Since its creation in 1996, Euroncap evaluated more than 80 cars, ranging from small and city cars, to larger vehicles such as executive cars and people carriers (MPVs). The testing protocol comprises 3 types of tests: a frontal offset test against a deformable barrier, a 90° lateral impact with a moving deformable barrier , and -since March 2000- a pole side impact. In addition a set of subsystem tests with impactors on the bonnet and the front face of the car are conducted to assess the pedestrian protection.
The aim of this paper is to review the testing and assessment protocols and to compare them with those used in other NCAP systems in the USA, Australia, Japan and Europe. In particular, important Euroncap issues such as the stiffness of heavier vehicles that could be increased in the future, and the nature and weight of the modifiers are discussed. Ways to improve the system are suggested in relation with real world accident data. Improvements are suggested in the areas of knee assessment, and chest assessment in frontal impact. For side impact issues such as the type of barrier and the dummy back plate load are dealt with.