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Old 3rd May 2011, 14:24   #31
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

IIRC, Even Maruti advises against fitting ABS outside the factory. The entire wiring harness needs to be changed, along with the ECU (or ECM in Maruthi's terms) reprogrammed, and change in the braking system.

Well, theoretically, it can be done. But, in India, I believe its practically, impossible.

Well, if companies provided a ready-to-fit ABS kit, including the ECU, then it might be possible, but AFAIK, no companies provide the same.

Last edited by .anshuman : 3rd May 2011 at 22:15. Reason: Typo corrected, 'h' removed from Maruti. Thanks
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Old 3rd May 2011, 14:30   #32
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

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Originally Posted by dhanushs View Post
IIRC, Even Maruthi advises against fitting ABS outside the factory. The entire wiring harness needs to be changed, along with the ECU (or ECM in Maruthi's terms) reprogrammed, and change in the braking system.

Well, theoretically, it can be done. But, in India, I believe its practically, impossible.

Well, if companies provided a ready-to-fit ABS kit, including the ECU, then it might be possible, but AFAIK, no companies provide the same.
Exactly right.

However the point was (we have digressed slightly) can it be provided as an option even on the base variant.

the best option of course is factory fitted. but if that is not economical or practical (plus the company want to save excise taxes) then it is actually possible to do at dealership level too.

the problems of course are many if you do the latter - e.g. car will come to the dealership with a non-ABS system. What to do you with the old system once the entire assembly is replaced? Do you send the car without any brake assemple to the dealership and then install there ... (all bad options)

so practicality wise it is very hard for a lot of reasons - meaning costs will not work either way (even after saving taxes).
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Old 3rd May 2011, 14:35   #33
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

The biggest problem auto companies would face in such a case would be economies of scale. Most auto companies would be sourcing components like ABS from smaller manufacturers & it would be logistical and financial nightmare to keep up with inventories. In a country crazy about economy followed by a craze for accessories and a disregard for the overall safety why should the manufacturer bother at the end of the day.
Ok here's a small test which I perform on people & I request others also to perform the same. Just ask:
What would choose a Swift Ldi with ABS & Air bags for the same price as a Swift Vdi without ABS & air bags. Probabilty of the Vdi being selected hands down by most is very high. Please note that this test is not for ppl on this forum, its for the aam janta which unfortunately make a majority of the population and for whom the manuf. is really bothered about. Sad but this is the truth.
P.S. Wearing a helmet is mandatory, how many people actually have a full face helment with a visor with ISI certification. I have seen so many ppl wear what I call an inverted vessel on their head, which is not even strapped properly. This is nothing but a farce. This is even more evident in Delhi NCR. In Mumbai the situation is even more funny, ppl fear full face helmets but keep the base just on top of their heads & to top of it all drive like maniacs. What a mockery of safety & when they die when they crash badly the public blames the car driver.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 14:43   #34
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

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Originally Posted by vina View Post
If the manufacturer wants this to be a component that can be added at teh dealership level then it is actually pretty straight forward to do.
Exactly!. but does any manufacturer provide ready to fit kits?. AFAIK - NO. and that I guess is because, they cant take the risk of a shoddy A.S.S job of fitting the ABS and end up loosing reliability.
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The ECU changes are mostly software upgrade, I don't think different ECU is used (or need to be used) on different versions of the car now - the PCB BOM is not so much that it merits hardware changes.
AFAIK, ABS has a stand alone control unit, and it communicates to the master ECU. The master ECU of same model cars with ABS and without ABS are the same, with slight firmware change.
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Also I'm not sure Airbags need much programming (though ABS probably will) at least for cheaper systems - the accelerometer (crash sensor) signal goes directly to the explosive charge. The only programmablity on most systems is whether you can turn it off - which is actually akin to putting a switch between the sensor and the charge.
Not sure about the airbags, but I guess it too has a separate control unit which communicates with the master ECU. Regarding sensors, not only impact sensors, but, an airbag system will need seat weight sensor or seatbelt sensor for trigger. Not sure, if a dealership in India will have enough knowledge to carry out these.
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If you can remap the whole CPU to get better power (even customised power curves for racing) then this can be done too.
Vina, these are safety features. AFAIK, most remapped cars arnt exactly the same. One can live with slightly less or over tuned engine, but one may not be able to survive a slightly delayed ABS and Airbags system.

