five stars
- LDV D90 SUV, tested 2017, five stars
- Suzuki Swift, tested in 2017, five stars
- MG ZS, tested 2017, four stars
- Hyundai i30, 2017 test, five stars
- Jeep Compass, tested 2017, five stars
- Kia Rio and Kia Stonic tested in 2017, five stars