One of the most hotly anticipated cars of 2019, the Suzuki Jimny, has been crash tested by Euro NCAP - and the Japanese manufacturer is unlikely to be popping champagne over the result.
That's because the Jimny scored a three-star (out of five) rating, owing mostly to a less-than-stellar performance in an offset crash.
The official numbers were 73 per cent for Adult Occupant protection, 84 per for Child Occupant protection, 52 per cent for Vulnerable Road Users and 50 per cent for Safety Assist.
Never ones to mince words, the Euro NCAP report refers to multiple areas of the Jimny's safety offering as "weak", notably the passenger compartment, which was "extensively deformed" following an offset crash test. Also alarming, despite there being a driver airbag, the dummy's head still contacted the steering wheel.
"In the frontal offset test, there was insufficient pressure in the driver's airbag to prevent it from 'bottoming out', allowing the head to contact the steering wheel," the report reads.
"The passenger compartment was extensively deformed in the offset test, especially around the door-frame and the score for the driver's chest was penalised for this unstable collapse. Combined with marginal dummy readings, protection for this body area was rated as weak.
"Although dummy readings indicated good protection of the knees and femurs of both driver and passenger, structures in the instrument panel and dashboard were thought to pose a risk of injury to occupants of different sizes, and protection was rated as marginal.
"In the full-width, rigid-barrier impact protection of the head of the rear passenger dummy was rated as weak, based on dummy readings during the test and protection of the chest of both driver and rear passenger was marginal.
"Tests on the front seats and head restraints showed marginal protection against whiplash injury in a rear impact. A geometric assessment of the rear seats indicated good protection. The standard-fit auto emergency braking (AEB) system performed well in tests of its functionality at the low speeds, typical of city driving, at which many whiplash injuries are caused. However, the Jimny did not qualify for these points as Euro NCAP requires good head restraint performance as a pre-requisite for AEB points."
Still, how much (if at all) the results impact sales remains to be seen, but there will be plenty shopping for the rugged and boxy 4WD who care little for crash-test scores, what with the Jimny destined to spend more time off the road than on it.
The Jimny will launch in Australia in the first quarter of next year, with Suzuki Australia GM, Michael Pachota saying: “the Jimny is synonymous with the Suzuki brand and to have an all-new model on its way is something worth talking about. The Australian landscape will be a true test for the iconic 4WD and I have no doubt it will rise to the challenge.”
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