Euro NCAP (European New Cars Assessment Program), established in 1997 independently assesses new and popular cars made to be sold in Europe to ascertain their safety levels in order to provide consumers ready information to guide them in making their buying decisions.

Images courtesy of Car Scoops

Since then, they have dedicated huge resources materially and manpower to test cars and award corresponding stars to indicate their safety levels. From their nerve calming 5 stars to the high BP inducing 1 star to no star at all (though these days cars get awarded at least one star), Euro NCAP has kept automakers on their toes in coming out with new technologies to help improve their active and passive safety systems.

Now they have focused on pedestrian safety and from early results available, it seems like if all things go according to plan, pedestrian deaths and injuries arising from impacts with cars will soon be greatly reduced with the introduction of the new Autonomous Pedestrian Detection test to check how cars equipped with those systems detect and prevent collisions with pedestrians actually perform.

According to Car Scoops, “this will put vehicles through three separate scenarios, simulating adults walking and running into the model’s path and children stepping out behind parked cars. To earn a good score, cars featuring the automated systems need to be able to prevent collisions with dummies at speeds of up to 40 km/h (25 mph). Between 40-60 km/h (25-37 mph), the test aims to reduce collision speeds to less than 40 km/h (25 mph), making the impact more “survivable”.

Europe’s road death toll has declined significantly over the past 20 years. Still, in 2014, pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists accounted for 47 percent of the continent’s 26,000 road deaths. It is estimated that for each life lost, there are four permanently disabling injuries, which include damage to the spinal cord or the brain, and eight serious injuries.

More collisions occur when distracted drivers fail to brake or apply the brakes too late or too gently. This is where the AEB (Autonomous Emergency Braking) intervenes and uses its lasers, radars and/or cameras to detect imminent collisions, performing an effective emergency stop or reducing the impact speed as much as possible. 

Euro NCAP is improving pedestrian protection since 1997. These tests led to vehicles being designed with more “pedestrian-friendly” front ends. The AEB systems effectiveness began testing back in 2013, but until now it was tested only in car-to-car collisions. Some of the models that were evaluated by the European safety specialists are the Audi Q7, BMW 2-Series, BMW i3, Ford Mondeo, Lexus NX, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, MINI Cooper, Volvo V40 and XC90, Toyota Avensis and the Volkswagen Passat”. 

Participating cars; Volvo, Volkswagen, Mercedes and Ford.

This is great news as improved safety on roads all over the world is for all and sundry.

Well-done guys.
                                                       Video credit: Youtube.

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