Why India needs safer cars, explained by Global NCAP

car safety in india compromised

India accounts for 10% of 1.3 million road accident fatalities globally despite accounting for only 1% of the world’s vehicle population. That’s a staggering number, which will continue to grow, unless buyers are not made aware of the importance of safety features in cars.

car safety in india compromisedIn India, about 1.38 lakh people were killed in around 4.9 lakh road accidents in 2012. Many of these would have survived, only if their car had basic safety features like Airbags and ABS. It is not that these features are expensive, for eg, Global NCAP says that fitting an airbag costs about $100 (Rs 6,000), which is nothing when compared to the fact that it can save your life if an accident occurs.

Earlier in the year, Global NCAP’s basic crash test results for entry level Maruti Suzuki Alto 800, Tata Nano, Ford Figo, Hyundai i10 and Volkswagen Polo were shocking. All these cars scored a zero and surprisingly none of them were fitted with airbags. Some of these cars don’t even come with airbags as an option and they are structurally week, which means even fitting them with airbags, won’t make much of a difference.

As a result of this result, Volkswagen rectified this by including dual front airbags as standard fitment on Polo variant from 1st February 2014. But, other car makers still continue to offer the same cars. Why is that? Mostly because of the fact that majority of Indian car buyer does not look for safety features as mandatory while buying a car. All they want is a price tag that is as low as possible. This is what Global NCAP believes has to change, in order to reduce number of fatalities due to road accidents in India. They have explained in detail the importance of cars with better safety rating in the video below.

About the author

Sagar Patel

Sagar Patel

A first drive in a manual rickety old van was enough to pave the road forward for Editor in Chief, Sagar Patel. When not driving or riding, his dexterity shifts gear to voice passion through words via reviews, and news, all the while, closely monitoring updates from the auto industry.

Email - sagar@rushlane.com

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  • usebrain

    why is it media not mentioning or saying about the Swift?

    • sagar112

      at least it offers ABS and Airbags as option :)

      • usebrain

        airbags of i10 collapsed as that of it’s under quality structural model
        though Swift is been tested none has exposed it. this is what i call buying of media
        alto is been tested and released prior to the swift testing..ndtv showed the swift testing but soon removed off from its site.
        none of the media exposed it
        if swift been success don’t you know how the marketing strategy would have been changed?

        • sagar112

          Global NCAP has not released any test results for the Swift yet, but
          there is one available by Euro NCAP
          http://www.euroncap.com/results/suzuki/swift.aspx which gives it a five star rating.

          I am not siding with the swift, without airbags it might also suffer the same fate as that of VW Polo. But it is good that Maruti is offering ABS and airbags at least as option.