Active Safety Assessment by Consumer Organizations - Euro NCAP Approach 2011-36-0024
Active safety systems such as Electronic Stability Control (ESC) have been clearly demonstrated to increase vehicle safety in critical dynamic maneuvers. With such a great potential for reducing road accidents, the ESC system is being more widely fitted all over the world. As a result and in parallel with regulation initiatives, consumer organizations are expanding their assessment capabilities from passive towards active safety.
Since 2008, ESC fitment promotion has been the first step for worldwide consumer organizations such as ANCAP (Australia), NASVA (Japan) and Euro NCAP (Europe). However, a major step has now been taken by Euro NCAP with the inclusion of the first active safety test in the overall Euro NCAP safety assessment programme.
As of 2011, Euro NCAP performs the so called “Dwell sine” test on all cars that meet the ESC fitment requirement. This test procedure is based on the European ESC homologation test ECE R13H and reproduces a severe obstacle avoidance manoeuvre where ESC efficiency is checked in terms of yaw stability and lateral response. With the current test procedure, a PASS/FAIL result is obtained considering the applicable thresholds.
Taking the experience from the dynamic tests of 2011 and onwards, Euro NCAP and its members are continuing to work on possible refinements to the ESC test and assessment methods in order to evolve from a PASS/FAIL to a quantifiable and therefore rateable result for the “Dwell sine” manoeuvre. Additionally, further accident scenarios will be considered for developing new test protocols. In terms of additional active safety systems, Euro NCAP is also considering systems such as AEB (Autonomous Emergency Braking) that might be included in the overall assessment programme over the next few years.