5 Most Unsafe Utes In Australia

November 9, 2017


Road Safety


Kristen Brown

A decent ANCAP rating is pretty much expected when buying a new car these days. After all, it's 2017 and safety has improved significantly since the days when cars were made of heavy metal and had other questionable safety features. But if you're considering an upgrade this year or are purchasing a second hand vehicle, know this: not all cars are manufactured equally. 

Here are 5 Utes to avoid buying if you give a truck about your safety. 

1: Great Wall Steed 2017

4x4 Manual Dual Cab 5sp 4x2 1010kg

Orange Great Wall Steed 2017

Boasting a 1 tonne payload for as little as $25K, there's no doubt you get a lot of car for your cash with the Great Wall Steed. But where tradies and farers will pay the price is if they are in an accident in one of these beasts. 

Graphic about car accident impact levels

If you're hit from the side, you'll be okay. Like many raised utes, the Steed's height works in it's advantage protecting the occupants body from harm. If you're hit front on or from behind causing you to crash into the vehicle in front, it's another story. You can expect everything except your head to have minimal protection, with crash tests showing the steering column, dashboard and footwell components collapsing in and crushing your mid to lower body.

4x4 Manual Dual Cab 5sp 4x2

Black Mahindra Pick-Up

With the recent added feature of airbags (which is expected in most cars built this decade!) this model of the Mahindra Pik-Up has upped it's game moving from a woeful 2 star rating to a still inadequate 3. 

Car crash impact levels graphic

Similar to the Steed, if you were in a crash in the Mahindra your mid to lower body would not fair well as the a-pillar and the road wheel would substantially intrude into the footwell, crushing your legs and feet.

Pedestrians coming into contact with this vehicle would end up worse off than if a safer 4x4 hit them with a poor pedestrian rating given, particularly in the child zone. 

3: Nissan Patrol 2015

Manual Series 5 Single Cab Chassis 2dr 5sp 4x4

Nissan Patrol 2015

This model has been scoring poorly since it's introduction to Australia in 2008. With other single cab types like the Navara scoring 4 and 5 stars in the ANCAP rating it's puzzling why the Patrol has not improved over time. 

Car accident levels of impact

This model is has minimal safety features which makes it unsafe for both driver and passengers. The chests of the driver and passenger have minimal protection and the large steering column and movement in the seat mount mean if you are in the unfortunate even of needing an airbag they will only 'marginally' protect your head.

The only thing you're 'Nissan' out on by not buying this ute is an injury. 


4: SSANGYONG Actyon Sports 2015

Manual Utility Dual Cab 6sp 4x2 727kg

Grey Actyon Sports Tradie 4x2

Specifically targeted at tradesmen, the Actyon Sports Tradie 4x2  is anything but the car you want to be relying on to get you to and from work safely everyday. With an relaxed approach to safety, the manufacturer has skipped out on adding curtain airbags but does get points for having rear seat anchor points. But it's not like you'd want the family to be riding around in the back anyway as the middle seat features a notoriously dangerous 'lap-only' belt.



5: Toyota Landcruiser Workmate 2015

Manual Cab Chassis Double Cab 4dr 5sp 4x4

White Toyota Landcruiser

Another ute coming in at 3 stars is the Toyota Landcruiser. Although this rating is just for the dual airbag model, most would expect an excellent safety score when buying any Toyota branded car. 

Graphic about car crash impact on human body

In the crash test, severe footwell rupture occurred meaning the knees and lower legs fared the worst. The mid body came out marginally better but still not acceptable to ANCAP's standards. All doors stayed closed in the test but getting the occupants out could prove difficult with crash tools being required to open doors.

Kristen Brown

Kristen is a Social Media and Content Marketing Specialist. She has experience writing on road and work safety and legal rights topics. Currently she leads the content for Smith's Lawyers as editor and content creator for the blog.