Currently reading: Ford Mustang scores two stars in Euro NCAP test - with video
American muscle car fared less well than rivals for protection of child occupants and its shortage of safety equipment
Sam Sheehan
News
2 mins read
25 January 2017

The Ford Mustang has scored two stars in a Euro NCAP crash test, making it the first car from a large manufacturer to receive such a low score since 2008.

The American muscle car fared badly in frontal offset tests – where the car is impacted 40% off-centre – with its driver and passenger airbags described as “inflating insufficiently to properly restrain occupants”.

In full-width frontal tests, a crash test dummy in the back slid under its seatbelt, increasing the risk of injuries to the abdomen. NCAP said the car’s belt pre-tensioners and load-limiters didn’t work effectively enough.

Side-impact tests resulted in a crash test dummy that’s the size of a 10-year-old child hitting its head on interior trim, because the curtain airbag failed to provide enough cushioning.

The results in Europe highly contrast those in the US, where the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has awarded the Mustang the full five stars. Euro NCAP secretary general Michiel van Ratingen said the more basic specification of European cars was the reason for this difference.

“Ford did not expect Euro NCAP to test the Mustang and chose not to fit safety technology in Europe which is available to its American consumers and available on several other sports cars for that matter,” he said. “Such an attitude to safety should trouble Ford’s customers, whether they are buying a high-powered muscle car or a regular family car.”

Much of the safety features missing from European cars come in the form of driver assist technology, such as automatic emergency braking (AEB), which is available even on basic Ford models such as the Fiesta hatchback.

In an official response to the Euro NCAP results, a Ford spokesman said: “The Mustang is a safe car meeting, or exceeding, all applicable safety standards globally. The Mustang’s safety credentials are further demonstrated by the five-star NHTSA NCAP rating awarded in the US as well as a good Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) rating.”

Ford is launching a facelifted Mustang for 2018, which will be available to order in Europe this September. Ford confirmed that the updated model will get several safety features, including pre-collision assist - with pedestrian detection, forward collision warning and AEB – as well as lane-keeping assist. However, it has yet to confirm whether that equipment will be standard or available as part of an options pack.

Euro NCAP plans to test this 2018 model when first customer cars arrive next year. “We welcome any improvement, of course, and look forward to publishing a new rating for the updated model,” said van Ratingen. “However, more fundamental updates may be needed if the Mustang is to get a significantly better result. We therefore hope Ford takes the opportunity to invest in the changes needed now for future Mustang generations.”

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Biter 26 January 2017

Ford needs to be more devious like the Euro manufactures

They should just have loads of safety options not fitted as standard. Aka VW, Audi, Volvo etc.

Most people do not understand the test scores.

Usual European nonsense.

xxxx 26 January 2017

Test houses eh

Biter wrote:

They should just have loads of safety options not fitted as standard. Aka VW, Audi, Volvo etc.

Most people do not understand the test scores.

That's because 'Most People are to amazed' still (see Test = 0 above)

si73 25 January 2017

Not great

It's not great that the pretensioners and airbags have been found wanting, I am less concerned with available safety kit and more concerned with its actual safety which could and should be better. It is about time that ncap rated the cars crash test separately from its available passive safety systems so you get 2 results, stars for structural safety Inc airbags etc and points for extra safety kit like lane departure etc, you do realise cars lose points if the airbag warning labels on Sun visors can be removed? This should all be in a percentage score seperate to the actual crash test.
rogerhudson 25 January 2017

Autocar and another stupid car

A Ford Mustang is as much use to a British driver as a bicycle is for a fish.
Within ten years cars like this will have to be trailered to circuit for a 'track day', this applies to over half the cars Autocar writes about.
fhp111 25 January 2017

Exactly

Couldn't agree more.

Why should a British driver find any need to enjoy the intoxicating power and sound of a V8 muscle car.

I too cannot understand why us British cannot get on with our boring lives in our boring diesel hatchbacks without being bothered with such stupidity.