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by Tim Beissmann

The Toyota Camry and the Subaru Impreza and XV have earned the maximum five-star safety rating from independent crash tester ANCAP (the Australasian New Car Assessment Program).

The new Camry became the second-highest ranked medium-sized car according to ANCAP’s data, earning an impressive 36.27 points out of 37. All models of the 2012 Toyota Camry come standard with seven airbags (dual front, side, curtains, and driver’s knee), electronic stability control (ESC), electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD), anti-lock brakes (ABS), and seatbelt reminders for all passengers.

The Subaru Impreza and XV (effectively a high-riding version of the Impreza) both scored 35.33 points out of 37. Like the Camry, the Impreza/XV are also equipped with seven airbags, ESC, EBD, ABS, and five seatbelt reminders.

The Impreza/XV also achieved an “acceptable” rating for pedestrian protection. The front bumper scored maximum points for its protection of pedestrians’ legs, but the front edge of the bonnet scored zero points as it was rated poor in all areas of testing.

ANCAP has not yet published pedestrian protection results for the Camry.

ANCAP chair Lauchlan McIntosh said the standard five-star safety rating of all Subaru vehicles in Australia was pleasing, but insisted manufacturers now needed to focus on improving their pedestrian protection rankings.

“It is encouraging that manufacturers like Subaru are achieving five-star performance for all the vehicles they produce for Australia,” McIntosh said.

“Both Subaru and Toyota now need to work on getting the top ratings for pedestrian protection. Many manufacturers are now scoring in the top category for occupant protection but more attention must be paid to protecting pedestrians as well.”