The VinFast VF8, a Vietnamese EV aiming to enter the US market, recently underwent crash tests conducted by Euro NCAP.

The VF8 received a rating of four out of five stars, which puts it below its main competitor, the Tesla Model Y. While the VF8 was evaluated using Euro NCAP’s more stringent 2023 testing protocol, the Vietnamese crossover still falls short in terms of safety compared to its American counterpart.

Euro NCAP assessed the VF8’s safety performance across different categories. The VinFast car got scores of 76% for adult occupants, 89% for child occupants, 77% for vulnerable road users, and 79% for its safety assist systems. (“Vulnerable road users” refers to pedestrians and cyclists.)

In contrast, the Model Y achieved scores of 97% for adult occupants, 87% for child occupants, 82% for vulnerable road users, and 98% for its safety assist systems.

The VF8 provides satisfactory knee and femur protection for both the driver and front passenger during a frontal impact. However, certain dashboard structures pose a risk of injury to occupants of different sizes and positions.

Additionally, the deployment of the driver’s knee airbag did not offer adequate protection to the inboard leg, which further impacted the car’s overall safety. The deformable barrier test indicated that the VF8 might be more aggressive in a frontal collision.

Moreover, chest protection was rated as marginal for both the driver and rear-seat passenger during the full-width rigid barrier test. While the side barrier test demonstrated good protection of critical body parts, the side curtain airbag did not deploy correctly. It became trapped on the interior trim.

The VF8 scored top marks in the child occupant protection category. It provided effective protection for all important body parts in both frontal offset and side barrier tests, according to InsideEVs.

The European crash test is not the first time safety concerns have been raised about the VF8. Earlier this year, VinFast recalled almost a thousand US V8s due to a technological defect with the control panel. The issue caused drivers to not be able to see essential information like speed and indicator lights.

In its defense, VinFast has pointed out that it received a 5-star safety rating following a separate round of crash tests in Southeast Asia. The crash tests were conducted by the ASEAN NCAP safety rating program.

Safety is even more important for EVs than for conventional gas-powered cars. Market research indicates that many Americans are shunning EVs due to safety concerns. These safety concerns are largely a result of controversies surrounding EV leader Tesla’s autonomous driving technology.

Image Source: Euro NCAP