EDIT: Just saw your post.
Quote:
Originally Posted by vina View Post
... ... (all bad options)

so practicality wise it is very hard for a lot of reasons - meaning costs will not work either way (even after saving taxes).
Yes, along with cost, the reliability will be lost, and as these systems aid safety, one cannot compromise on it. What manufacturers can do is, give these features as an option with even the base varient, and reduce the 'light years' of waiting periods, to atleast 'light months'.

Last edited by dhanushs : 3rd May 2011 at 14:48.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 15:15   #35
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

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Originally Posted by vina View Post
The ECU changes are mostly software upgrade, I don't think different ECU is used (or need to be used) on different versions of the car now - the PCB BOM is not so much that it merits hardware changes.
Once again easier said than done . Show me one example of a successful transformation in our land. I guess no one wants to take it to that level simply because of the complexity involved and the lack of expertize.

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If you can remap the whole CPU to get better power (even customised power curves for racing) then this can be done too. Question is how much are you willing to pay - and that's what I said.
That's a complete different ball game in itself. A remap doesn't come cheap , I am sure we have folks who are ready to invest in this kind of a mod.

My question still remains,

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Originally Posted by rjstyles69 View Post
If someone did, what kind of real time testing does this go through ? Manufacturers would definitely have access to infrastructure which allows for testing, outside the assembly it's seldom you would find it.
My response here is purely based on the research I did before I picked up my M-Hawk . I never wanted the side cladding's and was looking at the base model LX which never had ABS. Question was pretty simple, why cant we retro-fit one and reprogram the ECU ?
The answer was, that the ECU cant be programmed to support it. The SLE has an ECU which supports it, but then the whole braking system itself needs to be swapped.


You have a point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dhanushs View Post
Not sure about the airbags, but I guess it too has a separate control unit which communicates with the master ECU. Regarding sensors, not only impact sensors, but, an airbag system will need seat weight sensor or seatbelt sensor for trigger. Not sure, if a dealership in India will have enough knowledge to carry out these.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 15:52   #36
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

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Originally Posted by swiftnfurious View Post
I am yet to come across any mechanic or dealer who claims they can do ABS / Airbags for any cost ! Simply put, it cannot be done outside the assembly line !!



If an educated forum life t-bhp thinks safety packages are just decorative items worth a premium, nothing better said about the common people !



How do you arrive at the 1L premium for ABS + Airbags?? It should not be more than 50K. ABS alone is just a 25K more.




I have seen videos which shows collision impact for passengers at a speed of just 20kmph !! Would you mind searching for some and watching those?

**************************************

We all have only one life - Why do we need to compromise on it for a stupid 50K - 1L ?? Better safe than be sorry. Please remember we don't have the luxury of rewinding & deleting the bad experiences in real life !!

Let me respond to each of your inputs:

I never said ABS and Airbags are decorative items, it is your perception about things and my priorities about things.

Airbags to my knowledge cost upwards of 50K, combining with ABS it would cost close to 1L

Leave the videos aside, I am not here to compare who has watched more. Please watch and spend an additional 2L on top of it.Would like to know the miles that you have spent behind the wheels, please PM me.

The POV on spending that extra buck was mine, I was not looking for anyone to buy it. There are people who might as well want to save the extra buck on the additional safety features.

I hope that clears the air.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 15:54   #37
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

I would share few first hand experiences. The overall cost of DAB & PAB (Driver & Passenger Air Bag) and ABS is normally not more than 40-50k, including the ABS E(lectronic)CU and Airbag E(lectronic)CU. ABS ECU is normally integrated with the ABS modulator unit but the Airbag ECU is a separate unit and requires a compatible de-accelerometer (with appropriate mounting location) to sense a crash situation. These are in addition to the Engine Contol Unit (ECU) and Body Control Module (BCM).

