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Old 19th October 2014, 15:35   #1
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Default Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Almost all models in the B2, C1 and C2 segments boast of ABS and dual airbags as a safety feature in their website in a prominent fashion. In most cases, these used to be exclusive to the exorbitantly priced top variant till recently. Situation seems to be slowly changing and at least some of the manufacturers have started providing them in lower variants.

Since the inclusion of top variant makes this a "Yes" for all these models, I'm excluding the top variants from the lists. We are only looking at the base and mid variants since those are the variants that sell the most and what we mostly see on the road. Also, someone giving safety kit as optional in a variant versus someone who gives it as standard is also immaterial since in both cases, the customer has the choice to get the safety features without having to buy a higher variant with a lot of features that are not useful to him.

Kicking off a discussion that can very well act as a HALL OF SHAME for those manufacturers who still keep safety out of reach from majority of their customers and wonder why the common man doesn't consider them as a premium brand. In all these segments, we are starting to reach a critical mass of manufacturers who offer safety features as standard so that the others cannot now say that we are not offering them because others are not doing it. Manufacturers who were blaming their competitors, it is time to own up your actions.

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B2 Segment
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C1 Segment
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C2 Segment
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Source: respective web sites.

Note: For comparison, having an optional packs on top of the highest trim doesn't make the non-optional top trim as a mid-variant.

Last edited by Rehaan : 19th October 2014 at 23:37. Reason: As requested. Thanks!
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Old 19th October 2014, 15:59   #2
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

In India, we the customers have to own a (small but significant) part of the blame as well. We want to pay for a high end music system in our cars, and when it comes to paying 80k extra for ABS+airbags, which would really be 20k each for four passengers, our family and their safety does not come first. What comes instead are some (thoughtless, IMO) arguments about how if the airbags deploy, it will cost the family. Such is the mentality many of us carry, bordering on immaturity (no offense meant to anyone here).

On the other hand, the suppliers are responsible for the safety of the equipment they provide. Is that not the case with a pressure cooker or a simple water boiler unit? Why does the Indian automobile manufacturer get away with anything different? Why is the Indian government apathetic to such behavior? And, as mentioned earlier, why is the Indian consumer tolerating this? The fact remains that we as Indians are not as safety conscious about safety, be it ours or others, as we need to be.

The government is now taking the right turn towards making safety a priority. Some manufactures have realized the marketing potential and a distinction point in offering safety, possibly preparing to factor in incoming government regulation.

Hope there is peer pressure on the three big manufacturers (Maruti, Hyundai, Honda) from VW and Toyota and safety equipment and build come as standard in all our Indian cars.
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Old 19th October 2014, 16:07   #3
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It's clearly an welcome move by the few manufacturers. By offering safety at base and(or) mid variants they are also attracting safety conscious customers to their brands
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Old 19th October 2014, 16:11   #4
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Going by the above chart and talking of base and mid variants as mentioned in the title - Swift, i10 Grand, Brio, Dzire, Amaze and Mobilio offers nothing in their Petrol models!

That's Honda followed by Maruti followed by Hyundai who needs to stop treating safety as luxury and provide it for the common man as standard part of equipment.
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Old 19th October 2014, 16:14   #5
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Didn't Toyota make dual-airbags standard on the refreshed Etios? That's a good move, that everyone should ideally follow (I'm looking at you especially, Maruti). I was following a VDi Swift in the rain today on Mysore Road and the poor car doesn't even have a rear defogger, forget a wash/wipe. How much does a defogger circuit cost?

I also don't understand having 'Option' packs on top of the highest variant. Shouldn't highest variants mean 'fully loaded, all we can offer is already in it' by default? It makes much more sense to have option packs for base and mid-variants, so people who actually want a subset of the top model's features (like safety equipment, better brakes etc.) can take those and leave out the stuff they don't want (overpriced bad OEM music systems, other accessories etc.)

