children safety

Popular South African car proves to pose danger for children. PHOTO: Screenshot/Automobile Association

Not so safe after all? Popular SA car ‘may pose danger’ to children safety

One of South Africa’s popular cars is proven to pose a danger to children due to poor child protection measures.

children safety

Popular South African car proves to pose danger for children. PHOTO: Screenshot/Automobile Association

Popular car Suzuki S-Presso, has scored low on adult safety but even lower for child protection, disproving claims that it had better safety performance in South Africa.

The small hatchback was put to the test by the Global NCAP and the Automobile Association (AA) in the latest results of the #SaferCarsForAfrica campaign on Wednesday.

The test comes after reports that the version sold in South Africa was far safer than the model tested for the Indian Market in 2020. Back then, it scored a zero-star rating for adult occupation and two stars for child safety.

“The S-Presso in South Africa is fitted with two airbags as standard. During the assessment, the S-Presso structure demonstrated an unstable performance and the driver’s chest showed a weak protection level, marginally avoiding a two-star rating,” AA spokesperson Layton Beard said.

Child safety
The popular Suzuki S-Presso scored two stars for child protection, making it unsafe for children. PHOTO: Automobile Association

ALSO READ: Six people killed in Greyhound bus collision


The car scored low on the protection of children as it lacked the ISOFIX anchorages for car seats. The miniature car also did not have a three-point belt in all seats.

“The decision of Suzuki Maruti not to recommend a Child Restraint System (CRS) explains this poor child occupant protection score.”

Layton Beard

The Global NCAP expressed dissatisfaction by the failure of improving the levels of child protection as it remains at two stars, like the Indian version tested in 2020, secretary general Alejandro Furas said.

“There has been significant progress with vehicle safety in the Indian market with a welcome requirement the fitment of six airbags as standard. We hope that Maruti Suzuki will not apply a double standard for the vehicles they sell in Africa compared to those sold in India,” Furas said.


Three other cars scored lower than the S-Presso on child protection. The GWM Steed 5, Suzuki Ignis and the Honda Amaze all scored one-star for child safety.

ALSO READ: Five children injured in Benoni accident

AA CEO Willem Groenewald emphasised the importance of the safety of motorists in South Africa and improving child protection in vehicles.

“While the adult occupancy result for the S-Presso is encouraging there is room for improvement, especially in relation to the child protection rating. The safety of motorists in South Africa is critical and we welcome the visible efforts by manufacturers in this regard and urge them to continue investing in this important facet of their production,” Groenewald said.