The Opel Ampera-e just surprised us by not achieving five stars in the Euro NCAP safety rating. The poor rating is the result of the lack of the “Seat Belt Reminder” feature in the rear seats, as the Secretary General at Euro NCAP, Michiel van Ratingen explains:
“We know how effective these reminders are at promoting seatbelt use, so this is clearly a big step backwards on Opel’s part”.
This safety feature might seem unimportant at first, but we shouldn’t forget that the rear seats are often used by children and they need to be regularly reminded to buckle up before it becomes a habit.
Nevertheless, the Opel Ampera-e performed well in most of the tests, especially in the AEB (Autonomous Emergency Braking) ones, as you can see in the video below.
For me the best part of the Euro NCAP videos is always at the end, when they test the AEB systems. Modern cars aren’t only about trying to achieve zero emissions, but also about zero fatalities.
It’s the lack of accident prevention features the reason why I feel that one of my favorites electric cars – the Renault Zoe – is outdated, even now with the bigger battery capacity. It’s time to catch up with most of the other electric cars that already have AEB systems. Fortunately, the next generation Renault Clio will arrive next year and soon after, a facelifted Zoe is almost certain to follow.
If the super cheap new generation Kia Picanto can have AEB as a 450 € option in Portugal, it doesn’t make sense that this safety feature is not standard in much more expensive electric cars.
What do you think? Are accident prevention features important to you? Do you want your next car to have it?