WATCH | SA-built Nissan NP300 fails crash test against Euro-spec NP300

The Global NCAP crashing two Nissan Hardbody bakkies into each other. Image: AA South Africa
The Global NCAP crashing two Nissan Hardbody bakkies into each other. Image: AA South Africa

The Nissan NP300 Hardbody is one of the best-selling vehicles on the African continent. Known for its rugged nature and go-anywhere capabilities, the Hardbody has become a mainstay on our roads.

Even here in South Africa, the NP300 is a strong seller – counting among the ten best-selling bakkies in the country, every month.

In 2019, news broke on a 2018 Hardbody’s inability to fully protect its occupants in the event of an accident. Despite the harrowing results of that test, it did little to deter the bakkie’s sales success both in South Africa and across the greater African continent.

Not satisfied with the then-results, the Global NCAP pitted a new 2019 Nissan NP300 Hardbody against a second-hand 2015 Navara Hardbody, European-spec, and had the two vehicles drive into each other at 56km/h.

READ | Why these readers would still buy a Nissan NP300 even though its has a zero-safety rating

If you were in the market to purchase a NP300 Harbody, would the result of the crash test below in the video influence your decision? Email us.

Wheels24 reached out to the automaker about the video.

Nissan South Africa says: "Nissan’s number one priority is the safety of its customers. We are committed to the highest safety standards in every single market where we operate, without exception. The locally produced NP300 Hardbody meets all safety regulations within Africa, where it has built a strong reputation over many years for reliability and customer satisfaction.

"Nissan continues to  introduce advanced safety technologies and features into our global product range, including Africa, and we actively encourage and support  advancements in safety regulations and requirements for the benefit of our customers."

Fatal injuries

Global NCAP noted: "The Nissan NP300 was previously tested by Global NCAP in 2018 as part of the #SaferCarsForAfrica campaign and received a zero star safety rating. The vehicle structure collapsed and was found to be unstable during the test. The high forces placed on the crash test driver dummy pose a significant risk of fatal injury. The NP300’s bodyshell was so unstable that the airbags were ineffective.

"The (Euro-spec) Nissan Navara NP300 was previously tested by Euro NCAP in 2015 and achieved a four star adult occupant rating."

See the video below:

Commenting on the matter

David Ward, CEO and president of Global NCAP said: “This is a very dramatic car to car crash test which uniquely illustrates the double standard in vehicle safety performance between models sold in Europe and those sold in Africa. 

"The difference in crashworthiness is extraordinary. The new Nissan Hardbody performs significantly worse than the second-hand Nissan Navara, to the extent that the driver in the new African Nissan would likely have died from their injuries but the driver from the second-hand European Nissan would have walked away."

WATCH: NP300 bakkie drops to bottom in latest SA crash tests - Nissan responds

Willem Groenewald, CEO of the AA, echoes Ward's sentiments, adding: “What this car-to-car crash also demonstrates is a complete disdain for African vehicle consumers and their safety at the expense of profit. It also again highlights the need for stricter regulation of standards and tougher controls in terms of allowing these inferior vehicles on to African roads.”

“On a final note, we endorse David’s sentiments that higher safety-rated second-hand vehicles are a better option than lower-rated new vehicles, especially in light of these poor results which clearly show the devastating impact on families and society of inferior models which are sold in Africa.”

crash results

Compiled by: Charlen Raymond

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