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Old 31st January 2014, 16:31   #16
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
The average car owner in India (unfortunately) prioritizes price & fuel-economy over safety. Problem is, he's also ignorant about safety standards or requirements. Manufacturers are only too happy to cash in on this situation.
More than the price, I think the average car owner is unaware of the minimum standards of safety that a car should conform to. Once we have a mandatory rating, things will change soon and the average Indian will be happy to pay 50K more to pick a car that has a better safety rating.

I guess, the manufacturers have taken the people of this country for a ride. This has been made possible by the fact that the Government has been looking elsewhere. The day we have an intent from the Government, things will fall in place sooner than we expect.

It is time for the Government to push all the car manufacturers in India to up the game.

I hope that the mainstream media can play a decent role in pushing the Government.
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Old 31st January 2014, 16:37   #17
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

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Originally Posted by avi550m View Post
I really do not get this,
Figo, Polo, Nano, i10, Alto 800 (All NO Airbags) - NIL Stars
Polo with Airbags - 4 Stars

[b]So the difference of FOUR Stars for the Polo comes just from having Airbags???

I thought that even without Airbags, the basic body structure (Crumple Zones et al.), combined with seatbelts, should provide a basic level of protection (and definitely NOT zero stars).
As mentioned on their website, only cars with airbags are eligible for getting stars. For knowing the harm to your body, check the PDF depicting the injury caused to various parts of the body.

Crumple zones still provide MOST OF THE PROTECTION as seen in case of the Polo.
Quote:
Does that mean that even though India was an export hub for the i10, they made the Indian cars with much less / poorer steel / different chassis structure? I really am flabbergasted.

I wonder if they test the Indian built Swift, Brio etc... would they also score a nought?

Looks like. Now I'm even concerned about the Grand i10. I hope that since the Eon was primarily designed in Korea, it could be better. Can't say though.

Maruti made Swifts/Dzires seem to be well built. I'm hoping the same about the A-Star. Brio based Mobilio is said to undergo ASEAN NCAP. So let's see...

BTW, I'd suggest you wait some time for your new car purchase. If MS makes airbags optional on LXi too.

GTO - Don't forget the Omni!

Last edited by amolbh : 31st January 2014 at 16:40. Reason: grammar
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Old 31st January 2014, 16:40   #18
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
- Make it mandatory that every car on sale has to have its safety rating displayed clearly (on the windscreen with a certain font size etc.).

(If implemented) this point especially will make eradicate the bare bone base variants with no safety aids whatsoever. Currently almost all manufacturers have their websites with all safety features highlighted, but only when you go deep into the features/spec sheet, you’ll know that its applicable to the top variant.
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Old 31st January 2014, 16:51   #19
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

NIssan introduced Micra with airbags in the base model, and what did they get for that????

Now they had to launched a stripped down Micra at 3.5 lakhs to try get some buyers.

Before we blame the manufacturers, we really must blame the consumers. We are not bothered about our safeties!! How many of us buyers went for the VXI trim with SRS and ABS for the old Ritz and instead preferred to get the Swift?
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Old 31st January 2014, 16:54   #20
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

My god!! What the heck are we buying as cars in our country. Its a cardinal crime for these guys to even sell these cars in any country. The surprise was with Polo, I seriously did not think it would score just 2 points even with airbags. German Engineering? Not in India I guess!
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Old 31st January 2014, 17:32   #21
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

I would also want to see the safety ratings of the same cars in the top spec variant.

I have a feeling that even if you buy the top spec variant with airbags there are compromises which indian manufacturers make.

For example the Swift diesel has a different front crash bar vs the petrol because of the intercooler. The petrol is beefed up but the diesel is thinner to accomodate the intercooler.

The Etios even with 2 airbags is made of the thinnest sheet metal.

