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25 May 2022

Revealed: the new electric cars that aced Euro NCAP crash tests

The new Kia EV6 and Volvo C40 Recharge electric cars outperform the conventionally powered Vauxhall Astra and Peugeot 308 in Euro NCAP crash tests
Volvo C40 Recharge crash test

The new Kia EV6 and Volvo C40 Recharge electric cars are two of the safest cars on the road today, according to independent crash tests. We reveal the latest results from safety body Euro NCAP for these cars and more.

The Kia EV6 and Volvo C40 Recharge received a perfect five stars out of five in the latest Euro NCAP crash tests, outperforming the latest generations of the conventionally-powered Vauxhall Astra and Peugeot 308, both of which score a still decent four stars out of five.

Meanwhile the Mercedes-Benz C-Class (available as an estate or saloon) joins the Kia and Volvo in achieving five stars out of five. The Euro NCAP ratings for the C-Class, Astra and 308 also apply to their plug-in hybrid versions.

Read on to find out more about the latest crash tests and how each car performed.

Best electric cars for 2022 – our comprehensive lab and road tests ensure you get a safe, reliable and efficient car

Kia EV6 (£41,695) – 5 stars

Kia now has an impressive line-up of electric cars, with the Kia EV6 following the Kia Soul EV and Kia e-Niro – we recently revealed the latter as the most reliable small SUV across all fuel types.

The Kia EV6 performed superbly in Euro NCAP’s crash tests, sweeping through with a near-perfect 90% score for protecting adults in the car – closely followed by scores of 86% and 87% for protecting children and safety assistance technology respectively.

It didn’t score quite as well for protecting vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists (64%), but that’s still a good result.

It might be safe, but is this the perfect electric hatchback for your family? Find out in our Kia EV6 review.

Volvo C40 Recharge (£44,017) – 5 stars

The C40 Recharge electric car is a coupe version of Volvo's XC40 Recharge, and it's off to a flying start as far as safety is concerned.

For safety assistance technology, the C40 Recharge beats the other cars tested alongside it with a score of 89%. In fact, it narrowly edges the Kia EV6 in each main area, scoring 92% for protecting adults in the car and 89% for children. For protecting vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists, it scored a decent 70%.

Could this be your ideal small SUV? Our experts deliver the definitive verdict in our full Volvo C40 Recharge review.

Mercedes-Benz C-Class (£39,890) – 5 stars

The new Mercedes-Benz C-Class excels in Euro NCAP tests in all areas. Unlike the fully electric Kia EV6 and Volvo C40 Recharge, the C-Class is a mild hybrid  find out more about hybrids in our guide to the best hybrid cars for 2022.

The C-Class is fitted with an active bonnet, which means sensors in the bumper detect when a pedestrian has been hit and lifts the bonnet to avoid impact with harder car structures.

This helps the Mercedes achieve a high 80% for protecting vulnerable road users, to match strong scores of 93% and 89% for its adult and child protection respectively, and 82% for its safety assistance technology.

We’ve reviewed the estate version of this car – see how it fared in our full Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate review.

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Peugeot 308 (£33,035) – 4 stars

Although it can't match the five-star performance of the Kia, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo cars above, the Peugeot 308 scored well for protecting adults (76%) and children (84%). For its safety assistance technology it scored 65%, and 68% for protecting vulnerable road users.

The 308 offers plenty of crash avoidance technology, but Euro NCAP noted that its autonomous emergency braking (AEB) system only performed ‘marginally’ in avoiding impacts with other vehicles. AEB is designed to automatically apply the brakes to reduce the impact when the car detects a collision is imminent.

We haven’t reviewed the new Peugeot 308 just yet, but you can see how the previous generation fared in our Peugeot 308 (2014-2022) review.

Vauxhall Astra (£23,805) – 4 stars

The Vauxhall Astra and Peugeot 308 share the same basic underpinnings, so it’s no surprise they also share the same not-quite-perfect score of four stars out of five – although it’s a commendable performance nevertheless.

In two crash tests where the Astra was crashed into a full-width barrier and a barrier off to one side, Euro NCAP found there was only ‘marginal’ protection for the chest for average-sized male and small female drivers. Euro NCAP also noted that neither the Astra or Peugeot 308 has a centre airbag to protect people sliding across the car in the event of an impact from the opposite side.

Overall, the Astra scored 80% for protecting adults and 82% for children, 66% for its safety assistance technology and a good 67% for protecting vulnerable road users.

Tempted by the new Astra? Our professionals have given it a spin – see their first impressions in our First Look Vauxhall Astra (2022-) review.

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