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Old 12th November 2014, 10:28   #76
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Default Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

Here's my suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars sold here:

As discussed many times, India has a lot of middle class people who can't afford costly cars. They drive 2-wheelers, and may upgrade to an entry level car (assume, costing below 3L ex-showroom) gradually. Cost of ownership is a very very important factor for them. So, enforcing high safety features and driving up the cost of these entry level cars may not be a good idea. That would ensure the safety of car passengers only, and is not considering a lot of 2-wheeler owners waiting to upgrade to a car. So, my suggestion is:

For cars costing up to 3L ex-showroom, no safety features need to be made mandatory, but with an active mechanism to limit the maximum speed to 50 - 60KM. Let the 2-wheelers upgrade to these cars and enjoy the added safety. But a clear metal sticker should be there on the dashboard of these cars to frequently remind the drivers that no safety features are included.

For cars costing between 3L - 4.5L, make simple things like safe structure, crumble zones, shock absorbent materials and bars, seat belts with pretensioners, fog lamps and rear wiper mandatory - it may drive up the ex-showroom cost of these cars by, say, 10%). People buying in this range and above are not 2-wheeler upgrades. They can - and should - afford the extra cost.

For cars costing between 4.5L - 6L ex-showroom, along with the above features, make ABS and dual airbags mandatory.

For cars costing above 6L ex-showroom, along with the above features, make 6 airbags and Tyre Pressure Monitor mandatory. Those buyers are really rich even though they may not agree.

The ex-showroom prices vary between cities. So, for reference purpose, we can select one city (say, Delhi - the capital) when considering the above ex-showroom prices).
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Old 12th November 2014, 10:43   #77
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

A good thought certainly. Obviously auto and law makers will find plenty work arounds. I'd like to suggest a few tweaks

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Originally Posted by romeomidhun View Post
For cars costing up to 3L ex-showroom, no safety features need to be made mandatory, but with an active mechanism to limit the maximum speed to 50 - 60KM. Let the 2-wheelers upgrade to these cars and enjoy the added safety. But a clear metal sticker should be there on the dashboard of these cars to frequently remind the drivers that no safety features are included.
This "governor" may not really make much of a difference. A car governed at 60kph on lets say an e-way is actually more hazardous. Also, a car it at risk even if it is stationary - when a vehicle coming from opposite direction loses control. In addition, safety features should be available as optional for the buyers who want them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by romeomidhun View Post
For cars costing between 3L - 4.5L, make simple things like safe structure, crumble zones, shock absorbent materials and bars, seat belts with pretensioners, fog lamps and rear wiper mandatory - it may drive up the ex-showroom cost of these cars by, say, 10%). People buying in this range and above are not 2-wheeler upgrades. They can - and should - afford the extra cost.
Rear wiper can be done away with - but please, make LHS ORVM mandatory. It is mandatory on 2 wheerlers but not on Cars.

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For cars costing above 6L ex-showroom, along with the above features, make 6 airbags and Tyre Pressure Monitor mandatory. Those buyers are really rich even though they may not agree.
We cannot simply link it to the ex-showroom price. How exactly to have all these features in lets say, the THAR or the Gypsy?
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Old 12th November 2014, 10:55   #78
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

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Also, a car it at risk even if it is stationary - when a vehicle coming from opposite direction loses control.
Great point - and probably the OP might want to distinguish between active safety features being omitted/optional, while passive safety must be mandatory.

On a related note, I see that there's a lot of focus on cars/two wheelers, and not enough focus on yellow boards. To get the ball rolling on safety for yellow-board vehicles, here's one suggestion:
Mandatory TPMS for any goods vehicle.
I know that the TPMS alerts are most likely to be ignored by the operators of these vehicles. However, in the case of an accident/breakdown, if the police find that the TPMS was not green, they can book the driver/owner for negligent driving.
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Old 12th November 2014, 10:57   #79
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

I propose a simple feature here in all cars. Until all occupants have worn seat belts; car won't start.

And I beg to differ, safety features should be absent in entry level cars. Putting up a sticker is not going to help either as anyways these cars can't go beyond 60 km/hr. What if someone bangs into these cars at much higher speeds?

