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Your car might be covered, but how safe are you?

14 November 2006

Media Release

Your car might be covered, but how safe are you?

State, New Zealand’s largest motor insurer, has reviewed the personal security features of popular new cars in the hope it will increase the safety of drivers.

The State Personal Security Car Ratings reveal which vehicles have the best personal safety and security features.

Vehicles are scored against 14 features, such as lights, locks and alarms, which are designed to offer motorists safety, security and peace of mind.

The review of more than 120 vehicles showed that Land Rover have the most features of any manufacturer with the Land Rover Discovery 3 and Land Rover Range Rover both scoring 12 out of a possible 14. Land Rover were the top scorer across all nine vehicle classes.

Other interesting results included:
- Luxury, medium and large vehicles generally scored highly with averages of 8(luxury) and 7 (medium, large) out of 14
- The average for the small car category was 3 out of 14
- The small/medium, people mover and commercial categories all scored an average of 4 out of 14

A higher rating shows that the vehicle had more desirable features, while a lower rating means the vehicle had fewer personal security features.

Mike Tully, National Sales and Support Manager for State Insurance, believes that the ratings may help drivers in making vehicle choices.

“Features such as interior lights and panic alerts are strong deterrents of potential incidents and can help to keep motorists safe,” says Mr Tully.

Many of the top scoring vehicles feature remote activated headlights, which allow motorists to illuminate a darkened area while walking to their vehicle. Both Land Rover models feature a panic button on the keyless entry remote which when pressed, immediately sounds the vehicle’s horn.

“Many of these features are simple modifications that give significant safety and security improvements,” says Mr Tully.

He says it’s just as important to ensure your safety and security when in your car as it is to ensure you lock the house before leaving.

The full results of State’s personal security car ratings are available at

Best overall performers:

Vehicle Category Overall score
(out of a possible 14 points)
Land Rover Discovery 3 4WD 12
Land Rover Range Rover 4WD 12
Holden Caprice sedan Luxury 11
Holden Commodore sedan Large 10
Peugeot 407 HD1 sedan Small/medium 10

Worst overall performers:

Vehicle Category Overall score
(out of a possible 14 points)
Holden Barina 5 door hatch Small 1
Kia Rio Cvvt 5 door hatch Small 1
Holden Viva 5 door hatch Small/Medium 1
Jeep Wrangler Sport 4x4 4WD 1
Nissan Patrol ST 4.2 4WD 1
Mazda MX5 Roadster Sport 1
Toyota Hilux SR 4.0L V6 Commercial 1

Best and worst performers by category:

Vehicle Overall score
(out of a possible 14 points)
Volkswagen Polo GTi 3 door hatch 7
Holden Barina 5 door hatch 1
Kia Rio Cvvt 5 door hatch 1
Audi A3 3.2 V6 5 door hatch 9
Citroen C4 VTS Coupe 9
Renault Megane Dynamic 2.0L 5 door hatch 9
Holden Viva 5 door hatch 1
Peugeot 407 HD1 sedan 10
Mazda 6 MPS sedan 5
Holden Commodore Omega sedan 10
Nissan Maxima sedan 4
Land Rover Discovery 3 12
Land Rover Range Rover Sport 12
Jeep Wrangler Sport 4 x 4 1
Nissan Patrol ST 4.2 1
Holden Caprice sedan 11
Alpha Romeo 159 JTDm sedan 5
BMW 645 Ci coupe 10
BMW 645 Ci cabriolet 10
Mercedes Benz CLK 500 Elegance cabriolet 9
Audi S4 4.2 cabriolet 9
Audi S4 4.2 sedan 9
Mazda MX5 Roadster and hard top Roadster 1
Holden Crewman Cross X6 8
Holden Ute 8
Toyota Hilux SR 4.0L V6 1
People Mover
Volkswagen Caravelle Highline Tdi van 7
Mazda MPV 5 door wagon 3

State Insurance's Personal Car Security Ratings are based on the following features:
• interior light can be activated by the remote when the doors are unlocked to let you see if anyone is inside;
• interior light comes on when the ignition is switched off to illuminate the cabin to allow the driver to quickly gather belongings before exiting the car;
• lights flash to illuminate the area outside of your car when you press the remote to see if anyone is lurking;
• headlights on with remote allows you to light up the path to your car at night;
• headlight timer after you have left your car, the headlights light your way out of a dark car park and switch off after a set time;
• panic alert on the remote to sound the car's horn;
• two-stage unlocking allows you to unlock the driver's door to prevent someone from entering the car from the other side;
• deadlocking locks your car so it cannot be opened from the inside;
• drive away door locking locks the doors after you drive off and unlocks when you switch the engine off;
• power window operation after the ignition is off allows you to close the electronic windows;
• laminated side glass provides added protection against glass breakage;
• in-car assistance provides you with emergency assistance without having to leave the car;
• in-car navigation provides you with an electronic road map with directions to where you are travelling; and
• audible warning if the car isn't locked indicates if you have not closed the doors properly.


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