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Is the 2020 Hyundai Palisade less safe than 2013 Toyota Prado? ANCAP awards the former with four stars while the latter still wears a soon-to-expire maximum rating

Hyundai’s Palisade has been on sale since late 2020, but has now just been awarded a four-star crash safety rating.

The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) has handed the Hyundai Palisade a four-star crash-test rating after being on sale for nearly a year and a half.

According to ANCAP, the safety body tested the Hyundai Palisade so long after its launch and just before a mid-lifecycle update due later this year because it is “the only top 10 selling model within the large SUV (<$70,000) segment without an independent safety rating”.

All cars are tested against the criteria of the year in which they are released, and as such, the Palisade was assessed on the current 2020-2022 protocol.

However, the top-selling car in the large SUV class, the Toyota Prado which has moved more than six times as many units as the Palisade this year, wears a five-star rating from testing in 2011. Of note, this rating will expire at the end of this year.

The top safety rating is applicable to all Prados sold from August 2013 onwards, with Toyota updating specifications of the family SUV to include active safety systems such as autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and lane support systems (LSS) from August 2017.

Because of the age of the Toyota Prado, it has not been assessed under the same, more stringent 2020-2022 procedures as the Hyundai Palisade.

To somewhat address this however, ANCAP will rollout a six-year expiration date for crash-test reults from 2025 onwards.

Other cars in the same class tested on the new procedures include the Isuzu MU-X, Kia Sorento, Toyota Kluger and Subaru Outback, while popular models like the Hyundai Santa Fe, Mazda CX-9, Mitsubishi Pajero Sport, Skoda Kodiaq and Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace have a maximum safety rating on older testing procedures.

Of note, the new-gen Jeep Grand Cherokee that was launched last month is yet to be crash tested.

The Palisade results yielded scores of 79, 88, 63 and 63 per cent for the adult occupant protection, child occupant protection, vulnerable road user protection and safety assist categories respectively.

As such, because the Palisade scored less than 80 per cent in the adult occupant protections test, and less than 70 per cent safety assist examination, it was handed a four-star rating.

“The Hyundai Palisade fell short in two of the four key areas of assessment which unfortunately has seen it unable to meet the top level of safety that families and fleets have come to expect,” said ANCAP chief executive officer Carla Hoorweg.

ANCAP also criticised the Palisade’s active safety systems, stating that the autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and lane keep assistance (LKA) “lack the sophistication of systems fitted to peer vehicles assessed to the same criteria”.

The body also called out the lack of AEB junction support, multi-collision braking and speed limit information.

“ANCAP’s role is to provide clear, reliable and independent consumer information for the broadest possible range of popular-selling models, and this rating and timing of the upcoming model update presents an opportunity for Hyundai to factor in the necessary safety-related upgrades for Palisade to five stars,” Ms Hoorweg said.

“This is an extremely competitive market and segment so we’d encourage Hyundai to do what they can to bring the Palisade to equal footing with its competitors.”

However, Hyundai is expected to address some of the Palisade’s safety shortfalls in an update due shortly.

Whether it will be enough for a five-star rating is still to be seen, but ANCAP will reassess the facelifted Palisade when it hits Australian shores.

Speaking to CarsGuide, Hyundai Australia general manager of corporate affairs Bill Thomas said: “The Palisade was unrated by ANCAP at launch because the vehicle was not sold in Europe and therefore does not receive a EuroNCAP rating.

“At the time, we did say that ANCAP in Australia may choose to safety test Palisade and we would obviously co-operate fully with that test,” he said.

“We have not announced safety assist specifications for the upcoming Palisade, but the features will be upgraded and we intend to perform the necessary testing to aim for a five-star result. We aren’t in the business of predicting any scores, of course, but five stars that will be the aim.”