Crash test shock prompts Nissan to withdraw model from sale

Car-to-car crash test sees Mexican Nissan Tsuru earn zero stars, prompting firm to drop it from line-up

Nissan has been forced to withdraw a new car from sale after it earned a shocking zero-star safety rating. The Nissan Tsuru is built for the Mexican market, and is a popular taxi in the country. But in test conditions designed to show the variations in vehicle safety between different countries, the Tsuru proved to be well below the standards of its US equivalent.

The test was conducted by the Global New Car Assessment Program (NCAP), and the Tsuru was assessed in a 50 per cent overlap collision with the US market Nissan Versa, which is similar to the UK's Nissan Pulsar. Both cars were travelling at 40mph, but the difference in damage between the two was stark.

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With a full set of airbags and a deformable crash structure, the Versa's impact protection means occupants would escape with cuts and bruises. But the Tsuru has no airbags, while the car's A-pillar deformed so badly that it entered the passenger compartment, which would cause fatal injuries to the driver.

The test was the latest conducted by global NCAP as part of its #NoZeroStarCars campaign, which is aiming to remove poorly performing new cars from sale, and raise safety standards in new car markets across the globe.

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The Tsuru can trace its roots to the US market Nissan Sentra from the 1990s, but the result of this test has prompted Nissan to drop the car from its range with immediate effect. NCAP reported that the Tsuru was involved in over 4,000 fatal accidents in Mexico from 2007-2012, and its poor safety credentials have clearly contributed to this statistic.

What do you think about the differences in car crash safety standards around the world? Let us know in the comments...

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