Top tether

Following ASEAN NCAP’s discovery that a Malaysian carmaker had removed the top tether fitment in a previously tested and rated vehicle, Perodua issued a statement on the matter earlier today, and now, Proton has done the same, doing so via an announcement through its official Facebook page.

The following is the automaker’s statement, in verbatim:

Proton Holdings Berhad (“Proton” or “the Company”) would like to issue a statement in relation to the statement released by ASEAN NCAP on 13 October 2015.

Proton has been testing many of its cars worldwide such as Australia and previously in Europe. The Company has also sought the service of world-class agencies and test labs to ensure stringent tests and outcomes.

From the experience of dealing with leading and world-class agencies, the normal procedures of these agencies would be to thoroughly inform and notify the Company in the event of discrepancy, defects or faulty elements, before any public statements are issued regarding the tested cars.

In this instance, we will consult ASEAN NCAP on the matter as we have not been notified officially. Hence, we are unable to confirm or deny the matter.

We wish to assure the public that all Proton cars meet the regulatory safety standards in all markets that we are operating in, especially in Malaysia. We will continuously pursue to enhance our products and services as well as make improvements where necessary.

Earlier, it was reported that ASEAN NCAP received complaints from consumers over a removal of a safety specification in a previously tested vehicle. It has been reported to the agency that the top tether fitment, vital in improving the level of child protection, has been removed from the Malaysian-made model.

top tether attachment

In a press statement, ASEAN NCAP secretary-general Khairil Anwar Abu Kassim stated that the action of removing the particular fitment will undoubtedly have a severe impact on the result of the Child Occupant Protection (COP) rating in the car’s ASEAN NCAP test. He added that the variation or exclusion of such a specification is not allowed.

The agency did not reveal the automaker or the model, but said that the removal of the fitment is an irresponsible act by the manufacturer. Khairil said the fact needs to be made public in order to demonstrate that any compromise to safety is not tolerable.

He added that the results from an ASEAN NCAP rating is a “promise” between manufacturers and NCAP, especially on the safety fitment installed inside their respective vehicles, and thus the manufacturer had broken its promise.

The agency said that it will be sending a show cause letter to the said manufacturer with demands on a plan to recover the situation. The result from the discussion will be that either the car will need to be retested as a lower specification variant or have its total rating suspended. The overall finding will be made public, and ASEAN NCAP said it is also investigating another model from the brand that has been assessed by the agency.

The full story and an explanation of what the top tether does here.