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SA Suzuki S-Presso models fare better in crash safety test but results still leave much to be desired

When the Suzuki S-Presso was first tested by Global NCAP in 2020 it performed poorly, scoring a zero star rating for adult occupant protection and two stars for child occupant protection. After a storm of negative press, Suzuki SA stated there was no need for alarm as local S-Presso variants are fitted with an extra front airbag and front seat-belt pre-tensioners — features both excluded from the Indian-spec model used in the test.

Fast-forward to 2022 and Global NCAP has assessed the SA version of the S-Presso. It fares better than its Indian cousin scoring three stars for adult occupant protection, however child occupant protection remains unchanged at two stars. The programme found that the vehicle’s structure still demonstrated an unstable performance and that the driver’s chest showed a weak protection level — narrowly avoiding a two-star rating. 

According to Global NCAP the lack of ISOFIX anchorages, ommission of three-point seat-belts in all seating positions and the decision of Suzuki Maruti not to recommend a Child Restraint System (CRS) all explain this disappointing child occupant protection score.

“The safety performance of the S-Presso in SA has been far from satisfactory and claims of improvement are not reflected in levels of child occupant protection which remain the same as the Indian version we tested in 2020,” says secretary-General of Global NCAP Alejandro Furas. 

“There has been significant progress with vehicle safety in the Indian market with a welcome requirement for the fitment of six airbags as standard. We hope that Maruti Suzuki will not apply a double standard for the vehicles they sell in Africa compared to those sold in India.”

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Source: TimesLIVE

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