Especially these made for india sub 4m cars. While designing the sub 4m cars they would have cut down on something knowing that the car will not be sold outside India and doesn't need to meet any international safety spec.
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Old 31st January 2014, 17:38   #22
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

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Originally Posted by amitayu View Post
Before we blame the manufacturers, we really must blame the consumers. We are not bothered about our safeties!! How many of us buyers went for the VXI trim with SRS and ABS for the old Ritz and instead preferred to get the Swift?
Not really. I'd say, blame the government.
Government has been increasing taxes on cars for two reasons: increase its revenue, and arrest the rate of increase of the number of cars on the road.

If the government makes safety features and NCAP mandatory, the latter intention will be satisfied. When the price of all budget cars increases by 30 or 40 thousand Rupees, most people will be forced to put off their car buying plans. I hope I don't sound like a guy who is mocking those who want to buy cars and can't afford, just because I have one already.

Not only that, people who have never heard of NCAP, are forced to learn about safety. And how many people are there who have no clue about automobile safety standards? Just stand by a busy road and observe for half an hour: whoever isn't wearing a seatbelt is one such person (of course, one in a thousand is that fool who knows the importance of seat belts and still doesn't wear one).

I really wish Punto was also tested. It would have been a positive advertisement for it (I am sure it will not be any worse than Polo).
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Old 31st January 2014, 18:00   #23
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Make it mandatory that every car on sale has to have its safety rating displayed clearly (on the windscreen with a certain font size etc.).

P.S. These Global NCAP dudes should have taken along a Mahindra Bolero or Tata Sumo in these tests, especially one fitted with a mega after-market bullbar! That would have left them speechless. Significant body injury? Check. Possibility of death to driver / passengers? Very high. Pedestrian safety? Zero. Damage to vehicle? Absolutely, unbelievably & shockingly None
Finally an authority started talking about safety in cars.

It used to make my blood boil seeing Hyundai proudly display a "5 Star NCAP Rating" sticker at the rear of its i20 offering, across all the variants!

on the Bolero/Sumo comments
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Old 31st January 2014, 18:18   #24
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

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Originally Posted by avi550m View Post
I really do not get this, according to their tests, the cars scored

Figo, Polo, Nano, i10, Alto 800 (All NO Airbags) - NIL Stars
Polo with Airbags - 4 Stars
I guess it's perfectly valid to be surprised by how these cars have scored zero and how Polo with airbags has scored 4. It is important to understand the way these ratings work. They don't work merely on how much safety equipment a car has, it is based on how effectively these equipment work. The rating is explained on various websites, but you won't get much detail to understand in depth what is measured during the test. I will highlight a few points I know.

1. Acceleration and force readings: All the dummies that you see in the car are loaded with sensors that record acceleration at various points. For eg, the acceleration of all joints in the limbs are measured on the driver dummy. If the knee hits the dash, you can imagine this reading will negatively impact the rating. Airbags greatly reduce the acceleration experienced by a body part and hence the rating is highly affected by their presence. Same goes for seat belt and seat belt pre-tensioners.

2. Crumple zone: Chassis design and materials used greatly affect the impact the crumple zone can dissipate. The main purpose of this zone is to channelise the impact of the crash away from the occupant zone.

3. Occupant zone: Occupant zone starts at the A-pillar and goes up to the back of the rear most seat in a car (in very loose terms, not a perfect definition). NCAP or any other safety ratings depend heavily on the integrity of this space after a crash. For eg, if the driver door frame is altered in a crash, that affects negatively. If you cannot open the doors after a crash and they are stuck, this also affects negatively as it hampers rescue effort.

There are many such parameters which are measured during the test and the sum total is used to arrive at the rating. I know it's hard to digest the fact that "best-sellers" in India are scoring a zero, but there is a scientific method behind these ratings and these ratings are the reason cars have evolved from a safety perspective.