Crumple zones, properly defined safety norms on the lines of NCAP irrespective of car price, ABS + 2 Airbags should be standard.

No doubt the prices will go up but IMHO in the interest of safety, people who can afford these features should only drive the car.

Last edited by StepUP! : 12th November 2014 at 10:59.
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Old 12th November 2014, 11:05   #80
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

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I propose a simple feature here in all cars. Until all occupants have worn seat belts; car won't start.
This is a two sided coin that you minted. In an emergency situation this may be a hindrance. For example when one (and especially more than one) is trying to save life and escape from some unfortunate situation. Trust me - anything can happen.

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No doubt the prices will go up but IMHO in the interest of safety, people who can afford these features should only drive the car.
True indeed. But nobody will like this idea. Most people somehow believe in being "entitled" to something rather than being "responsible" to get it.
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Old 12th November 2014, 11:09   #81
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

Instead of charging excise on the basis of length of the car, it could be on the basis of safety features provided in the car. Secondly, other cosmetic features like HU, DRL etc could be made optional. ( by cosmetic what I mean is features which do not enhance the safety aspect of the car). Those who still need them, can get it in the after market or from the manufacturer by paying extra.
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Old 12th November 2014, 11:26   #82
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

The first suggestion would be that the govt should practice what they preach (especially the guy heading the road and transport ministry). They have plans to have airbags in all cars, stiffer fines, etc. but what's the point of having half a dozen airbags and not being buckled up. The first and foremost thing they should do IMHO is see to it that people follow these basic rules. Once people do get a lesson or two on common sense, then we can explain how and why airbags etc. are essential. Since they plan to implement it in Oct 2015, they should use the next 1 year to educate the common man.
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Old 12th November 2014, 11:55   #83
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

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Originally Posted by Reinhard View Post
This is a two sided coin that you minted. In an emergency situation this may be a hindrance. For example when one (and especially more than one) is trying to save life and escape from some unfortunate situation. Trust me - anything can happen.
I didn't get you. Can you elaborate?
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Old 12th November 2014, 11:58   #84
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

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I didn't get you. Can you elaborate?
You'll call me a pessimist for this, but say 2-3 people are trying to escape from bad elements of the society in an emergency. Robbers for example. The vics get into car and it wastes 10 seconds before starting because the rear passenger didn't fasten seat belt. Just a hypothetical example.


On the other hand - many people will find it annoying and permanently fasten the seat belts and sit ON them (like many cabbies already do).
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Old 12th November 2014, 12:07   #85
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

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Originally Posted by Reinhard View Post
You'll call me a pessimist for this, but say 2-3 people are trying to escape from bad elements of the society in an emergency. Robbers for example. The vics get into car and it wastes 10 seconds before starting because the rear passenger didn't fasten seat belt. Just a hypothetical example.


On the other hand - many people will find it annoying and permanently fasten the seat belts and sit ON them (like many cabbies already do).
ha ha! I find these cases amusing
Going by this logic keyless entry and engine start/stop button should also be made mandatory as they save on time!

And for people who are always behind flouting rules and take pride in bypassing such safety features will eventually pay the price. No need to waste brains/money/energy on such fools. Sad part is sometimes some innocent has to pay price when at no fault
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Old 12th November 2014, 12:18   #86
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

Long back when I used to drive a Maruti Zen, a major problem faced was the lack of LHS ORVM and the RHS one often getting misaligned due to some idiot two wheeler grazing against it.

The solution I found was to get a wide IRVM and fix it over the existing one. Now I had a superb view and didn't have to worry so much.

The IRVM in many cars don't give a wide enough view and the manufacturers have to improve this.

Some have also complained on too light a steering, such as on an i20, a safety issue.
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Old 12th November 2014, 12:31   #87
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

I don't agree with the OP. Speed governors, especially when applied at low speeds can be dangerous. Imagine a situation where the driver is driving at 60 and speed is being restricted by the governor. What if the car in front brakes hard or another vehicle comes in front of the car. May be the only way out is to accelerate hard and move away from the danger rather than relying on stopping. This is a very real scenario and a governor will cause more harm here than good.