The major difference comes from the body shell and frame (or sub-frame as the case may be). These require additional stiffening to meet the crash criteria for airbag application. As for ABS, there are specific mounting locations/ brackets that need to be added/ removed for making body/ frame suitable for each type of application (ABS / Non-ABS), in addition to wheel speed sensor and sensor mounting location is axles/ stub axles. Thus increase in variety of body shells and frame/ sub-frame for each model. (I am not mentioning the other smaller parts (by size or cost) like brake tubes, clamps as they can be hendled very easily.) So, if the manufacturers go ahead and give choice of ABS/ Airbag as options, then it increases the complexity at the assembly line and for a considerably low demand this doesn't make a business sense. Yes, the demand for safety features has not reached to an extent where giving them as even options across all variants can be considered.

Very few people (in % terms) actually opt for these safety features (I am also not one to opt, as I normally drive around 80kmph that too on highways). Most of the people (apart from auto enthusiasts like BHPians) get these features because they wanted the 'top-most' variant, and for them these features hardly matter. The customer clinics and dealership surveys in cities including Metros and A+ give this astonishing trend. (The 13 cities where BSIV is the current emission norm comprise of Metros and A+ cities, as far as SIAM is concerned)

Now, what if a manufacturer starts giving the safety features in all the variants ? The cost of each variant will go up by say 50k. This hits hard the VFM quotient as customer perceives to be getting something which is not necessity. So, the manufacturer stand a threat of loosing customer. Why would a manufacturer would want to create such a scenario. Yes, Nissan Micra and Toyota Etios are different on some counts, but its again more related to the manufacturing complexity. These OEMs are producing or gearing up to manufacture vehicles mainly for exports. The projected volumes for India are much less than the global markets. So they can have a body and other components suitable for airbags and ABS, thus can offer these features as optional, if required.

The latest roadmap as given by Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has issued a Draft National Road Safety Policy which mandates ABS and Airbags in all cars from year 2015. But the date is still far away and will be implemented in consultation with SIAM (considering the overall impact in term of parts availability etc.). Once such a kind of Motor Vehicle legislation is enforced, all manufacturers will abide by.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 17:37   #38
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

@dhaunsha,@rjstyles69

First of all - we all agree that at the moment it is either not possible or more expensive than the top end variant anyway - it doesn't make sense.

Having said that - it definitely is possible (and let's move that discussion to PMs) - specialty workshops probably can do it even today (after all engine rebore and rebuild is done already and that is way more complicated) and if you are replacing the whole break assembly (rather than parts) there is no reliability issue (otherwise it should be questioned how reliable is a break shoe replacement job).



My earlier comments on ECU remap etc. were in the light of:

1. I thought it would have to go through the main ECU - if it doesn't have to then it is even easier than I earlier wrote. That strengthens my argument.
2. To show that the job is not as hard as is being made out.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 18:13   #39
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

Thanks Autonoob,

I get your point now.


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Originally Posted by AutoNoob View Post
I would share few first hand experiences. The overall cost of DAB & PAB (Driver & Passenger Air Bag) and ABS is normally not more than 40-50k, including the ABS E(lectronic)CU and Airbag E(lectronic)CU. ABS ECU is normally integrated with the ABS modulator unit but the Airbag ECU is a separate unit and requires a compatible de-accelerometer (with appropriate mounting location) to sense a crash situation. These are in addition to the Engine Contol Unit (ECU) and Body Control Module (BCM).

The major difference comes from the body shell and frame (or sub-frame as the case may be). These require additional stiffening to meet the crash criteria for airbag application. As for ABS, there are specific mounting locations/ brackets that need to be added/ removed for making body/ frame suitable for each type of application (ABS / Non-ABS), in addition to wheel speed sensor and sensor mounting location is axles/ stub axles. Thus increase in variety of body shells and frame/ sub-frame for each model. (I am not mentioning the other smaller parts (by size or cost) like brake tubes, clamps as they can be hendled very easily.) So, if the manufacturers go ahead and give choice of ABS/ Airbag as options, then it increases the complexity at the assembly line and for a considerably low demand this doesn't make a business sense. Yes, the demand for safety features has not reached to an extent where giving them as even options across all variants can be considered.



something from somebody who actually knows. My take on this : if a manufacturer wants to provide dealership-level customisation then he could put all the mounts, stiffer body etc. by default. I mean with these things it is pretty hard to do on the assembly line itself unless the mounts/stiff assemblies are present my default but not used in the lower variants. Cost will be marginally higher (a few thousand, not even 10k).

