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Old 6th November 2014, 19:14   #46
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by Soumyajit9 View Post
The prime feature of a higher variant were the safety features. Now the manufacturers would be left with luring customers only with Alloys, ORVM Blinkers, ACC, Roof Rails and Fog Lamps. Can't think of any other major features they can use to lure customers into buying higher variants.
Not all safety features can be mandated. If ABS and dual front airbags are mandated, then higher variants may include additional safety features such as ESP, side/curtain airbags, hill hold, etc. So there can still be a differentiation on the safety front.
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Old 6th November 2014, 19:50   #47
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Here is my 2 cents on this. It is a very welcome move on the part of the government, however, it has to be accompanied by certain regulations or laws.

For e.g. , it is a well known fact that the deployment of airbags is known to be the cause of serious injury or even fatal for children travelling in the front passenger seat. Govt should make it mandatory that children are not allowed to travel in front passenger seats of cars with airbags.

Addition of airbags is going to cause the manufacturers to increase the cost of the vehicle significantly. It is not because of the cost of the airbags but because the manufacturers will have to beef up the car body structure so as to make the car solid enough for the airbags to be deployed effectively. Govt should make this provision as well in their regulation otherwise manufacturers will sell vehicles with airbags on lightly built vehicles. End result will be that even if the airbags get deployed, it will not be as effective. In some cases, the airbags will not get enough time to get deployed.
Another side effect of this will be heavier car and resultant reduction in mileage.

Having said this, many developed countries have made this mandatory long time back so, it is imperative for India to do it.
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Old 6th November 2014, 20:06   #48
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Great move by the Government

The biggest benefit of this move is that all these safety features will be available right from the Base variant. Earlier if we wanted these safety features, we had no option but to go for the top-end variant. Now with this rule in force, we can go for whichever variant we want depending upon the extra features they offer
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Old 6th November 2014, 20:21   #49
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by arnabchak View Post
Lets take things one at a time.

"Ungli pakdaya hain. Haath nahi"
We wait for this implementation and then the next set of demands can come through!!

Just hope that we stick to the timelines and get it implemented in teh first place without any further discrepancies.
I don't disagree, but I believe this discussion needs to go beyond adding bits and pieces. We need a complete review of how we treat surface transportation and safety standards. Like another poster mentioned earlier, an inflating airbag can be fatal to infants being carried in the front passenger's lap in case of an accident, that's just one example of how well-intentioned changes can cause havoc.

I welcome the government's initiative, but also feel the time is right for a holistic review of the situation rather than knee-jerk reactions. If we're going to do something, we might as well do it right and go the whole hog.

Last edited by Chetan_Rao : 6th November 2014 at 20:25.
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Old 7th November 2014, 00:10   #50
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Best news I have heard in a long time!

I did not need that sunroof in my i10 Asta (absolutely of no use other than showoff in India), and could have done without the music system / speakers (could have fitted better after market ones). But I was forced to go for that variant as else I would have lost out on the ABS+ Airbags.

Happy that from a year from now,no frill base models would also be coming with ABS/Airbags/impact sensing seat belts/strengthened impact areas etc.
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Old 7th November 2014, 07:24   #51
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Finally! One of the best things I heard in the car scene in a while. I always wondered why a Rs.20 K car stereo is preferred over life saving airbags and ABS. It's sad that a Govt regulation is required for this action in the Car market than competition shaping these features.
What's perplexed me is that Nissan who pioneered an airbag feature even in entry level hatchback-Micra has launched a "sub-standard' product in the Indian market. Clearly Nissan is making safer products in other segments than Datsun.
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Old 7th November 2014, 08:45   #52
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by blackasta View Post
Best news I have heard in a long time!

I did not need that sunroof in my i10 Asta (absolutely of no use other than showoff in India), and could have done without the music system / speakers (could have fitted better after market ones). But I was forced to go for that variant as else I would have lost out on the ABS+ Airbags.

Happy that from a year from now,no frill base models would also be coming with ABS/Airbags/impact sensing seat belts/strengthened impact areas etc.
I agree with you. I really do not know the purpose of sunroof in India where there is already too much of sunshine to keep away to reduce the load on AC. And, sunroof is a nuisance and people sitting in buses and truck drivers always can have a peek at you from above and your privacy in your car is that much reduced.
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Old 7th November 2014, 09:57   #53
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by blackasta View Post
Best news I have heard in a long time!

