The Dacia Spring electric hatchback based on the Renault Kwid received a measly one-star safety rating from the Euro NCAP. Along with many other vehicles that were tested by the European New Car Assessment Programme, another Renault product, the Zoe EV was also tested. The micro hatch received an even worse rating of zero stars. Making it the third-ever vehicle to do so.
Back in 2016, Renault Kwid was also awarded the same one-star rating from the Euro NCAP. The Dacia Spring EV which is grounded upon the same model Kwid was also deemed extremely unsafe and “its performance in crash tests is downright problematic”, said the programme.
The variant ran during the test was the E2 Comfort Plus of the Dacia Spring electric, which is powered by a 33 kW (44.25 BHP) motor and which weighs in at 970kg. Safety features like dual front and side airbags, seat belt reminder, load limiter, and pretensioner come as standard on the vehicle. Additionally, the Spring electric also gets ISOFIX mounts in the back, along with the AEB car-to-car and speed assistance, in Europe.
The front impact score for the Dacia EV was 6.1 out of the 16 available, along with a lateral impact score of 10.6 out of 16 points. Meanwhile, the rear impact rating was 2.8 from the total of 4, also the EV received -0.5 from a total of 2 points for rescue and extraction. Giving Dacia Spring Electric a total score of just 18.9 points, which comes out to be a mere 49 percent of the total points in the Adult Occupant Protection (AOP) tests. The rear-seat occupant’s safety rating was slightly better and resulted in a 56 percent child occupant rating.
Despite the passenger compartment’s stability in the frontal offset test, the figures for the damages from the legs of the dummies were found out to be very high. An additional high risk of injury to passengers was also observed due to the structures in the dashboard.
The poor head protection to rear occupants during the full-width barrier test also exposed the further inadequacies of the safety in the Spring electric hatchback. In the same test, the front occupant dummy’s also displayed poor protection to the chest and pelvic region. The story remains the same in the far side impact test.
In the grand scheme of things, the Dacia Spring scored 17.5 out of 24 points for crash test performance. It also received 4 out of 13 points for safety features on offer and 6 out of 12 points for CRS installation check. The EV received 21.3 points which equate to a 39 percent score in the pedestrian safety test. It also scored a total of 5.2 points or 32 percent in the safety assist test.
Matthew Avery, Euro NCAP board member said, “This is anything but a safe family car, despite being marketed as a good option for families,” he added, “Dacia argues that drivers don’t need collision-avoidance technology. We would argue that’s not right, because nobody wants to have a crash; nobody wants to feel what it’s like to be smacked in the face by an airbag, really. So active safety is just as important as passive safety.”
To which the manufacturer replied, “[The] Spring is a safe new A-segment car. It is homologated, complies with European safety regulations and goes even beyond.” they also said, “[The] Spring proposes a full list of safety features providing better protection than most of the cars on the roads of Europe today (including those of upper segments). However, the contradiction remains between the lightweight/small size of the car (which makes them more efficient and more accessible) and the resistance in terms of crash; especially with Euro NCAP protocols getting more and more stringent every two years, in particular for small city cars.”