BMW tops assisted-driving rankings in newest Thatcham and EuroNCAP evaluation

Testers give help packages a ‘thumbs up’ regardless of issues they might mislead drivers into dropping focus

by: Chris Rosamond

25 Nov 2021

 The BMW iX3 has earned the one ‘excellent’ rating out of seven vehicles assessed by Thatcham Analysis for assisted-driving options equivalent to velocity help, steering help and adaptive cruise management programs.

The BMW joins the Audi A8, BMW 3 Sequence and Mercedes GLE, which acquired comparable ‘excellent’ rankings in 2020, whereas the Cupra Formentor and Ford Mustang Mach E help programs have been judged as ‘good’ in 2021. Within the newest assessments, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Polestar 2 earned solely ‘average’ rankings, whereas the Toyota Yaris and Vauxhall Mokka-E help applied sciences are assessed as ‘entry’ degree.

Thatcham Analysis says the outcomes are encouraging, with all seven vehicles examined this yr exhibiting pleasing ranges of assisted driving system assist.

Of the vehicles examined in 2021, 5 are pure electrical fashions. The Thatcham assessments consider and fee the extent of driving help, driver engagement, and security back-up of their onboard programs.

Matthew Avery, Thatcham Analysis’s Chief Strategic Analysis Officer, mentioned: “Assisted-driving expertise should strike the correct stability between providing a significant degree of assist and guaranteeing that motorists don’t sit again and let the system do the driving. We’ve seen the damaging outcomes on roads world wide when drivers change into satisfied that their function is secondary.”

When Thatcham first began taking a look at driver-assistance programs, it raised issues that automotive makers might be overselling the expertise in a approach that might be complicated and harmful to shoppers, and it downgraded the Tesla Mannequin 3 to ‘average’ because of this.

The organisation says it’s reassured that’s not the case with any of the vehicles examined this yr, with the entire programs being described appropriately.

“All seven vehicles we’ve simply examined are clearly marketed as having ‘driver help’ capabilities, not ‘automated’,” mentioned Avery. “These programs are engineered to contain and assist the motive force in a really cooperative method. They’re definitely not attempting to supply automation, the place the driving job may be relinquished to the automobile, and we strongly imagine that’s the correct factor to do.

Tester’s feedback

Thatcham’s chief analysis officer Matthew Avery has supplied feedback on every of the vehicles on this yr’s check:


“Our top-performing automobile is the BMW iX3 which is a premium, battery-electric SUV. It is the one automobile to get our ‘excellent’ grading. It responded effectively in our collision-avoidance eventualities and at 85%, it has one of many highest scores for Driver Engagement, partly as a result of the iX3 options good in-vehicle video to point out the motive force use the system.”

Ford Mustang Mach-E

“Ford’s battery electrical Mustang Mach-E achieved a ‘good’ grading. It is received an excellent Security Backup system which scored 83%, and it has usually well-balanced Assisted-Driving performance. Nevertheless, we do assume the title of ‘Co-Pilot 360’ is somewhat ambiguous and does not adequately describe the very fact it is an Assisted Driving system that all the time requires the motive force to be in management.”

Cupra Formentor

“The Cupra Formentor is a petrol-powered automobile with a plug-in choice and receives a ‘good’ grading. The ‘Journey Help’ title precisely portrays the function of the system, which has well-balanced Driver Engagement, Car Help and Security Backup options. A great choice out there.”

Polestar 2

“The Polestar 2 is one other full battery-electric automobile and it will get a ‘average’ grading. It has an extremely good rating of 85% for its Security Backup, one thing you’d count on from a Volvo-derived automobile. But it surely’s let down by its Car Help rating, which is simply 50%, as a result of the system can not adapt its velocity for curves and junctions. This automobile is able to over-the-air updates, and Polestar has already confirmed that it’s going to enhance that performance for all its drivers quickly.”

Hyundai Ioniq 5

“The Hyundai Ioniq 5 is a brand-new, absolutely electrical automotive and it achieves a ‘average’ rating. It has good Car Help and good Driver Engagement. But it surely’s let down by its Security Backup rating of fifty%. This implies the automotive is much less succesful at supporting the motive force in an emergency.”

Toyota Yaris

“Toyota’s Yaris will get an ‘entry’ ranking, nevertheless it’s spectacular to see Assisted Driving performance on a low-cost supermini equivalent to this. Nevertheless, it is let down by its comparatively poor performing Car Help and Security Backup capabilities.”

Vauxhall Mokka-e

“The Mokka-e is the fifth battery-electric automobile on this yr’s assessments, nevertheless it’s additionally a low-cost one. It receives an ‘entry’ grading as a result of its Velocity Help system solely makes use of a digicam. This implies the data the motive force is receiving from the system could not all the time be dependable.”

2021 Assisted Driving Grading outcomes


Driver EngagementCar HelpSecurity Again-upRanking
BMW iX385%83%86%Excellent
Ford Mustang Mach-E69%71%83%Good
Cupra Formentor70%79%74%Good
Polestar 270%50%85%Average
Hyundai Ioniq 580%77%50%Average
Toyota Yaris79%56%53%Entry
Vauxhall/Opel Mokka-E67%57%44%Entry

Patrick Moore

Patrick is our chief editor and he's very passionate about cars. He has a bachelor's degree in marketing and he studies journalism. His favorite brand is BMW and he drives an X5 series. When he's not writing for, he enjoys spending time with his family and 9 years old son.

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