18 Jun 2019

Suzuki defends the Swift after report proposed banning cars with poor safety ratings

12:37 pm on 18 June 2019

Suzuki are defending the quality of their popular Swift model, saying New Zealand-new vehicles have high safety ratings.

BELGRADE,SERBIA-MARCH 27,2018: Suzuki Swift 1.0 Elegance 2WD 6AT at DDOR BG Car Show 06

Suzuki are defending the quality of their popular Swift model. Photo: 123RF

The government is set to consider banning cars with a one or two star safety rating from being imported.

The Suzuki Swift is the second most popular used car, and models built before 2013 could be banned from being imported.

Suzuki New Zealand's Gary Collins says no Swift model imported as new has an ANCAP rating of less than four stars.

The Used Car ratings give a 2011 to 2016 model Swift a one star rating.

Mr Collins says the Used Car ratings are more subjective and less rigourous, compared to the internationally recognised ANCAP system.

He defended the 2011 Suzuki Swift, which could be banned, saying it had the highest possible safety rating when it was launched.

Used car ratings use real life crash data, while the ANCAP rating uses crash testing in a lab.

The proposal to ban some used car models from being imported into New Zealand has been welcomed by the Motor Industry Association, which says Japan's scraps are being sent here for waste disposal.

A report obtained by RNZ showed the government will consider preventing cars that have a poor safety rating from entering the vehicle fleet.

They will also look into accelerating the removal of unsafe cars from the current fleet.

Of the five most popular used cars imported into the country last year, three could be banned under the proposal.

Pre-2016 Suzuki Swifts, the nation's second most popular used car, has a safety rating of one or two stars and would no longer be imported.

Toyota Corollas built prior to 2008, and any Mazda Demio - the fourth and fifth most popular used cars respectively - would also be banned from being imported.

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