HomeCar NewsMaruti Fronx Seatbelt Reminder Issue - A Bug or Cost Cutting?

Maruti Fronx Seatbelt Reminder Issue – A Bug or Cost Cutting?

Maruti Fronx Seatbelt Reminder Issue
Maruti Fronx Seatbelt Reminder Issue

To ensure safety of rear passengers, MoRTH had issued a draft notification last year mandating cars to have seat belt reminders for all passengers

With auto manufacturing involving hundreds of components and multiple suppliers, it is quite common to see cars facing teething troubles. In a recent example, a car reviewer has detected an issue with the seatbelt reminder system used in Fronx. Maruti had recently launched Fronx in the price bracket of Rs 7.47 lakh to Rs 12.98 lakh.

To have an issue from day 1 is a bit surprising, as cars are put to rigorous testing and evaluation before launch. Issues usually occur at a later stage, which are then resolved via recalls. Hopefully, Maruti will take prompt action to provide a fix.

Maruti Fronx seatbelt reminder issue

In a normal system, the seatbelt reminder indicator is displayed when an occupant is not wearing their seatbelt. Seats are equipped with sensors that can detect the presence of an occupant. Sensors are also there inside the seat belts, which detect if the seat belt has been fastened or not. When there is an occupant and if the seatbelt is not fastened, the system displays the seatbelt reminder icon on the instrument console.

But in case of Maruti Fronx, the seatbelt reminder is displayed even when there is no occupant. To turn off the seatbelt reminder warning, the seatbelt needs to be fastened even when there is no occupant. Take a look at the video below, shared by Rohit Paradkar, explaining the issue with a brand new Maruti Fronx.

It is not known if the problem is with the specific unit or present in all units produced till date. It is possible that a specific batch may be impacted. It is also not known if the seatbelt reminder issue is due to a software bug or a cost cutting exercise where seat sensors have not been installed.

Maruti Fronx brochure does mention ‘all 3-point ELR seat belts’. However, there is no mention of a seat belt reminder. In comparison, Grand Vitara brochure clearly mentions seat belt reminder (lamp + buzzer) for all passengers. Could it be possible that seat sensors were not installed to reduce cost of production? Sub-compact SUV segment is highly competitive and Fronx may have been under pressure to achieve an affordable price point.

A fix is needed urgently

If the concerns expressed by the Fronx reviewer are genuine, it needs to be addressed by Maruti as soon as possible. The primary objective of seat belt reminder is to instil the habit of wearing seat belts. Rear passengers often avoid wearing seatbelts, as there’s a general perception that a car crash impacts only the first-row occupants.

However, as seen with the unfortunate fatal incident involving Cyrus Mistry, seat belts are just as necessary for rear passengers, as it is for the driver and co-driver. Seat belt reminder, along with penalty for not wearing seat belts, can go a long way in nudging people to follow life-saving safety protocols.

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