Mechanical locking mechanisms are prone to wear and tear, which is why they need to be inspected and serviced properly
A car’s bonnet / hood opening while driving at a high speed is not a new phenomenon. Such incidents have been reported from across the globe involving various car models. There can be a number of reasons for such failures.
In a recent case, a Tata Harrier owner has shared his experience of the bonnet opening up while driving on a highway. As can be seen in the image, the bonnet flew open and crashed into the windscreen. It’s good to know that no one was injured in this freakish incident.
Tata Harrier bonnet flies open – what went wrong?
As complete details are not available, it is difficult to fix the responsibility for this incident. One of the simplest explanations could be that the bonnet was not closed at all. Or it could be partially closed and no one noticed it. Harrier does not have a hood open warning system. Until one actually suspects a partially closed hood, most people would hardly care about checking such things.
Another possibility could be a mechanical failure of the locking mechanism. It could have occurred due to regular wear and tear, or faulty fitting of the locking mechanism. Or the lock could have simply failed due to a sub-standard component.
The very bed service from marudhara motors tata dealer.I just take my vichle from service centre today And on highway the front Bonet is open automatically and my reletive and his full femily.
Sweta – 9214487422
RJ39CA3822 @TataMotors @RNTata2000 pic.twitter.com/Ax8XAwtDJo
— giri raj sharma (@giriraj67303471) July 29, 2023
OEMs source parts from various vendors and determining the quality of each single unit is impossible. Metal parts can have microscopic cracks deep inside, which may eventually fail over a period of time. A detailed investigation is needed to determine what exactly went wrong here.
Overlapping bonnet design of Harrier also makes it difficult to differentiate between a locked or latched position. The difference could be an opening of just around a centimetre or even less. This may not be noticeable to an untrained eye. Driving at high speeds may have caused the latch to disengage or fail completely.
Owner alleges bad service by Tata dealer
According to the owner, the incident occurred on the same day after he had gotten the SUV serviced from the Tata dealer. As he was driving on the highway, the bonnet suddenly flew open and hit the windscreen. It is not known how long the owner had to drive blind on the highway. Anyone who has experienced such an incident would know how scary it can be to suddenly have the front view completely blocked.
One doesn’t have any clue of what lies ahead. At high speeds, the bonnet flying open can be one of the worst nightmares of driving a car. One can push hard on the brakes, but that can cause a pileup on the highway. A good way to deal with the situation is to put the hazard lights on and slowly maneuver the car to the side of the road. With the help of some watchful road users, one should be able to get to safety.