CHILDREN are better off riding in the new Mercedes-Benz GLE luxury SUV than any other new car.

At least that's what the scoresheets at ANCAP show following independent crash assessments in Europe.

Mercedes' new model earned a five-star rating according to ANCAP chief executive James Goodwin.

"The standout area of performance was Child Occupant Protection where it achieved the highest score to date at 92 per cent," he says.

"This result for the GLE is encouraging."

A strong structure and nine airbags help the GLE protect occupants.
A strong structure and nine airbags help the GLE protect occupants.

The result pushes ahead of luxury rivals such as the Audi Q5 and Jaguar I-Pace which received 81 and 86 per cent scores.

Mercedes-Benz spokesman Ryan Lewis says the brand is "delighted the all-new GLE has been recognised for its industry-leading safety performance".

"Safety is a core brand value at Mercedes-Benz, and remains at the forefront of our vehicle development programs," he says.

There's no doubt the Mercedes is a premium option loaded with nine airbags, sophisticated driver aids and clever seats to help keep occupants safe.

Mercedes says next-gen child seats will communicate with the car and driver.
Mercedes says next-gen child seats will communicate with the car and driver.

Like most new Mercedes models, it will even emit a loud burst of sound from the speakers before a crash to trigger an auditory reflex in passengers, prevent hearing damage from burst eardrums.

It certainly isn't cheap, priced from $99,900 to $118,500 plus on-road costs.

But that doesn't mean buyers have to spend big money to get hold of a safe new car.

Mercedes-Benz GLE models are fitted with five seats as standard, with seven seats optional.
Mercedes-Benz GLE models are fitted with five seats as standard, with seven seats optional.

The much cheaper Mazda3 hatch and sedan holds the record for adult protection with a 98 per cent score - not bad for a car you can take home for $30,000.

Impressively, the Mazda scores 89 per cent for child protection, a figure matched by the new Toyota RAV4.

The GLE formed the basis for Mercedes’ ESF 2019 concept.
The GLE formed the basis for Mercedes’ ESF 2019 concept.

Benz experimented with next-gen safety solutions in the GLE-based ESF 2019 concept car which included a prototype baby seat capable of measuring vital health signs such as a child's heart rate and displaying them to front seat occupants.


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