It's high time Indian auto-manufacturers started offering real choices, instead of poorly thought out and worse implemented chrome/sticker jobs for facelifts. Maruti and Hyundai being market leaders should take the lead instead of regressing into bottom-dollar profit mongering. The new i20 is actually stripped of features compared to the outgoing model, very disappointing.

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Old 19th October 2014, 16:19   #6
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Thats any amazing presentation of data. Appalling standards followed by the manufacturers in INDIA.
Our transport minister said there are changes coming up, but they need to fix these glaring omission of basic safety features.
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Old 19th October 2014, 16:40   #7
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I would like to see such comparisons for available automatic transmissions cars in India.


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Old 19th October 2014, 17:40   #8
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

The new Government is proposing changes to the Motor Vehicle Rules and that will include basic safety features like Airbags to be provided in all vehicles.
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Old 19th October 2014, 19:01   #9
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Hi, Can you add ESP, hill hold. height adjustable seat belts, Seatbelts with pretensioners and load limiters ? Some or all of these are present in some of C2 sedans.
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Old 19th October 2014, 22:37   #10
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Assuming current generation ESC/ESP systems include ABS and Traction Control as standard, request you to add availability of ESC separately as well.
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Old 20th October 2014, 07:15   #11
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Until now, Honda had dual front airbags in all variants of the City but with the most recent one, they've taken the passenger airbag away. Ain't that silly.

I think regulation is the only thing that will get manufacturers to provide these safety features as standard and for consumers to actually spend the extra buck for them.
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Old 20th October 2014, 10:26   #12
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Somethings need to be made mandatory by the Govt.

In the European countries, safety features are mandatory. The same needs to be implemented in India as well.

With a stable progressive Govt. in place and a PM who is capable of taking independent and path breaking decisions, can we look at a change in this scenario now?
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Old 20th October 2014, 10:51   #13
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Thanks - it is eye opening and very useful.

However, how is Ecosport a C2 segment vehicle? Its a 4m hatchback on steroids if you pardon my crude classification, but its nowhere near the C2 segment in terms of space.

What did I miss?
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Old 20th October 2014, 12:21   #14
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Default re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by phamilyman View Post
Thanks - it is eye opening and very useful.

However, how is Ecosport a C2 segment vehicle? Its a 4m hatchback on steroids if you pardon my crude classification, but its nowhere near the C2 segment in terms of space.

What did I miss?
I took the classification from our monthly sales trend thread for all cars except for Ertiga and Mobilio which were classified under UV in the thread. I've put these under C1 since the CS versions that they are based on are in the same segment and are closer to C1 standards in terms of safety in general than with C2.

My guess: Ecosport is probably classified as C2 since it shares the bin with the Fiesta sedan (C2) and its main competition (Duster,Terrano) are also in C2. If we are re-looking at the Ecosport, Duster and Terrano as a whole being in C2, these are clearly eating away from the C2 pie more than C1 pie due to their cost.

If we just go by space alone, even the Mini Cooper, VW Beetle and Fiat 500 should all be classified as B2 segment.

Last edited by zenren : 20th October 2014 at 12:24.
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Old 20th October 2014, 17:35   #15
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Default Re: Safety features in lower variants of B2, C1 & C2 segment cars

When Honda didn't have a diesel City, they wanted to stay competitive with even with the changing end user needs. To stay relevant in the C segment, they introduced the low priced City variant, Corporate edition and it was refreshing to see it Honda didn't compromise safety on their Trademark product.
The corporate edition had Dr Airbag and ABS standard.

I personally think, ABS and Airbags should be available as an option throughout the range, starting from the base variant itself.

I also think that cars having greater number of safety features should be given a Tax Relaxation. Right now, we even end up paying the Excise, Road Tax, Sales Tax, etc. on top of the price of the ABS and Airbags because of the climbing Ex-Showroom price of the car. Because all the taxes are calculated based on that.

I have a feeling, if safety features carried some tax relief for the consumer, Volvos would be super affordable. I think Volvos don't compromise on safety features.
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