Volkswagen UK says the Volkswagen Golf and Passat models have been praised by vehicle safety experts at the Thatcham Research Centre, who have seen a 45% drop in third-party personal injury insurance claims due to the fitment of auto-emergency braking systems.

The latest generation Golf went on sale in the UK in January 2013. All except for the entry-level S models have Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) as standard, with ACC including the radar sensor controlled distance monitoring system Front Assist, as well as city emergency braking and cruise control. Since launch, third party injury claims on the latest Golf are 45% lower than for the equivalent ‘Small Family Car Control Group’.

Matthew Avery, Director of Safety at Thatcham Research, said: ‘These findings are based on the equivalent of more than 7,000 Mk VII Golf models insured for a full 12 months on the road, and come from claims data from our insurance members. When we saw figures based on an initial small sample, we were surprised, as they exceeded our own performance testing. However the figures held up, even after almost doubling the sample group, and have therefore given us a glimpse of what safety on UK roads could look like in the future.’