At Co-op Insurance, our purpose is to champion a better kind of insurance, providing peace of mind for our members and their communities. To do this we want to support our communities in becoming safer, more connected and resilient.

We all know how important road safety is to our communities and that it affects how safe families feel getting around their neighbourhoods. We want to show our commitment to campaigning for safer communities throughout the UK. That’s why we‘ve partnered with Thatcham Research to champion the road safety cause by creating the ‘Co-op Safe used car 2016’ award.

We’ve selected The Volvo V40(with safety pack) 2012 as our ‘Co-op Safe used car 2016’ followed by the Volkswagen Golf and then the Nissan Qashqai.

Our safety award is based on analysis of used family cars by Matthew Avery, Director of Insurance Research at Thatcham Research.  The criteria used to rate the cars was that  they all needed to have a five-star EURO NCAP rating and be available to buy for £15,000 or less.  We then looked at

  • Crash worthiness that included ratings for adult, child and pedestrian protection
  • The availability of Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB)


If you have £15,000 to spend, there is a good choice of cars to choose from.  Car safety has improved significantly over the past few years, with life-saving technology, now available on many used family cars.

The cars shortlisted were:

  • Volvo V40 (with safety pack) 2012
  • Volkswagen Golf 2012
  • Nissan Qashqai 2014
  • Peugeot 308 2013
  • Vauxhall Astra 2015
  • Volvo V40 2012
  • Mazda 3 2013
  • Mercedes A Class 2012
  • Honda Civic 2012
  • Mazda CX-5 2012

See how your car rates for safety at Euro NCAP 

The Volvo V40

When many people think of Volvo, the first thing that comes to mind is safety. A market leader in secure, but no less exciting vehicles, Volvo is the name of choice for many motorists. And now, the brand is about to go one better, with a car as reasonably priced as it is safe: the Volvo V40 (with safety pack).

Incorporating an impressive number of safety features as standard, the V40 is fully deserving of its 5-star Euro NCAP rating. The car offers superb protection for drivers, passengers and children in the case of a crash. Where the V40 really comes into its own is with collision avoidance technology.


Did you know that the V40 was actually one of the first cars to incorporate automatic breaking (AEB) as standard? This nifty technology works at speeds of up to 20mph, where the car will automatically apply the brakes if it’s sensors indicate that a crash could be about to happen. And the proof, as they say, is in the pudding, as AEB has been proven to prevent 38 per cent of crashes, and reduce personal injury claims by around 21 per cent. In addition, the Volvo V40 is one of just two cars in its class in possession of pedestrian automatic breaking. When you consider that more than 5,000 pedestrians are killed or seriously injured on UK roads each year, this life-saving technology is really important.

While the V40 comes with plenty of fantastic safety features as standard, We love that motorists have the choice to include an Optional Safety Pack. This includes even more compelling features:

  • Road Sign Recognition: Identifies the speed limit for the road and displays it on the dashboard.
  • Adaptive Cruise Control: Automatically keeps drivers at a safe distance from the car in front.
  • Advanced Lane Support: Actively steers motorists back into their lane if it senses the car drifting.
  • Blind Spot Warning: Alerts drivers who indicate to move out when there is a car approaching from behind.
  • Driver Monitoring System: Creates an alert if the motorist’s driving indicates signs of fatigue.
  • Automatic Braking (AEB): Working at speeds of up to 50mph, and incorporating pedestrian and cyclist detection.
  • Active High Beam: When it detects the headlamps of oncoming traffic or rear lights of vehicles in front, it switches from main to dipped beam headlights.

This  is a prime example of what makes the Volvo V40 such a ground-breaking vehicle. Let’s look at how the Volvo V40 rates for Euro NCAP:

Euro NCAP Protection Score

Adult 98 per cent
Child 75 per cent
Pedestrian 88 per cent
AEB Name by manufacturer Collision Warning with Full Auto Brake and Pedestrian Detection

Key facts about Euro NCAP

If Euro NCAP is a completely new concept, you’ll want to know what this respected ranking is all about.

Euro NCAP is a five-star safety rating system designed to help consumers make smart decisions about their purchase. It helps motorists to compare vehicles easily, and spot the safest choice for their needs. The rating itself is awarded following a series of vehicle tests designed to simulate accident scenarios that could result in injuries, or even death.

The number of stars a car is awarded at the end of testing is a reflection of how well it performed, also taking into account the safety equipment available to consumers.

The Euro NCAP’s star system goes beyond legal requirements: for example, a car that just about meets minimum legal demands wouldn’t be eligible for any stars at all. Not that this officially rates a car as ‘unsafe’, it simply means that the vehicle isn’t as safe as its competitors.

If you have more questions about the Euro NCAP rating system, you can find further information here: