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View Poll Results: My car has
Seatbelts only 73 24.41%
Driver's side airbag 5 1.67%
Two airbags 3 1.00%
Two airbags + ABS (and more) 205 68.56%
ABS 13 4.35%
Voters: 299. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 4th November 2014, 15:56   #31
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

The "bike guy can only just manage to buy the lowest trim of the cheapest car" argument has one major flaw. It assumes that the current state of affairs in the Indian automobile market is a given, and a desirable one at that. The way I see it, the whole issue has three dimensions:
  1. Consumer - needs to be aware of safety, and willing to pay.
  2. Manufacturer - needs to provide adequate safety kit.
  3. Government - needs to introduce the necessary regulation and frameworks for enforcing and monitoring automobile safety.
The problem is that all three are missing in the Indian market! I agree that the bike guy cannot afford safe cars today. But that is not because he is not willing to pay for safety. He is in fact not willing to pay for alloys, touchscreen HUs, auto-folding mirrors, and keyless entry. His willingness to pay for safety kit is relevant once MS introduces a L(O) variant priced about Rs 20k higher than the regular L variant.

But we already know the answer to that one. MS is not doing so because it has not been forced by legislation.

Does MS have any ethical responsibility as India's largest car manufacturer? Ask that question only if you are willing to be mocked and accused of being condescending.

Last edited by TheLizardKing : 4th November 2014 at 15:57.
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Old 4th November 2014, 16:26   #32
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

Ethics in a capitalistic society? Good joke!

We need regulation. That's the only way to fix this mess.
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Old 4th November 2014, 16:53   #33
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLizardKing View Post
Does MS have any ethical responsibility as India's largest car manufacturer? Ask that question only if you are willing to be mocked and accused of being condescending.
Fatal flaw in your argument right there, my righteous friend. You're assuming a for-profit business will ever choose ethics over profit. Every business does what's best for them, not us. Any good the customer gets out of the equation is a secondary bonus, not the primary intent.
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Old 4th November 2014, 17:09   #34
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

While Safety is indeed paramount, and we as members of a respected car-forum need to do our bit to spread awareness about the safety features & maybe even press for the appropriate legislation to be brought about, I think the discussion will go on a tangent if we focus on MS or any specific manufacturer. Unless all manufacturers in India other than MS are providing
ABS/airbags in all variants of their cars, which is not the case, if you look up the entry segment cars from most manufacturers.

A cursory look at safety features in Hyundai offerings from their website :
- Among the 6 variants of Eon, only one has airbag - that too only driver airbag. I don't see any mention of ABS in the list.
- Santro has 3 trims - none have airbags or ABS.
- Old i10 has 3 trims - no airbags / ABS listed on the website for any of them.
- Even the i10 Grand across 4 trim levels has airbags / ABS listed as Option only on the top Asta variant.

So this is basically a situation seen across manufacturers. And like many said, in the absence of regulations enforcing safety equipment, legally they are not to blame.
This would have been the scenario in the West too, before Governments clamped in with regulations.

Last edited by supremeBaleno : 4th November 2014 at 17:24.
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Old 4th November 2014, 18:05   #35
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

I "may" be ridiculed for this post, but just some genuine concerns.

For starters, I have a Tata Nano. From whatever I know, it "seems" as safe as a Maruti Swift now. The only safety aspect in it is the seat-belts. It has seen two accidents for no fault of its own or the driver, without any damage to its occupants and running perfectly well right now @ 27K kms. Longer runs, I have a Honda City ZX 2006 that I bought used this year, which again is with just the seat-belts. While I do agree my life is more precious than the money, being very very practical, I am not able to afford ABS and Airbags. Its just not affordable, period. The only other option is driving the bike.

While I agree we should be buying safe cars, what if I have a budget of maximum 5-6 lacs (just for example). And all I get is Vxi and have to shell over 1.5 lacs just to get ABS, Airbags and other safety features. This is simply not affordable. Of course, I can drop my plans to buy a car and use my bike. But, that is more unsafe than the VXi I was planning to get. Or I can take my chances and go for a used car which may spoil my peace of mind and may also affect my already shallow wallet.

This is what manufacturers have exploited. And this is what hurts the most. They shamelessly tell us that their Vxi is safer than my bike which it really is. What they don't "do" is have an option pack with ONLY ABS, Airbags, Rear Wipers and like safety features which should not cost more than 25-30K.

I would like to know and encourage the team-bhp community to list the cars sold with a sensibly and reasonably priced option pack right from the base variant and put them in safe cars thread. Unless the base variants has an option pack, it should not be there in the safe cars thread.

Last edited by jagzrk : 4th November 2014 at 18:13. Reason: putting in my cars safety stats
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Old 4th November 2014, 18:11   #36
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

Expecting car manufacturers to prioritize morality over business in unrealistic. What's the point of adding safety features when people would rather buy a cheaper and less safe variant? Safety is unfortunately something that has to be enforced because buyers in India are selectively pocket conscious.

For example, the helmet rule in Mumbai was enforced not too long ago and 80% of motorcycle riders don't care about the safety helmets offer. However, they wear helmets at least to avoid a fine if nothing else. Similarly, unless the government makes basic safety features (including better build quality) mandatory, manufacturers won't take the first step.

Either the buyer mindset has to change or the regulations need to. The latter will be a quicker option.
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Old 4th November 2014, 18:33   #37
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

A very interesting connection comes into my mind when I go through the contents of the thread. Economics taught to me during MBA had a very interesting topic called the 'Rostow's stages of growth'. Basically this model has 5 stages of economic maturity of the market and the correlation between current economic maturity of a country and the maturity in terms of market thereby leading to better quality of life.

Each country invariably passes through each of the 5 stages of maturity an thus each country faces the same set of issues during these stages. The so-called developed markets of the modern era went through the Take-off stage (which is the 3rd of the 5 stages) between the early 1800s to the late 1900s. While India has arrived at this stage only after independence i.e a full century later. The take-off stage is marked by reforms in agriculture including a stage of self sustenance.

Next comes the Drive to maturity stage, which comes after a period of almost 50-60 years from the Take off stage. Now this is the interesting stage. While this period is characterized by good industrial growth and birth of new industries, this is also the stage where the cost of maintaining the general heatlth and safety of the population comes into picture. Talking in terms of automobiles, this is the stage that governments can invest time into making the required policy changes that take care of the general health and safety of the population. The west was at this stage during the 1900s to the 1960s. In fact, the US which is widely touted as the first country to reach the end of this stage, only made seat belts compulsory in cars in 1968 and made it mandatory for occupants to wear it almost 20 years later, in 1984 (source: wiki)

Now the argument may be that the west have already implemented these safety systems well before us, but taking cue from this model, we find that we are at the correct juncture wherein general awareness of people as well as the government increase and thus they correspond to framing policies that ensure safety systems are set in place for automobiles as well to take care of the general health of the population. At the same time, the general population also reaches the economic status to afford the additional cost that such regulations would bring in.(eg: Airbags, ABS etc).

All I can say is: All is not lost. We will definitely see such laws and regulations coming into picture corresponding to our growth stage and it is only a matter of time (maybe 3-4 years) before our government and the general public are aware of the importance of such safety features. I also sincerely hope that this model works for India as well

Last edited by racer_ash : 4th November 2014 at 18:40. Reason: corrected typos
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Old 4th November 2014, 18:45   #38
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

Folks, 2 points why this poll is flawed:

1. Team-bhp poll does not paint the realistic picture of India. We are an informed lot and I'm expecting to see the 4th option gather most votes.

2. Cars like Eon, Alto having Airbags is of no use when they are structurally so incompetant. The poll does not reflect that.
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Old 4th November 2014, 19:39   #39
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

Well, I see a lot of posts from those who own cars without the so called basic safety features (leave out the structural rigidity and other factors) and most of them talk about cars with these safety features not affordable. My two cents here.
1) As one of fellow members mentioned, how can you justify buying Ciaz/City or any other >Rs. 10Lakh car without these safety features?
2) Alto is definitely a safer option compared any two wheeler out there. I think the point here is that it is safer to be used within a crowded city. But how many of them are just being used within the city only. Eon, Alto, Omni, i10, Nano(yes, even a Nano) etc etc etc ply on our National Highways in triple digit speeds - there lies the problem. Are you one of them? Then there lies the answer.
3) Good that you are finally aware and being felt that others are showing a condescending attitude - hope it will help you in future.
4) I own a Punto 90HP - it is not that I was rich and could give ready-cash to the seller. Instead, I was ready to do some sacrifice to get a good safe car - I'm on a 7 year long car loan.
5) This I guess is a good survey and will help as an eye opener - after all we are here to discuss such stuffs?!

Hats off to TeamBHP.
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Old 4th November 2014, 22:21   #40
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vitalstatistiks View Post
Fair enough, quite a common argument. I won't go into the merit of the argument but you will appreciate even this argument only explains why an Alto or the like comes without these safety features. How does that explain a Ciaz or these sub-4 meter sedans (forget the Swifts and i10s) being launched without these features. The bike guy can't afford ABS and airbags in an i10 but needs to jump to C segment ?
Well I cannot speak for a Ciaz customer as I am neither one and neither will I have a budget for 2 to 3 years years to buy one. My choices are on a limited budget and in that limited budget, I choose the best I can and in those options which are available which serve my purpose in budget, peace of mind and mileage. People who buy a Ciaz without an Airbag or ABS must have their own mindset in doing so, for which I can't answer.
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Old 4th November 2014, 22:52   #41
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

How about an option for ABS but no airbags in the poll? There are many models with ABS available in mid variant but no airbags.
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Old 4th November 2014, 23:09   #42
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

It's easy for folks like me to talk about safety standards today, and vote No 4 in the poll. One is at a stage of life where safety of oneself and one's kids matter a lot, and is not stretching oneself for any car I buy.

But if I look back a decade ago, I was like most Indian car buyers too. My first car was a Second hand Zen - no safety features, a terribly unsafe body shell, and I happily drove it at 130+ kph. My next car was a Honda City (2004 model). Once again, it had no safety features. My third car (which replaced the Zen) was the Getz (which we still have and use occasionally) - once again, no air bags, and I did not even consider buying the GLX (with ABS) even though I could have afforded it. But that was largely due to a lack of awareness.

