Australian Government to Lead the Way on Safer Vehicles

02 May 2011

The Government is today setting an example for the Australian community by strengthening its fleet purchasing guidelines to ensure new vehicles have high safety ratings.
Minister for Finance and Deregulation Penny Wong and Parliamentary Secretary for Infrastructure and Transport Catherine King said the Government was determined to ensure high ANCAP safety ratings were applied in its fleet vehicle purchases.
ANCAP, the Australasian New Car Assessment Program, publishes vehicle crash test results and awards star ratings indicating a vehicles level of safety in an accident. The highest rating is five.
Changes to the Governments fleet will mean:
  • The fleet purchasing guidelines are amended immediately so that new passenger vehicles have a minimum four star ANCAP rating;
  • From 1 July 2011, the fleet purchasing guidelines will require all new passenger vehicles have a five star ANCAP rating; and
  • Purchase of minimum four star light commercial vehicles will also need to be considered wherever practical and will be a requirement from 1 July 2012 subject to operational requirements.
The Government is committed to leadership in vehicle safety, while at the same time setting a standard other fleet operators will be encouraged to follow.
"As the Government, we have a role to play in leading the way on important issues like vehicle safety, and this initiative is another example of how the Governments good procurement policy can promote change," Senator Wong said.
We hope that by taking this step we will make Australians more safety aware when buying a new or used vehicle for their family or business.
Ms King said the Governments support of ANCAP and the new requirements in its fleet purchasing policy complemented the Governments existing role in regulating vehicle safety for the community.
We want to encourage other fleet operators and individuals to make safety a key consideration in their vehicle purchasing decision making, Ms King said.
Our aim in regulating vehicle safety and in supporting and promoting consumer awareness through ANCAP is to keep pushing the safety bar higher."
The new arrangements will also mean safer vehicles are sold into the community at the end of their fleet service.
The Australian Government joined ANCAP as a member in May 2010 and is providing ANCAP with $5 million in the period 2009-10 to 2013-14, aimed at increasing ANCAPs crash test program.