Words by Ganesh Murthy
The recently unveiled SUV from JLR’s stables – the Range Rover Velar is one of the safest SUVs money can buy, with its five-star rating by Euro NCAP. The Velar features a comprehensive suite of safety systems like reverse traffic detection, matrix laser LED headlights, lane keep assist, driver condition monitor, intelligent speed limiter, traffic sign recognition, seat belt reminders for all passengers and autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection. The advanced technology can detect a collision risk with cars or pedestrians in the road ahead and automatically apply the brakes. The system was awarded a maximum six marks in the pedestrian detection tests by Euro NCAP’s testers. The Velar scored 93% for adult occupant protection, 85% for child occupant protection and 74% for pedestrian protection. It secured an overall Euro NCAP rating of 84% in the tests.
However a lot of this equipment will not make it to India. Features like the traffic sign recognition, reverse traffic detection, lane change assist and the other autonomous features will likely be given a skip. Nevertheless, the India-spec Velar will come equipped with six airbags, emergency brake assist (that boosts brake pressure during emergency braking), ISOFIX child seat mounts, ABS, DSC, EBD, traction control, cornering brake control and roll stability control. The version that makes it here will also have the same structural integrity of the Europe spec car and should deal with collisions well.
Michiel van Ratingen, Secretary General of Euro NCAP, said, “Twenty years on from when Euro NCAP started, it’s encouraging to see a competitive safety environment still working. All of the SUVs we have tested in the last couple of years have had a five-star rating and the Velar is towards the top of the table in all areas of assessment. That’s great news for consumers, who are able to buy the kind of cars they like with the confidence that they offer high levels of protection.”
Fifteen popular SUVs, large and small, have already been tested by Euro NCAP since the start of 2016. These include sport utility vehicles by established players, such as the Jeep Compass and the Audi Q5, as well as new entrants like the Seat Ateca, Škoda Kodiaq and the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, all of which got 5 star ratings. The Range Rover Velar joins the category as one of the safest SUVs in the fast growing SUV segment.
Jeremy Hicks, Managing Director, Jaguar Land Rover UK, said: “For Velar customers, only the best is good enough and we are delighted the fourth Range Rover has been awarded five-star safety credentials. This, combined with excellent residual values and stunning design really set Velar out as a car that appeals to the heart and the head.”