11 May 2017
Zero stars all round for Chevrolet Onix and Kia Rio Sedan

Latin NCAP’s second round of results for 2017 were released today with a disappointing zero stars result for both the Kia Rio Sedan and Chevrolet Onix. The Chevrolet Onix is the best-selling car in Brazil and performed particularly badly in side impact protection, while the Rio offered the worst safety performance result in adult occupant protection compared to any other NCAP programme where it has been tested.

The Chevrolet Onix, which is manufactured in Brazil, scored zero stars in adult occupant protection and three stars for child occupant protection. The model had been tested in frontal crash in 2014 when it achieved three stars for adult occupant protection. In order to estimate the result under Latin NCAP’s new crash test protocols (2016) an additional side impact test was conducted. The Onix performed poorly in the test as the side impact brought a high compression in the chest of the adult and showed a high penetration into the structure. The Onix did not offer side impact energy absorption devices in its structure, only bars in its doors. Considering the tests results the Onix would fail to pass the UN basic side impact protection regulation (UN95).

The child passengers showed acceptable protection achieving three stars however the model only offers a lap seatbelt in the rear centre position and lacks ISOFIX anchorages. The rear right door opened during the test exposing the child passengers to higher risks.

The Kia Rio Sedan, manufactured in Korea, also disappointed with zero stars in adult occupant protection and one star for child occupant protection. However, the car offers a stable structure in the frontal crash and good structural development for side impact. The manufacturer offers the Rio Sedan without airbags and no ABS in the basic version. The lack of airbags and lack of good performing seatbelts explain the poor results in both frontal occupants’ heads and chests.

Kia recently announced to Latin NCAP that the new Picanto and new Rio will offer at least a driver airbag in all new Latin American versions. Kia has committed to sponsor the New Kia Rio Sedan to be tested by Latin NCAP to show the safety progress in the new model, though without a passenger airbag it is still likely to do badly if the new car performs like the one recently tested by Latin NCAP.

The Kia scored only one star for child occupant protection as it did not offer ISOFIX anchorages or 3 point belts in all rear seating positions.

Alejandro Furas, Secretary General of Latin NCAP said:

It is very disappointing for Latin NCAP that major manufacturers like GM and Kia are continuing to sell zero star cars in Latin America. Car buyers deserve much better than these sub-standard results from companies that know perfectly well how to produce much safer cars. These unimpressive results should serve as a strong lesson to Governments across the region that manufacturers cannot be trusted to provide minimum levels of safety.

That is why Latin NCAP is calling for all Governments in Latin America to urgently adopt both the UN’s front and side impact crash test standards. Action is needed now to eliminate the scourge of zero star death traps that continue to be sold by manufacturers prepared to offer sub-standard cars that they wouldn’t be allowed to sell in Europe or North America. Such double standard behavior is unacceptable and must be stopped.

María Fernanda Rodríguez, Latin NCAP President said:

“These results confirm once again the fundamental role of governments in protecting the lives of the inhabitants of their countries. There are some manufacturers that voluntarily offer safety above the legal requirements, there are others, as we have seen again today, that strive to increase profit in favour of safety. This is extremely serious, for the last seven years we have had poor results and we have yet to see any country in the region implement the basic safety standards that the UN recommends. Car manufacturers do produce better levels of safety when mandated to do so in other markets.

Fortunately, consumers, armed with information from Latin NCAP are starting to choose safer cars. However faster change will only be achieved with government action, therefore I appeal to conscience of legislators to make safety a priority and standard on vehicles in our region”

The third round of Latin NCAP results will be released in June.

Chevrolet Onix
Read the full crash test report
Watch the crash test video
Download crash test image

Kia Rio Sedan
Read the full crash test report
Watch the crash test video
Download crash test image