Edit: Adding a link to the best in class super-mini in 2013 - Renault Zoe. This page explains in more detail what is measured.
Renault Zoe NCAP rating

Last edited by dgupta : 31st January 2014 at 18:32. Reason: Adding a link
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Old 31st January 2014, 18:21   #25
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

First, I wouldn't touch a made-for-india car. They are built for a special audience, one who values a 50K in the bank more than they life of a family member.

Second, even if a car has scored 5 stars in EuroNCAP, our engineers would de-engineer it to such an extend where they can sell it alongside all the other cheap cars. India loves VFM, buy one get one free, more car per car, etc.

Third, even if govt introduces crash testing for cars sold here, manufacturers would make one safe car per model and send it to the testing agency. The public would still get to enjoy their VFM cars.

No amount of legislation would help unless the public is willing to listen. It is not education that we are lacking, but we have got our priorities wrong.

Lastly, this is the libertarian in me speaking: Government should stay away from legislating such laws. This country is full of laws, and half of them are unenforceable. They just increases corruption. Legislating endlessly is a liberal trait, so I don't see a conservative government (the next one) legislating more laws than the current liberal one.
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Old 31st January 2014, 18:22   #26
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

At least it's heartening that at least a few cars have good structural integrity/stability. And it's always best to buy a top end car in India as those are, almost always, the only ones equipped with airbags and ABS+EBD. The value that we pay for a top end car is worth much more than investing in insurance - and I think these safety features are an insurance themselves.
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Old 31st January 2014, 18:39   #27
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

I believe the problem for manufacturers to voluntarily promote safe cars (on base variants with higher $$$ of course) is that the current average Indian consumer does not appreciate it. It takes just one manufacturer who is willing to lower safety and offer a product for less to start the price war. Hence only the top most variants are loaded with safety features for those who appreciate them and are willing to pay more (and not for an average first time buyer where car is more a status symbol than a convenience, so a bigger car is better than a similar priced, safer small car). It needs to be fixed by the government through regulation if immediate results are to be observed. If not, with rising incomes and awareness, the middle class will gradually start demanding it thus forcing the manufacturers to comply.

BTW, was really scared seeing the nano crumple much more than Alto. Is it due to the rear placed engine? Was thinking nano will be a good second car choice for city runs (~ 20Kms to office and back), but this is definitely going to make me think twice.
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Old 31st January 2014, 18:42   #28
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

I read the NDTV article,it has the replies from the manufacturers ,most of them say that "They meet INDIAN regulations"
Isn't that swell ?
I mean this is truly disgusting ,I own an innova and a wagon r ,I am selling off that piece of tin as soon as I possibly can.
There has to be some kind of moral with these manufacturers,VW acted as if they did not know how important airbags were,atleast they did something right.
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Old 31st January 2014, 18:53   #29
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Default Re: Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test

Very interesting finding! I wonder why they tested only the base variant of all cars, and why they made an exception with the Polo. This apart, they should have tested the Punto also.

What I am not sure of is the star rating on the second line. It seems to be rear seat safety. If so, why was the Nano's rear seat empty? And I'm surprised that the Alto did far better than the I10 on that score.
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Old 31st January 2014, 18:54   #30
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Yes, sure, why not, make it mandatory for cars to have airbags and abs and inflate their price, but first, let us see how many of us, who have a car , and which is better than the most basic Alto and Nano, and yet we did not opt for the ABS and airbag versions of our cars?
Taking such drastic steps will take us nowhere. We still have our major population running on 2-wheels. That, for me is a bigger problem. These things don't and cannot happen overnight. The Nano was our best shot at bridging the gap between the 2 and 4 wheelers, and yet it did not achieve what it was meant to. We are a developing nation and our automobile market is yet to mature and saturate. Making cars anymore expensive will only scare away the potential buyers upgrading from 2 wheelers. For the time being, we have to admit the fact that its cars like Alto and Nano which have made India a much safer place already. Not that I do not want airbags and ABS in every car, but you have to look at a much bigger picture. Having said that, the Nano is still 100 times better than a 2 wheeler in safety (as long as it does not catch fire ).
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