Happy that from a year from now,no frill base models would also be coming with ABS/Airbags/impact sensing seat belts/strengthened impact areas etc.

I was waiting for the day I'd see base models with airbags/ABS. I dont need the bells and whistles that come with safety features and I always felt customers are taken for a ride forcing them to go for the top end models just to get the safety features.

I am for the base model any day with rock solid build quality and Airbags+ABS!! End of the day, we need to get the priorities right in car features!!
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Old 7th November 2014, 11:21   #54
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

I agree this maybe a step in the right direction. However, not having seen the actual regulations or the proposed regulations, I do not know whether they would state that the car should have airbags or whether it should have a minimum of two. I hope the regs say minimum of two, because otherwise the manufacturers would just provide one.

Also, I would prefer the regs specify that cars "sold" or "registered" on or after Oct 1, 2015 shall be compliant with the regs (instead of saying cars "introduced" after Oct 2015).

Coming to the topic of how trim levels might be differentiated, the following come to mind:

1. Steel vs. alloy wheels
2. Smaller wheels vs. larger wheels
3. Fewer vs. more speakers for the audio system
4. Low-end vs. high-end audio system
5. Manual vs. automatic transmission
6. Smaller capacity vs. larger capacity engines
7. Manual vs. electric windows
8. Cloth vs. leather upholstery
9. Black vs. body-coloured vs. chrome door handles
10. Non-foldable vs. fully foldable vs. 60-40 split foldable rear seats
11. Foglamps
&c.

My contention is that safety features should not form part of trim-level selection. Basic mandatory safety features according to me are:

1. At least 4 air-bags, if not 6
2. Disc brakes all around
3. ABS, EBD & ESC
4. Bright and properly aligned headlamps
5. LATCH (system to secure child-seats in the back-seat of the car). It should be made illegal to carry a child younger than 12 years (and of a certain minimum height) in the front seat.

Yes, I know this is a pipe-dream when it comes to India, and yes, I also know I am preaching to the choir when it comes to certain members; but I have noticed many other members here who still prefer to eschew safety features in favour of bling, and I am saddened by it.

Cheers
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Old 7th November 2014, 11:34   #55
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by tilt View Post
My contention is that safety features should not form part of trim-level selection. Basic mandatory safety features according to me are:

1. At least 4 air-bags, if not 6
2. Disc brakes all around
3. ABS, EBD & ESC
4. Bright and properly aligned headlamps
5. LATCH (system to secure child-seats in the back-seat of the car). It should be made illegal to carry a child younger than 12 years (and of a certain minimum height) in the front seat.
For me, the first thing I would be looking in a car is a well engineered structure which has got thoughtfully placed crumple zones and sufficient head rooms all around to absorb the force of impact, then the car should perform better during crash tested.

Rest of the things are secondary which don't matter if the structure itself is poor.

And no, I am not the one who argue in favor of thicker sheet metal or lot of weight in the car.

Most of the cars sold in India don't even have proper structural components so making the ABS and Airbags mandatory won't change anything. First we need a crash testing body like Euro, Global NCAP which tests all the cars for crash worthiness.

Last edited by tbppjpr : 7th November 2014 at 11:36.
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Old 7th November 2014, 11:41   #56
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by tilt View Post
Coming to the topic of how trim levels might be differentiated, the following come to mind:

1. Steel vs. alloy wheels
2. Smaller wheels vs. larger wheels
3. Fewer vs. more speakers for the audio system
4. Low-end vs. high-end audio system
5. Manual vs. automatic transmission
6. Smaller capacity vs. larger capacity engines
7. Manual vs. electric windows
8. Cloth vs. leather upholstery
9. Black vs. body-coloured vs. chrome door handles
10. Non-foldable vs. fully foldable vs. 60-40 split foldable rear seats
11. Foglamps
&c.
I agree with most of your views. However, it certainly will be a bit of a juggling time for the auto makers to justify the higher price of higher trim levels. And, I think in some cases they'll even end up selling single trim cars - especially at the economy end.

