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

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

by: Chris Rosamond

25 Nov 2021

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

The BMW joins the Audi A8, BMW 3 Collection and Mercedes GLE, which obtained related ‘superb’ scores in 2020, whereas the Cupra Formentor and Ford Mustang Mach E help methods have been judged as ‘good’ in 2021. Within the newest assessments, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Polestar 2 earned solely ‘reasonable’ scores, 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 automobiles examined this yr displaying pleasing ranges of assisted driving system help.

Of the automobiles 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 methods.

Matthew Avery, Thatcham Analysis’s Chief Strategic Analysis Officer, stated: “Assisted-driving expertise should strike the fitting stability between providing a significant degree of help and making certain 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 grow to be satisfied that their function is secondary.”

When Thatcham first began taking a look at driver-assistance methods, it raised issues that automobile makers might be overselling the expertise in a manner that might be complicated and harmful to shoppers, and it downgraded the Tesla Mannequin 3 to ‘reasonable’ consequently.

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

“All seven automobiles we’ve simply examined are clearly marketed as having ‘driver help’ capabilities, not ‘automated’,” stated Avery. “These methods are engineered to contain and help the motive force in a really cooperative method. They’re actually not making an attempt to supply automation, the place the driving activity will be relinquished to the car, and we strongly consider that’s the fitting factor to do.

Tester’s feedback

Thatcham’s chief analysis officer Matthew Avery has offered feedback on every of the automobiles on this yr’s take a look at:


“Our top-performing car is the BMW iX3 which is a premium, battery-electric SUV. It is the one car to get our ‘superb’ grading. It responded effectively in our collision-avoidance situations 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 the right way to use the system.”

Ford Mustang Mach-E

“Ford’s battery electrical Mustang Mach-E achieved a ‘good’ grading. It is obtained an excellent Security Backup system which scored 83%, and it has typically well-balanced Assisted-Driving performance. Nonetheless, we do suppose the identify of ‘Co-Pilot 360’ is a bit ambiguous and does not adequately describe the actual 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 car with a plug-in choice and receives a ‘good’ grading. The ‘Journey Help’ identify precisely portrays the function of the system, which has well-balanced Driver Engagement, Automobile Help and Security Backup options. A superb choice out there.”

Polestar 2

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

Hyundai Ioniq 5

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

Toyota Yaris

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

Vauxhall Mokka-e

“The Mokka-e is the fifth battery-electric car on this yr’s assessments, however 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 knowledge the motive force is receiving from the system might not all the time be dependable.”

2021 Assisted Driving Grading outcomes


Driver EngagementAutomobile HelpSecurity Again-upRanking
BMW iX385%83%86%Superb
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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