Etios, somebody pointed out, provides option of ABS/airbag on all varients - I'll bet they are already doing it (otherwise for the small demand they'll need completely different Chassis on the assembly line). In fact I bet everybody is doing that on cars that offer the ABS/airbag as an option on any varient.

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Originally Posted by AutoNoob View Post

Very few people (in % terms) actually opt for these safety features (I am also not one to opt, as I normally drive around 80kmph that too on highways). Most of the people (apart from auto enthusiasts like BHPians) get these features because they wanted the 'top-most' variant, and for them these features hardly matter. The customer clinics and dealership surveys in cities including Metros and A+ give this astonishing trend. (The 13 cities where BSIV is the current emission norm comprise of Metros and A+ cities, as far as SIAM is concerned)


Now, what if a manufacturer starts giving the safety features in all the variants ? The cost of each variant will go up by say 50k. This hits hard the VFM quotient as customer perceives to be getting something which is not necessity. So, the manufacturer stand a threat of loosing customer. Why would a manufacturer would want to create such a scenario. Yes, Nissan Micra and Toyota Etios are different on some counts, but its again more related to the manufacturing complexity. These OEMs are producing or gearing up to manufacture vehicles mainly for exports. The projected volumes for India are much less than the global markets. So they can have a body and other components suitable for airbags and ABS, thus can offer these features as optional, if required.
I agree with you on the VFM and 80kmph part and I debated in my head whether I wanted a Figo ZXI or Titanium - almost the only difference (check here) between the two is ABS/Airbag. I didn't want Airbag at all at any price (have a little daughter who would in most cases be riding on her mother's lap in the front seat) but wanted ABS - finally took the bullet spent the extra 45k + taxes.

I have seen plenty of Figo titaniums on Hyderabad roads since then - in fact most Figos that I see are Titaniums. By tomorrow I'll get you the sales data from the dealer too. Given that practically the only difference between ZXI/titanium is the Airbag/ABS I'm pretty sure people are voting with their wallets.



Once this part becomes more commonplace I'm sure the prices will come down at least 50% - people (and companies) make a big deal about how complex these things are but actually they are simpler than a lot of other stuff in cars. At a difference of 20k I'm sure few would say no.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AutoNoob View Post
The latest roadmap as given by Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has issued a Draft National Road Safety Policy which mandates ABS and Airbags in all cars from year 2015. But the date is still far away and will be implemented in consultation with SIAM (considering the overall impact in term of parts availability etc.). Once such a kind of Motor Vehicle legislation is enforced, all manufacturers will abide by.
Let's hope that they make the ABS mandatory but keep Airbags optional - they are useless for people driving reasonably slow and dangerous if not used properly.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 18:38   #40
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

Manufacturers will give safety features only if the consumers insists. You have large group of *educated* people on team-bhp who actually question the benefit of ABS and feel that they can prevent skids by pumping the brakes. Auto manufacturers know that the jantha mostly gives a damn only about the price and mileage.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 19:59   #41
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

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Originally Posted by AutoNoob View Post
The latest roadmap as given by Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has issued a Draft National Road Safety Policy which mandates ABS and Airbags in all cars from year 2015. But the date is still far away and will be implemented in consultation with SIAM (considering the overall impact in term of parts availability etc.). Once such a kind of Motor Vehicle legislation is enforced, all manufacturers will abide by.
Great information. Thanks for sharing, was not aware of it. Hope this policy gets implemented and our cars become safer and better in the future.

In the meantime, lets go for cars that offer maximum safety. These features cannot be retrofitted unless one is ready to pay gazillions; which makes no sense since with that money one could have easily bought a higher variant or next segment vehicle in the first place.

We have only one life. I remember a notice in front of a factory. " Take care of your fingers, they dont grow back".

Kindly extrapolate that.

Nowadays in all segments we have options, thankfully.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 20:49   #42
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

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Rgds
vina
First of all I never said Indian people are foolish.. Second your relatives know what ABS, Airbags etc are so they can appropriately choose whether they want it or not, while there are many people in India who don't.
lastly, i never said having safety features will give you a license to drive fast. If a person is driving recklessly relying on safety features than he is a jackass. Safety features just provide you with a better control in case of a unknown sudden mis-hap.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 22:09   #43
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

Well having read most of the posts in the thread I feel aren't we wavering from the topic. Its a question whether Safety options should be available with base variants or not. Answer is a BIG YES. Because then those who can live debating whether ABS is needed or not or the bumper to bumper traffic situation doesn't warrant an airbag can be happy without safety features while we can happily buy base variants with the needed safety options.