Today the higher trims cost upwards of 1.5 to 2L more than the base/mid trims in most cases. I feel most of the current top trim prospective buyers will not find the chrome handles, higher end ICE, more speakers, and upholstery worth the difference. Fact is, ALL these can be purchased at much lower prices and more to our tastes from the after-market stores.

The primary reason to go for the top trim is always the integral parts of the car that are best fitted at the factory level and not after-market. So will I pay the 1.5L difference for a rear wiper + demister is the question

As for the higher/lower capacity engines - I feel our market isn't yet matured enough to handle that. Its driven by the masses still & having different capacity engines in the hatchback segment for example will not make much of a difference. The higher capacity engine car will suddenly get costlier and end up in a territory of segments above which already give that higher power engine. It may make a difference for a handful enthusiasts (like us bhpians for instance) who'll love a 1.6L hot-hatch. But the auto-makers have proven time and again that niche customers is not what they are in Indian market for.

Power windows - well almost all cars already have that "feature" from base models now a days. Taking it away now - will it really make much of a business sense? And again - this can be added aftermarket.

Last edited by Reinhard : 7th November 2014 at 11:52.
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Old 7th November 2014, 11:58   #57
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Finally, India is waking up to the safety call, the announcement by the government is certainly a welcome first step, we now need to see this implemented in letter and Spirit. With safety equipment being made mandatory, we can look forward to having the trims and variants that are offered in developed countries being offered here.

There is plenty that can be offered beyond basic set of safety equipment such as ABS, 2 Airbags and seat belts for differentiating higher trims

More Airbags, Traction Control, Cruise Control, , Multizone climate controls, headlamp wipers, Rain Sensors, Keyless entry, Built in GPS trackers and Satnav, Auto Transmission, More powerful engine, Reverse Cameras, alloys, All round disc brakes, Leather upholstery, Day Night ORVM's, Rear and Window Defoggers, Xenon Headlamps, Fog Lamps, Moon Roof, ICE, the list is quite big, so we need not worry about any manufacturer ending up offering only one trim just because they are asked to build safe cars

If there is anything we need to be worried about - it is how far and with what degree of tenacity this path will be pursued.
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Old 7th November 2014, 22:29   #58
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I foresee a lot of new cars being "launched" just before Oct 2015, so that they can maintain a lower price and get the two year relief from upgrading.....just saying.
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Old 7th November 2014, 23:50   #59
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by pamiboy View Post
I foresee a lot of new cars being "launched" just before Oct 2015, so that they can maintain a lower price and get the two year relief from upgrading.....just saying.
While it might look lucrative to manufacturers on initial glance, launching a model that can only stay in the market for a maximum of 2 years is certainly not going to be sufficient to recover the costs. 2 years is assuming customers are not aware of how flawed the safety of that model is, or find some other strong reason to overlook these flaws and still buy it.

If the model can be made adhering to the safety standards with minimal additional investment, I don't see any reason for desperately launching a less safe version by Sep 2015 when they can launch a safe model in another few months.

Given how this could play out, once we get our own crash testing facilities, there is every chance someone (even the competitors indirectly) might fund the tests for existing best seller models to generate awareness among customers. If that happens and the model is not good enough, there is every chance the customers would look at a better option from then on, reducing the 2-year period effectively.
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Old 9th November 2014, 00:22   #60
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Finally, some sense prevails and steps are being taken to improve road and vehicles safety. Its a shame that till now our automobile manufacturers were happy to turn a blind eye to value of human life. In this day and age, it's just beyond belief that valuable human lives are lost even as the technology to make things safer exists at an affordable price.

Just 24 hours back, yesterday the same issue was being discussed in one of the other threads and same recommendations were being given - that the only way to make quick and significant improvements is for the government to step in and make ABS and airbags mandatory. That this news break has come within 24 hours is unbelievable.

I guess now its all about implementation and how strongly the newly formed or to be formed regulations are enforced in the future. It's high time India did something about road safety and this is certainly an excellent move, even if only on paper as yet. Through this welcome move, government has finally started to truly play its bigger role - that of a regulator and promoter of general public good than just being a mute spectator. 10/10 so far.
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