Released earlier in the year, the Kia Rio has received unanimous praise by motoring media as being a refreshed and totally rejuvenated car that fits into Kia's new design and engineering philosophy. This praise is now backed up with the maximum possible five star occupant safety protection rating.
Achieving a 92% passenger protection safety rating and 84% child occupant protection safety rating, the Rio ranks as one of the highest achieving vehicles in terms of safety. The Rio was also praised for its standard safety features, which include six airbags and Electronic Stability Control.
The other two five star EuroNCAP inductees include the Volkswagen up! and Beetle, both of which will make it to Australia in 2012.
The Volkswagen up! is a pint-sized city car that is expected to be priced from around $15,000 and go head-to-head against the Holden Barina Spark, Nissan Micra and Suzuki Swift. The up!'s five star safety rating was helped along by being the only vehicle in its class to score an Advanced Safety Award with an optional safety system called City Emergency Braking that uses laser sensors that scan ahead of the vehicle and can automatically brake ahead of impending low-speed crashes.
Volkswagen's other new five star car is the rehashed Beetle that features more masculine styling and a raft of new engine options. The Beetle was applauded by EuroNCAP judges for exceptional passenger and child occupant safety.