The Alfa MiTo, which goes on sale in the UK on 24 January 2009, has been awarded a maximum five-star Euro NCAP crash safety rating, making it one of the safest vehicles in its segment.
Alfa Romeo’s sporty new compact notched up a score of 36 points out of a maximum 37 in the Euro NCAP adult safety ratings, and a judgement of “Good” – with a score of 3.35 (finishing top of its segment and second overall) in the new tests that Euro NCAP has introduced to assess the ability of the front seats to prevent whiplash.
This major accolade yet again confirms Alfa Romeo’s commitment to all aspects relating to driver and passenger protection. The Alfa MiTo was designed and built to obtain the maximum score in passive and active safety tests, and the proof of that is evident.
Examples include sophisticated electronic systems for control of vehicle dynamic behaviour (from braking to traction), Vehicle Dynamic Control (not disengageable) that manages important functions such as the Hill Holder, traction control, assisted emergency braking, MSR to prevent the wheels locking during over-run, ‘active electronic steering’ DST (Dynamic Steering Torque), and Q2 Electronic that simulates the presence of a self-locking differential electronically.
Thousands of hours of virtual simulations have made it possible to develop the car, without the aid of prototypes, in just 16 months. The results of this intensive virtual design were then put to the test physically, with 200 tests on components and subsystems, more than 100 impact simulations on a Hyge slide, and more than 80 crash tests (frontal impact, side impact, roll-over and rear impact, taking into account the various speeds at which impacts may occur, the different types of obstacle, and the need to protect occupants with very different physical characteristics).
These statistics demonstrate Alfa Romeo’s deep-rooted commitment to making the MiTo one of the safest cars both in its segment and on the road today. The new model is state-of-the-art as far as passive safety is concerned. Protection is underwritten by the provision of seven airbags as standard (two of which are Multistage); three-point seatbelts with double pre-tensioners and load limiters; and SAHR (Self Aligning Head Restraint), a new second-generation system built into the backrests of the front seats that moves the head restraint closer to the occupants’ heads in the event of an impact to lessen the effects of whiplash. Also worthy of mention is the contribution to occupant protection made by the MiTo’s bodyshell, the bonnet, doors, and the dashboard cross member, in addition to the seats and steering column, all of which have been designed with a particular view to their behaviour in the event of an accident. Finally, standard equipment LED tail-lights offer increased brightness than conventional bulbs, for greater safety.