The Nio ET5 all-electric sedan and EL7 zero-emissions SUV are the first models to be tested in Euro NCAP’s updated and stricter crash testing procedures for 2023, and both of them received the highly sought-after five-star rating from the European voluntary non-profit entity.

The Chinese-made ET5 received an adult safety score of 96 percent, a child occupant score of 85 percent, a vulnerable road users rating of 83 percent, and a safety assist score of 81 percent.

The EL7 SUV (known as the ES7 in China) fared similarly, with 93 percent for the adult occupant protection, 85 percent for child occupants, 80 percent for vulnerable road users, and 79 percent for the safety assist systems.

Both EVs were tested in standard specification, with the four-door sedan going to the crash pad with both the 75-kilowatt-hour battery pack, as well as the 100-kWh variant.

Euro NCAP classifies the Nio ET5 as a Large Family Car, with models like the Hyundai Ioniq 6 and Tesla Model 3 being among its rivals. For comparison’s sake, the Ioniq 6 was tested in 2022 by the European organization and got a five-star rating, with 97 percent for adults, 87 percent for children, 66 percent for pedestrians, and 90 percent for its electronic safety systems.

The Tesla Model 3 was crash tested in 2019 and also got a five-star rating, but with slightly different scores for each category: 96 percent for adult occupants, 86 percent for children, 74 percent for pedestrians, and 94 percent for its safety assistance systems.

This year, however, Euro NCAP has made the testing procedures harder, introducing more scenarios in the mix: Car-to-Motorcycle, Car-to-Car Crossing, Car-to-Car Head-on, Dooring, and Driver State Monitoring.

The safety organization notes that both the Nio ET5 and the EL7 delivered exceptional performance in most of the test cases, but that the lack of performance in some of the most challenging scenarios, such as the Car-to-Car Crossing at higher speeds, suggests that there’s still room for improvement.

The Car-to-Car crossing scenario is when a vehicle enters an intersection and another one is coming at a 90-degree angle. The car’s automatic emergency braking system should detect the oncoming vehicle and stop, avoiding an accident. Also new for this year is the Car-to-Car Head-on, where two vehicles are approaching each other head-on.

Nio has already produced over 300,000 vehicles since its inception in 2018 and plans to start deliveries of the ET5, ET5 Touring, and EL7 models in Europe soon.

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