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International crash-testing authority Global NCAP has conducted its car-to-car crash test between two equivalent models from the US and Mexican markets – and the results are alarming.

From the States is the 2016 Nissan Versa (formerly sold here as the Almera), the most affordable Nissan sedan sold in the US.

Mexico’s 2015 Nissan Tsuru (which the company recently announced will be going out of production next May), is the most affordable Nissan sedan on sale in that market, though it dates back to 1992.

America’s Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) awarded the Versa a ‘good’ safety rating (equivalent to five stars) while the Tsuru was recently given a zero-star rating by Latin NCAP.

The test involved a 50 per cent overlap and a combined closing speed of 80mph (129km/h).

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Global NCAP says the results of the test graphically highlighted the urgent need for the Nissan Tsuru to be taken out of production.

The severe damage to the Tsuru, plus the lack of airbags, meant the driver would have had high probability of suffering life-threatening injuries, even death.

Additionally, all the main structures of the Tsuru failed in the test, fatally compromising the occupant’s survival space.

Meanwhile, the Versa may look pretty bad, but the airbags and stronger structure kept the cabin intact and the passengers safe during the impact.

David Ward, secretary general of Global NCAP, said: “Our first ever Car to Car test clearly shows the importance of minimum crash test regulations”.

“Mexico doesn’t yet apply them and the US has had them for decades. The lack of standards can result in the sale of unsafe cars like the Nissan Tsuru.”

“Across Latin America all countries should apply United Nations (UN) or equivalent safety standards to all new passenger cars, so that there is no future for zero-star cars,” he added.

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Above: Nissan Tsuru during Latin NCAP crash testing

Meanwhile, Alejandro Furas, Latin NCAP’s secretary general, slammed Nissan for not acting soon enough with regards to pulling the Tsuru from the market after receiving a zero-star crash rating three years ago.

“I believe that Nissan made this announcement as a reaction to our campaign to stop the production of Zero Star Cars in Mexico and across Latin America,” he said.

“[The] Nissan Tsuru [has] been involved in more than 4000 deaths on Mexico’s roads between 2007 and 2012.”

“Why has it taken Nissan three years since we first crash tested and gave the Tsuru a Zero Star rating to take this unsafe car out of production?” he added.

Watch the video above to see the Nissan Tsuru and Nissan Versa go head-to-head.

MORE: Nissan to end Tsuru production after earning zero-star crash rating
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MORE: USA v Mexico: Global NCAP to highlight safety concerns in developing markets




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