How Safe is Your Car?

Learn about how to work out your car’s safety and the features you should look for in Savvy’s comprehensive guide.

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, updated on August 10th, 2023       

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Ensuring the safety of your car is paramount for both you and your passengers. In the ever-evolving automotive technology landscape, modern cars come equipped with a variety of safety features designed to protect occupants and prevent accidents.

In Australia, safety standards are stringent, so understanding how safe your car is can greatly influence your driving experience and overall peace of mind on the road. Find out more about the safety of Australian cars and how it’s measured in Savvy’s handy guide.

How do I find out how safe my car is in Australia?

In Australia, determining how safe your car is can be easily done through the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP), the leading authority in vehicle safety assessment. ANCAP provides a comprehensive rating system that helps consumers gauge the safety level of their vehicles. Here's how you can find out how safe your car is:

  • Visit the ANCAP website: the ANCAP website is a valuable resource for car safety information. Go to their official website at
  • Search for your car: use the site to find safety ratings for the specific model you’re looking for. You can search by the make and model of your vehicle.
  • Check the safety rating: once you find your car model, ANCAP will display its safety rating. The rating is given in the form of stars, with a higher star rating indicating a safer car. This will also display the year your car’s model was last tested.
  • Explore detailed reports: ANCAP provides detailed reports for each car model, outlining the results of various safety tests. These reports provide insights into crash test results, safety assist technologies and more.
  • Consider the year: keep in mind that safety standards and technologies improve over time. If your car is an older or used model, its safety features might not be as advanced as newer vehicles, while models released in the years since it was last tested may come with a different level of safety.
  • Compare with other models: if you're considering purchasing a new car, you can use ANCAP's website to compare the safety ratings of different models. This can help you make an informed decision about which car to choose.

By using the ANCAP website, you can access reliable and up-to-date information about the safety of your car. It's important to prioritise safety when driving, and ANCAP's resources can help you make informed decisions to provide greater peace of mind to you and your passengers on the road. There are also other online resources you may be able to use to determine the safety of your vehicle.

What safety features should I look for when determining how safe my car is?

Some of the major safety features to keep an eye on when assessing your car’s overall safety, or comparing cars before you buy, include:

  • Airbags: front, side and rear airbags provide protection in the event of a collision, cushioning occupants and reducing the risk of injury.
  • Antilock Braking System (ABS): ABS prevents wheels from locking during hard braking, allowing the driver to steer while braking and reducing the risk of skidding.
  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC): ESC helps maintain control during skids or loss of control by adjusting engine power and applying individual brakes.
  • Forward Collision Warning: this system alerts the driver if they're approaching a vehicle or obstacle too quickly, giving them time to react.
  • Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB): AEB can automatically apply the brakes if a collision is imminent, reducing the severity of a crash or avoiding it altogether.
  • Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Lane Keeping Assist (LKA): LDW alerts the driver if the vehicle drifts out of its lane, while LKA can gently steer the car back into the lane.
  • Adaptive Cruise Control: this maintains a safe following distance from the vehicle ahead by automatically adjusting the car's speed.
  • Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM): BSM alerts the driver if there's a vehicle in their blind spot, helping prevent lane-change collisions.
  • Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA): RCTA warns the driver if a vehicle is approaching from either side when reversing, making busy carparks easier to navigate627.
  • Reverse camera: a rearview camera displays the area behind the vehicle when reversing, assisting with parking and avoiding obstacles.
  • Child safety features: child locks for doors and windows, as well as ISOFIX anchor points for child seats, help ensure the safety of young passengers.

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