Produced jointly by various specialist bodies (ADAC, TCS, ÖAMTC and Stiftung Warentest), crash tests are designed to assess safety and reliability of each car seat. They come in addition to European type-approval tests currently in force (R44/04 and R129). Twice a year (May and October), the various models selected are tested in all possible configurations in order to accurately assess a number of criteria, such as safety, ergonomics and comfort or even pollutant content. By assessing all these parameters, we can then establish a final mark for each of the seat models tested. The results are then communicated to the general public to enable parents to choose the best seat for their child. the best car seat for their children. In this article you will find all updated results of ADAC crash tests year after year of 2008 to date.
How are Crash Tests carried out?
Car seat crash tests are carried out in close collaboration by various independent European bodies (ADAC, TCS, Stifung Warentest and ÖAMTC). Their aim is to evaluate car seats marketed by the various manufacturers. The tests are carried out twice a year. The first will take place in springin May, while the second will take place in September. in autumnin October.
The results are then made public via the various consumer associations. (UFC-Que Choisir for France) so that parents can find out about all the marks obtained by the various car seats tested. Unfortunately, due to the large number of models available for sale, not all car seats can be tested.
Nevertheless, every year around forty models which are selected on the basis of their popularity or innovation to undergo a battery of tests. The aim is to cover the car seat market as complete as possible, with each seat purchased from a single supplier. anonymously from retailers.
It is important to point out that the ratings issued by these bodies in no way replace current European regulations (R129 and R44). All car seats tested, whether they get a positive or negative ratinghave European type-approval allowing them to be marketed and used on the European market.
Crash tests carried out by these independent bodies being more demanding and rigorous than those required by European regulations, they have become, over the years, more and more complex, a benchmark. These bodies carry out both static and dynamic tests to check that the degree of safety and reliability of each model. Whether it's a baby cosy or a car booster seatThe tests carried out are the same for all car seats.
What are the Main Crash Test Evaluation Criteria?
To assess car seats, the various bodies (ADAC, TCS, Stifung Warentest and ÖAMTC) work in close collaboration with each other in the these crash tests. The crash tests of head-on and side-on collisions are, for example, carried out at the technical centre in ADAC (German Automobile Club)tests, the operation and ergonomics of the seats are carried out jointly by the TCS (Swiss Automobile Club) and ÖAMTC (Austrian Automobile Club) while the Stifung Warentest (German consumer association) takes care of have the content of harmful substances assessed of the materials contained in each seat by independent laboratories.
Overall assessment of each seat takes into account factors such as safety, installation, finish, comfort, risk of misuse or even the presence of harmful substances. These tests are carried out using latest-generation models (Q-Dummies) of different sizes, both in the seated position and in the reclined/lying position (where the seat allows). When a car seat is approved for different types of mounting (seatbelt, ISOFIX, with or without base, rear-facing and/or forward-facing) or for several restraint systems (harness, shield or seatbelt) and several children's sizes/weightsAll possible configurations are tested separately. The final score is then determined from the results obtained for each of the criteria. Each criterion being weighted differently.
Lists of Different Assessment Criteria
Safety (50% of the overall score)
Since 2020, car seat safety is tested on a test trolley on which a Volkswagen Polo VI (5-door) body has been mounted. The car seats are positioned on the rear bench. Previous tests were carried out in a Volkswagen Golf VII (2015 to 2019), a Volkswagen Golf VI (2011 to 2014) and an Opel Astra (2007 to 2010).
- Protection in the event of head-on collision (64 km/h)
- Protection against side impact (50 km/h)
- Passage de la safety belt / Harness adjustment
- Car seat stability on the vehicle seat
Installation / Operation (40% of the overall score)
Since 2020, evaluating the installation and comfort of car seats is carried out in a Ford Fiesta (3-door), a Volkswagen T-Cross (5-door) and a Citroën Berlingo (wagon). In previous years, these tests were carried out in an Opel Adam (3-door), a Ford C-Max (MPV) and a Volkswagen Golf (5-door).
- Evaluation of risk of incorrect installation
- Mounting of the child
- Installation of seats in three different test vehicles
- Seat adjustment the child's size
- Understanding instructions for use
- Cleaning of the cover
Comfort / Ergonomics (10% of the overall score)
When buying a child car seat, safety is obviously the top priority. However, the comfort and ergonomics of the seat are also important factors to consider to ensure a pleasant, stress-free journey for both child and parents.
- Available space in the child seat
- Space required in the vehicle for the seat
- Seated position
- Form of the file (for newborns only)
- Comfort of the head office
- Head support
- Leg support
- Visibility for children
Since 2011, all the components of the seat that are in direct contact with the child's skin are tested. The content of PAHs, phthalates, flame retardants, phenolic compounds, organotin compounds, AZO dyes and heavy metals is tested and assessed on the basis of the European REACH directive and the Oeko-Tex Standard 100. This criterion is not directly taken into account in the final rating, but an excessively high pollutant content may nevertheless lead to a lower rating. devaluation of the final mark.
What is the Final Grading Scale?
To present crash test results to consumers, organisations such as ADAC and TCS are using a rating system to which you can refer to choose the most appropriate car seat. Although they carry out jointly testing and that the final scores are the same between all the organisations, each chooses to communicate them in a different way. On the one hand, TCS displays a final rating ranging from 0 to 5 stars while ADAC's score ranges from 0.5 (best) to 5.5 (worst).
ADAC rating system
TCS rating system
Where can I consult my crash test results?
Crash test results published and distributed twice a year both by consumer associations than by automobile clubs but also by car seat manufacturers themselves. The latter do not hesitate to highlight good results obtained by their models. They are free to indicate the mark(s) obtained by affixing distinctive labels. The ADAC logo is the most predominant and the one you'll see most often on the display.
Crash test results (2008 to date)
To keep pace with the latest safety and follow technical developmentsthe crash-test protocol is regularly updated. It was amended in 2011, 2015 and more recently in 2020. For example, prior to 2011, the pollutant content of materials was not taken into account, whereas in 2015, it is a new side crash test procedure which has been put in place.
In 2020, it will be reworked once again, including the use of new test vehicle. The changes made to crash tests over the years mean that the current results are not directly comparable with those from previous years. Despite this, child car seats rated in the past can still be recommended. You can also consult the crash test results directly on the ADAC and TCS websites.