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Road safety tip: choose a crash-tested car

Buying a car is both an exciting and nerve-racking experience. With such a large investment, you want to make sure that you are getting the most out of your money.

Chances are factors such as fuel efficiency, comfort and reliability are at the forefront of your mind, but one of the main things you should be looking for is safety.

Some cars may look the part but hold up fairly badly in a crash, while others could be more robust.

It’s worthwhile asking a salesman about safety, but if you want to do your own investigation then you can use ANCAP – the Australasian New Car Assessment Program.

ANCAP is an organisation dedicated to providing consumers with independent advice and information about how a car holds up and protects its passengers in the event of a front or side on collision.

The initiative makes tests results available to the public so that it can educate drivers about road safety. It even works with manufacturers and importers to influence safety improvements.

The organisation is worldwide and has been operating for nearly 20 years – having begun in 1993 – and has published results about more than 400 vehicles.

“ANCAP currently conducts a suite of five internationally recognised safety tests including a 40 per cent frontal offset crash test,” chairman Lauchlan McIntosh said in a statement issued last week (August 15).

Mr McIntosh explained that ANCAP is always keeping a close eye on overseas developments so that they can make sure the testing program in Australasia is up to scratch.

“We are monitoring developments in vehicle safety and the crash testing field worldwide so that we can incorporate best practice into our Australasian test regime,” he said.

He went on to say that it is important to be aware of international movements as there are still many vehicles being sold in the Australasian market that do not perform highly in the crash tests.

That said, recently released models often rate very highly. ANCAP uses a five-star rating system and new cars that have all five stars include the Hyundai i30, the Holden Colorado, the BMW-3 series and the Honda Civic.

Those that have low ratings include the Chery J11 and the Mahindra Pik-Up, both of which are sitting on a two.

It may be worth exploring the ANCAP website before you purchase your next vehicle – it’s better to be safe than sorry.

However, in the unfortunate event that you are involved in an accident, then you may like to know that you could be eligible for compensation.

There are lawyers in Sydney that can help you make a claim on a no win no fee basis.

Car accident compensation can cover things such as medical costs and reimburse for time taken off work.

© 2012 
Gerard Malouf & Partners
 — Personal Injury Compensation Lawyers

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