Car safety ratings & programs

There are different safety rating systems for new and used cars.

To get an accurate comparison between cars and their safety ratings:

  • only compare cars of the same class
  • don’t compare used cars with new cars – the rating systems are different.

Used car safety ratings (UCSR)

Used car safety ratings (UCSR) assess:

  • on-road crash performance
  • how well the car protects its driver in a crash
  • how much damage the car will cause to other drivers involved in a crash.

UCSR are based on the records of over 7 million real car crashes in Australia and New Zealand where someone was killed or seriously injured. This rating system was developed by the Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) and has received international acclaim.

Download the Used Car Safety Ratings brochure [PDF 305 Kb].

Buyers considering a new or near new model vehicle that is not listed in this brochure should check the ANCAP rating on the how safe is your car website (External link).

The latest ratings are based on available data up until 2013. Later crashes have not been included. Occupant protection in smaller vehicles has improved significantly in recent years.

New car safety ratings

The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) (External link) conducts crash tests on the most top selling cars. These tests assess the protection a car gives to front seat occupants in serious front and side crashes.

ANCAP uses a star system to rate safety: five stars is the highest safety rating and one star is the lowest.

All Australian and New Zealand motoring clubs, all state governments, the New Zealand Government and the FIA Foundation support this Program. Studies conducted by the Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) (External link) have found that ANCAP crash test results are a good indicator of a new car’s on-road crash performance.

For more information visit the ANCAP (External link) website.

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