The all-new 2016 Hyundai Tucson went on sale in Australia and New Zealand in August 2015. The model is also edue to be launched in Malaysia later this week. Hyundai’s latest five-seater SUV was awarded four stars in the latest assessment by Australia’s ANCAP, which was not too happy with the Tucson's results.
“The result is disappointing and unexpected for a new vehicle in this competitive class,” ANCAP Chief Executive Officer James Goodwin said.
“Testing revealed the structural integrity of the driver footwell was compromised in the frontal offset test and there was also excessive movement of the brake pedal, meaning the vehicle could not achieve 5 stars,” he said.
In other words, the fifth star was not withheld from the Hyundai on technicalities like non-availability of advanced driver’s assistance features (blind spot monitoring, autonomous emergency braking, lane keeping assist etc etc.), but on the poor performance of the vehicle’s body structure.
“The structural integrity of the driver footwell was compromised in the frontal offset crash test. There was also excessive rearward and upward movement of the brake pedal,” reads ANCAP’s technical report on the Tucson’s frontal offset collision test.
“Driver leg and foot protection was marginal in the frontal offset test. There was a slight risk of serious chest injury to the driver in this test,” reads the report.
ANCAP adds that Hyundai is looking into the matter, and will be making some changes to the Tucson’s design.
“It’s encouraging however, that Hyundai has taken immediate steps following the test to make design and production changes to improve the safety of the model,” Mr Goodwin said.
“This demonstrates the importance of the independent testing conducted by ANCAP to continually improve the safety of the vehicle fleet,” he said.
“ANCAP has agreed to test the vehicle once the design changes are in production and it’s hoped the countermeasures will improve the vehicle’s overall rating,” Mr Goodwin said.