Safety organisation Euro NCAP has put the Fiat 500, Kia cee'd, Peugeot 308 and Renault Twingo through its crash test programme, with generally satisfactory results.
The Peugeot achieved the highest marks, gaining five stars for adult occupant protection, four for child occupant protection and three (out of four) for pedestrian protection. The criticisms expressed in terms of child protection were based on a lack of information for the driver, rather than the actual safety of a child during an impact.
That also applied to the Kia, which matched the Peugeot's five and four stars for adult and child protection. The cee'd was less impressive when it came to pedestrian protection, gaining only two stars in that section. However, Euro NCAP made a point of congratulating Kia for its efforts with the cee'd, having previously been very critical of the company's products.
An impressive five-star adult occupant protection score for the little Fiat 500 led Euro NCAP to comment that "Fiat has not compromised safety, even when compromising the car's size". There were issues elsewhere, though, and the 500 managed just three stars for child and two for pedestrian protection.
The 500 did, however, perform better than the Renault Twingo - the only car here not to score five stars. The structure of the car remained stable during impact, but structures in the passenger compartment created potential injuries to the legs of the front occupants. The front bumper did well in minimising damage to pedestrians, but the bonnet dragged the Twingo's rating in this section down to two stars.
The Twingo was not given any mark for child occupant protection because Renault's child seats could not be fitted into the rear when the front seats were in their middle position.