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Safety First – Assam bans Maruti Swift, Alto, Honda Jazz, Hyundai i10, Eon, Datsun Go, Tata Nano

maruti alto 800 crash test india
Maruti Alto 800 has a 0 crash test safety rating.

Gauhati High Court has given the order to stop sale of small cars which have failed crash test.

In response to a petition filed, a court in North East India’s state of Assam has ordered a ban overs sale and registration of small cars which do not pass crash tests. The list of cars that have been banned include Maruti Alto 800, Maruto Alto K10, Maruti Swift, Hyundai Eon, Hyundai i10, Tata Nano, Datsun Go and the recently launched Honda Jazz.

Obviously, the move has not gone down well with car makers as Assam is the largest market in North East India, which accounts for 12% of their total sales. Most of the cars which have been banned are amongst the best selling cars in the country. The ban will directly affect car manufacturers annual sales target. This too at a time when the auto industry is going through a sluggish period.

The petitioners have taken Global NCAP (New Car Assessment Programme) as the reference point to ban cars in Assam. This mean, about 140 models have been affected by this new ruling.

Last year, Global NCAP crash tested some of the best selling cars in India. Surprisingly, all of them performed miserably in the test, resulting in them scoring a 0 star safety rating in the books of Global NCAP. This created an uproar amongst the affected car brands. Even the governing body of Indian auto industry, SIAM (Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers), was of the opinion that tests performed by Global NCAP were too stringent and did not take Indian driving conditions into consideration. And thus no action was taken.

On the other hand, the petitioners in Gauhati High Court are of the opinion that they deserve cars which adhere to global safety standards. This is what has resulted in ban of aforementioned cars.

arai crash test

ARAI – The Automotive Research Association of India has built a world class facility in Pune where all new cars will be crash tested and given safety rating.

It remains to be seen if the court order is upheld once challenged by car manufacturers, who are of the opinion that that their cars are safe as per Indian norms.

As far as car safety in India is concerned, Government has already announced that they are committed towards making cars safer. From 1st Oct 2017, all cars on sale will need to pass crash test at the ARAI facility in Pune.

But the question is, will the cars be safer as per Indian standard, or Global standard?

Copy of the PIL filed in the High Court


About the author

Sagar Patel

Sagar Patel

A first drive in a manual rickety old van was enough to pave the road forward for 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.

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    • May be brio and micra.. Not sure if the results as cars for Indian market are not tested as there is no law requiring them to be tested. Govt and manufacturers need to put safety first. Introduce airbags and abs in base version too.

      Seat height adjustment, audio systems, larger tyres, leather seats, alloy wheels, start stop button, keyless entry can be made optional and have them in higher trims.

      Same with automatic transmission too. They will make cars safer as drivers can concentrate on road rather than on gear. AT is available at a very high price and most often does not come with airbags.

      Everyone should understand safety aspects and start buying safer cars only.

    • The crash tests were performed on entry level variants. Only Volkswagen Polo passed as per Global NCAP, as they have airbags as standard.

      As for others, they failed miserably. Global NCAP had asked Nissan to remove Datsun Go from the market as the car’s structure is so weak, that even after installing airbags, it will score a 0 rating in safety.

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