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It was only a month ago I had a laugh about the Safety Rating of the Holden Barina and encouraged no one to even consider it as a car (given that it is based on the miserable Daewoo Kalos). Now it seems like Holden has had enough beating from the public about this issue and are looking at other options for their Korean made Barina.

I am concerned by the publicity. First of all, I was not surprised at the Australian NCAP results as the Euro NCAP results were very similar in Europe a couple of months earlier. But it was a little surprising to our technical community. We had a better internal result. Both tests are exactly precise yet there’s variation in the results. Let me say, though, I am very confident of the safety of the Barina. That’s one test.

The car is a five-star over in North America, which is a different test. These tests measure chest ‘G’, they measure head-impact criteria and physical intrusion … and these are the kind of tests that end up in the consumer’s scorebooks, so to speak. I’m very confident where that vehicle is from a safety standpoint. It is a little misleading when you compare it to the old Barina, which was tested under a different test procedure, by the way. So there are a lot of variables here.

I’m not trying to be defensive because the result is what it is. We have been working with the Australian NCAP and our engineers … to see if there is anything else we want to do.

Mr Mooney Chairman and Managing Director of GM Holden

Don’t be fooled by his comments about how the old Holden Barina was under a different test. Sure it was different, but not that different and if they put the old Barina under the current test, there is no question that it would give a better result! But Mr Mooney isn’t convinced. So confident in the Barina’s safety he has put his own and his daughter’s life at risk:

I drive the car, I have my daughter drive the car and there is no problem.

Well Mr Mooney, for a start, I don’t believe you drive a Barina to work everyday – and I love the way he says “I have my daughter drive the car” – is it by force Mr Mooney? Secondly it seems like not many other people are willing to put their children’s life at risk. The sales of the New Barina are not only lower than average (by around 400 cars this month) but they are also lower than the old European made Barina which sold until last year!

So can you tell the difference between the Daewoo Kalos and the Holden Barina? Except for the badge? (click on the pictures to see a larger version).

 Daewoo Kalso 2006




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