But still I would like to comment on what people say as ABS not needed and airbag not needed. Whats the definition of a good driver who pays attention to all subjects on Indian roads, drives with safe distance always. Nothing. Because accidents don't happen in a length of minutes but in flashes of a second. And those unwanted seconds might not occur in bumper to bumper traffic but on that one day when you got an empty road and you relaxed thinking of the absence of every day nuisance on road. On that very moment you won't say oh I was not supposed to drive on this road. Come on guys, may God forbid an ill fated accident does happen, may be those few bucks spent on safety help us live again.
I personally feel it would be wonderful to have "customize your car" feature. Choose what you want, leave what you don't. If I wan't airbags and no climate control, I can have it, if you feel an automatic seat massager is better than ABS, you have it. All happy, no fights.
Just my two cents!

Last edited by justwheels : 3rd May 2011 at 22:10. Reason: spelling mistakes..Sorry!
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Old 4th May 2011, 00:35   #44
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

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Well having read most of the posts in the thread I feel aren't we wavering from the topic. Its a question whether Safety options should be available with base variants or not. Answer is a BIG YES. Because then those who can live debating whether ABS is needed or not or the bumper to bumper traffic situation doesn't warrant an airbag can be happy without safety features while we can happily buy base variants with the needed safety options.

But still I would like to comment on what people say as ABS not needed and airbag not needed. Whats the definition of a good driver who pays attention to all subjects on Indian roads, drives with safe distance always. Nothing. Because accidents don't happen in a length of minutes but in flashes of a second. And those unwanted seconds might not occur in bumper to bumper traffic but on that one day when you got an empty road and you relaxed thinking of the absence of every day nuisance on road. On that very moment you won't say oh I was not supposed to drive on this road. Come on guys, may God forbid an ill fated accident does happen, may be those few bucks spent on safety help us live again.
I personally feel it would be wonderful to have "customize your car" feature. Choose what you want, leave what you don't. If I wan't airbags and no climate control, I can have it, if you feel an automatic seat massager is better than ABS, you have it. All happy, no fights.
Just my two cents!
I would agree with almost everything you say except one thing - some safety features can be optional, others NOT.

And this is why I keep focusing on ABS (and no moderators, this is the right place, not some "ABS thread" to discuss these things)

when somebody choses to skip airbags, doesn't wear the (mandatory) seatbelt, or doesn't carry a fire extinguisher - he is risking his life and that of his passengers. I do have a problem with that on moral grounds, but I don't have a right to do anything except crib.

However when somebody skips ABS, or drives with a broken indicator light, or doesn't have good rear view mirrors he is risking his life, BUT my life too, if I happen to be around him on the road - and it is my right to be safe.

There are safe drivers, and I would put my views very clearly (rather than coming tangentially and mocking others while claiming not to) - airbags, ABS useless at low speeds for very careful drivers BUT when selling a car there is no way to know how a particular driver is going to behave. If a driver behaves badly, and some always will, or if a driver is incapacitated (sleep, heart attack ...) others' lives are at risk. And that is exactly why things like a good horn, good breaking system (ABS), good tyre treads, good lights can not be optional .
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Old 4th May 2011, 02:03   #45
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Default Re: Optional safety features with base variants.

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I would agree with almost everything you say except one thing - some safety features can be optional, others NOT.

And that is exactly why things like a good horn, good breaking system (ABS), good tyre treads, good lights can not be optional .
@Vina : Well I never meant that some features should be optional, it was only for those people who really don't want to understand the importance of these safety features at all. I ask only to be able to customize a car with options to add safety features. It could be one option: "All Safety Features selected", I am game for it.

I totally agree with your second point. These things actually cannot be optional, morally and practically. We are getting more concerned because this will increase the cost of the cars, least I would say about that.

And also, there is no correlation between a safer car being driven more badly and dangerously and less safer car (in features) being driven more sedately. Its the mindset. I have seen the most rash truck drivers and the most sane truck drivers, and the same goes with cars from MSIL to BMW and others!
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