Don't get me wrong, I am not opposed to governors. By all means put in a governor that does not allow a car to speed over 140 (or whatever is appropriate) but governor at lower speeds is dangerous.

Also, as other pointed out, you need not be the one causing the accident. You could be a victim. Don't you need airbags in that case?

Also, making seat belts mandatory to start the car is not practical. What can be done is to have seat belt warning for all occupied seats. There could be a simple weight sensor to figure out which seats are occupied. This type of sensor is already used for passenger airbags. The seat belt warning needs to be a really irritating buzz rather than a sweet chime and should get progressively louder and sharper as you keep driving and ignoring it.

If you want to keep the costs down, get rid of the AC and front power windows that many low-end cars come with these days. Manufacturers can come up with innovative ways to keeps costs down - but safety features including AirBags and ABS should be mandatory on ALL cars. ABS should be mandatory on bikes too.
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Old 12th November 2014, 12:48   #88
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

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Originally Posted by Reinhard View Post
A car governed at 60kph on lets say an e-way is actually more hazardous.
Correct. But there should be slow lanes in highways also.

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Originally Posted by Reinhard View Post
Also, a car it at risk even if it is stationary - when a vehicle coming from opposite direction loses control.
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Originally Posted by torque!! View Post
Also, as other pointed out, you need not be the one causing the accident. You could be a victim. Don't you need airbags in that case?
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Originally Posted by StepUP! View Post
What if someone bangs into these cars at much higher speeds?
Yes, but we can't consider or escape from all kinds scenarios, isn't it? Consider a tree falling on a car, or a land mine explodes. I have not heard about roof/floor airbags.

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Originally Posted by torque!! View Post
Speed governors, especially when applied at low speeds can be dangerous. Imagine a situation where the driver is driving at 60 and speed is being restricted by the governor. What if the car in front brakes hard or another vehicle comes in front of the car. May be the only way out is to accelerate hard and move away from the danger rather than relying on stopping. This is a very real scenario and a governor will cause more harm here than good.
Hard accelaration may be needed to avoid a collission during an unsafe over taking, but not any other situation, I guess. When the vehicle at front hard brakes, we would either hard brake, or drive sideways with same / reduced speed but not by accelarating, I guess.


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Originally Posted by Reinhard View Post
In addition, safety features should be available as optional for the buyers who want them.
...
make LHS ORVM mandatory.
Agree 100%.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reinhard View Post
We cannot simply link it to the ex-showroom price. How exactly to have all these features in lets say, the THAR or the Gypsy?
True. Exclude soft toppers from the 6-airbag constraint.

Quote:
Originally Posted by StepUP! View Post
Putting up a sticker is not going to help either as anyways these cars can't go beyond 60 km/hr.
Unsafe driving doesn't always mean high speeds - there are lot more: sudden track changes, insuficient braking distance, unsafe overtaking...

Last edited by romeomidhun : 12th November 2014 at 13:03.
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Old 12th November 2014, 12:54   #89
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

Good thread romeomidhun. However, like others, I too beg to differ.
The most basic model of all cars should also come with the entire safety kit (dual airbags with ABS). How manufacturers cut costs to make it on par is something they already know about. If you refer to the base UK model of swift, it doesn't even come with an A/C but the safety kit is good

Left ORVM should be mandatory along with a minimum size for both IRVM and ORVM based on the size / segment of the vehidle. Excise duty should be reduced to match to the safety features - more the safety features, less the excise duty. Auto-door unlock on impact should also be compulsory.

Cheers!
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Old 12th November 2014, 13:07   #90
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

- Structural rigidity and crumble zones should be highly prioritized. Doesn't matter if you have airbags if the outer casing can't take a knock.

- Ban Bull-Bars/Guards on Roads.

- ABS should be standard. It's 2014 already.

- Incorporate Street safety, road manners, and Driving training in Schools properly.


Don't think there needs to be a cost revision specifically for this. If people can't afford new cars within their budget, they'd search for old ones, which would help improve the Pre-Owned car maket.
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