The Suzuki Baleno has become the first car to receive a ‘Dual Rating’ from EuroNCAP, with 3 stars being attributed to the standard version and 4 stars going to the one with the optional safety pack.
A 3 star rating is nothing to write about in today’s world, and we’ll have to take into account the fact that the Baleno got its 4 star rating only after EuroNCAP tested its optional ‘Radar Brake Support’ which includes an AEB City and AEB Inter-Urban system.
This is the first year in which EuroNCAP is allowing two different star ratings for the same vehicle. By default, a base rating will be generated for a car equipped with zero options, and then another one (if the manufacturer so chooses) for a version fitted with extra safety tech. This way, customers can understand more easily what the benefits are of having additional crash avoidance equipment on their cars.
When testing the standard model, EuroNCAP found that the only “Safety Assist” feature that could be relied on was the seatbelt reminder system – fitted as standard for all seating positions. It wasn’t until they tried a car that had the optional autonomous braking system that they were able to pass down a 4 star rating.
Speaking of which, the Baleno performed very well during autonomous braking tests, demonstrating a solid overall performance. However, it’s worth mentioning that there’s also an optional speed assistance system available for the car, though not included in the ‘Radar Brake Support’ option pack – which meant that it was not included in this assessment.
Systems such as lane assist or pedestrian detection are also not available in the Baleno.