When I learnt driving, wearing a seat belt was unheard of. With my libertarian bent of mind, I resented the government forcing me to wear a belt. But that changed one day in the late 1990s when a close friend had his Estéem turn turtle on the Poona highway. He lived, because he was one of the few nuts who always wore a seat belt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by latentpotential View Post
An additional question, how many of you wear seatbelts when sitting in the middle or the back and request others to do so as well?
So yes, since 1998, I have always worn a seat belt while driving, and also used any available seat belt in cars where I am a passenger, and insist that all passengers buckle up as well. In fact, I even dig out the hidden seat belts of Meru cabs in Bombay and wear them.

Is better passive safety critical? Of course. But wearing seat belts, 100% of the time (including while dropping my kid from the parking lot to my society gate) is the first step.
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Old 4th November 2014, 23:31   #43
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

Quote:
Originally Posted by humyum View Post
People who buy a Ciaz without an Airbag or ABS must have their own mindset in doing so, for which I can't answer.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hayek View Post
IWith my libertarian bent of mind, I resented the government forcing me to wear a belt. But that changed one day in the late 1990s when a close friend had his Estéem turn turtle on the Poona highway. He lived, because he was one of the few nuts who always wore a seat belt.

Is better passive safety critical? Of course. But wearing seat belts, 100% of the time (including while dropping my kid from the parking lot to my society gate) is the first step.
I'm also against the government enforcing things that affect only me, like helmets and seatbelt use. It's one thing to enact laws to compel manufacturers to provide seatbelts, another to compel me to wear them. It's not the government's job to save me from myself - only from others.

Both cars in the family has ABS+airbags, and it was my conscious decision behind that. I can't speak for all , but there's a wide range of income among car users, and I'll leave out HNIs aside (I'm sure there are quite a few here on Team BHP itself).

Put simply in terms of safety :
car with 6 airbags > car with 2 airbags > car with no airbags > two wheeler

Any family is safer in a non-ABS/non-airbag car, than on a scooter/motorcycle. The typical segment this sort of buyer looks at is the Alto/WagonR/Eon/i10 range , and airbags are usually only top-end variants which itself it a stretch for many. So they choose lower variants.

You could say why not buy a used sedan with airbags for the same price as a new Wagon R ? The answer here is these price conscious buyers don't want to spend another few thousands for maintenance and fuel. A used sedan with still cost more to maintain than a new smaller hatchback.

One could buy a used airbag equipped City for 5 lac instead of a Wagon R for example, but whereas a City's service will cost around 6-7000 , a Wagon R will be done in 2-3000. A broken door mirror on a City may cost Rs 4000, a Wagon R's mirror will be around 1200. And older, used car is also likely to require more part replacements being outside warranty, depending on its age and condition.

It's the similar case with buying new sedans in low end/mid variant. That safer ABS+airbag equipped variant is also the one that bundles electric folding mirrors, alloy wheels , etc, that the cost difference goes from Rs 20,000 to Rs 75000 or more.

Honda and Toyota are/were both renowned for quality and durability. Now we have badly put together 4 and 2 wheelers from Honda, unsafe cars from Toyota and Nissan.

It's a dilemma. The more reliable cars (Japanese) are less safe. The safer cars (European) are less reliable. Safety being relative, and remember that safety isn't just crash safety. German cars (VW, Skoda) are overrepresented in terms of cars catching fire, I haven't seen/heard of Japanese cars in flames as much by number or proportion.

Last edited by Ricci : 4th November 2014 at 23:56.
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Old 5th November 2014, 08:54   #44
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

Our plea for Safety heard by government. There will new norm in next year to have all cars equipped with Airbags, ABS, Child Restraints, Seat Belt Reminder etc. in all cars. See the news here

Quote:
Entry level car prices will rise by Rs. 30,000 to Rs. 35,000 from October next year as the government will make it mandatory for all new passenger cars in India to have basic safety features such as air bags, anti-lock braking systems, child restraint systems, seat belt reminders and reinforced body structures.

Prices of lower-end variants of some small and mid-segment cars could also rise by a similar amount once these safety features become the norm.

Road transport and highways secretary Vijay Chhibber told HT that India’s first vehicle safety standard, the India New Car Assessment Programme (NCAP), based on the widely accepted United Nations NCAP, will be notified early next year.

The new NCAP regulations would require manufacturers to reinforce the car’s structure in line with European standards that will enable it to pass frontal and side impact crash tests at 56 kmph. Presently, passenger cars in Indian are equipped to withstand frontal crash tests at 46 kmph. Indian roads are among the most unsafe in the world. Around 140,000 people die in road accidents every year.
http://www.hindustantimes.com/busine...1-1282639.aspx
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Old 5th November 2014, 09:43   #45
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Default re: What safety equipment does your car have?

I think this poll is flawed. It is hard to believe that 2/3rd of cars here have airbags+abs. People driving cars without safety features would refrain from taking the poll itself. Very few would want to admit such things.
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