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Old 12th November 2014, 13:11   #91
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Default Re: Suggestion to the Indian government about the mandatory safety features in cars

Let us begin by fixing the one thing that affects road safety the most.

The human being.

First step in road safety - put that into school curriculum. Begin with educating the human beings and making them have a safety mindset. Then, ensure that anyone who is in any danger of becoming a bad/unsafe driver does not get a drivers license. And then, if someone is driving without a license, make them walk all the way to their destination after they pay a hefty fine.

Once that ball is rolling, we can start talking about safety features in cars, bikes, trucks, and buses. However, here, I would balk at mandating safety features by law. Yes, that's right, I don't agree with the Western approach of "ABS, ESP, seat belts, 6 airbags, etc etc fitted or else no selling the car here".
Instead, test all vehicles for safety and make the manufacturer prominently publish the test results and safety rating related information at the point of sale to the prospective customer.

Let the customer choose to buy an inherently unsafe car with open eyes. If that is what the mass market wants, well, then they deserve it.
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Old 12th November 2014, 13:50   #92
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Well, the government is starting to take care of car drivers and passengers, but what about the pedestrians and 2 wheeler users on the road?

Also need is good road, proper signalling and pedestrian system along with near perfect licensing and strict enforcing of road rules with stricter penalties for abusers.
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Old 12th November 2014, 17:57   #93
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by KiloAlpha View Post
Let us begin by fixing the one thing that affects road safety the most.

The human being.

First step in road safety - put that into school curriculum. Begin with educating the human beings and making them have a safety mindset. Then, ensure that anyone who is in any danger of becoming a bad/unsafe driver does not get a drivers license. And then, if someone is driving without a license, make them walk all the way to their destination after they pay a hefty fine.

Once that ball is rolling, we can start talking about safety features in cars, bikes, trucks, and buses. However, here, I would balk at mandating safety features by law. Yes, that's right, I don't agree with the Western approach of "ABS, ESP, seat belts, 6 airbags, etc etc fitted or else no selling the car here".
Instead, test all vehicles for safety and make the manufacturer prominently publish the test results and safety rating related information at the point of sale to the prospective customer.

Let the customer choose to buy an inherently unsafe car with open eyes. If that is what the mass market wants, well, then they deserve it.
Completely agree with your first part of the post - education starting from ground up is essential and that should be made mandatory.
However, I don't find anything wrong in mandating basic minimum safety kit in all models. After all, it is in the same spirit that there are regulations on other fronts as well (for instance, not carrying flammable substances on trains / public transport - ok, may not be the perfect example). Given our collective mentality which is driven by cost based purchase decisions, the government should step in with this.

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Originally Posted by Srikanthan View Post
Well, the government is starting to take care of car drivers and passengers, but what about the pedestrians and 2 wheeler users on the road?

Also need is good road, proper signalling and pedestrian system along with near perfect licensing and strict enforcing of road rules with stricter penalties for abusers.
True, I think we all understand that airbags and ABS will be a 'magic wand' solution. Things have to built around this as a framework, a few things I can think of as below.. I am sure there are lot more experts in this forum who can come up with better suggestions:
1. Making the driving licenses short lived ones - the current ones are valid for almost 20 years after issue (or you cross 60 years, whichever is earlier) if I am not wrong. We need to have a 5 year license system post which everyone will be mandated to take up the driving tests again
2. Improve and make the policy of getting licenses more strict - today these are a joke.; and, please, remove corruption
3. Educate, sensitize and make people aware that everyone has the same right to drive on the road. Just because you put a sticker of 'Road King' on your bumper doesn't mean you literally are.
4. Improve infrastructure - better roads, dedicated bike / rick lanes (for god's sake, remove those obscenities which are called speak breakers and replace them with scientific ones - and let's start from Bangalore )
5. Retrofitting - Any safety feature that gets mandated should be made keeping in view that there should be a retrofit option. After all, there would be too many 'unsafe' cars trolling the roads after this regulation is implemented.

As an aside to the more knowledgeable folks here - is retrofitting ABS and airbags possible at all for 4 wheelers?

Cheers!
Void

Last edited by void_001 : 12th November 2014 at 18:02.
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Old 12th November 2014, 20:04   #94
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

"More safety features in cars will mean less road safety" (R C Bhargava, Chaiman, Maruti Suzuki)


Source Link: http://indianexpress.com/article/bus...-maruti-chief/


Quote:
RC Bhargava, chairman of the country’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki, has cautioned the government against falling for any global body’s assertion that safety measures like airbags or disc brakes be made mandatory for all cars, even entry-level ones.

In an interview with FE, Bhargava said recommendations like the recent one from the Global NCAP (New Car Assessment Programme), a private autonomous body, would only expose consumers to more risks. He said that if carmakers incorporate such features in even entry-level cars, obviously the price would go up, which would lead consumers to opt for two-wheelers, which would be more unsafe.

He said that such findings by global autonomous bodies did not take into account Indian conditions and acting on them could be counterproductive.
“The intention should be to reduce road fatalities. Therefore, we have to take a total picture of Indian road issues. If you only take cars, that results in just 3-4% improvement. But this may also do damage somewhere else, because the risk factor of a person driving a two-wheeler is far higher than those driving even old Fiat cars,” he said.

“Are you overall helping or reducing safety? The person who graduates to a car from a two-wheeler is a very marginal guy, a little bit of price increase and he will push the purchase away for the next year. We saw that when the petrol prices went up, these guys could not afford cars,” he added. Though the road ministry has not come forward with any concrete proposal so far, there have been suggestions at the official level to make airbags mandatory in all cars to increase road safety.

Going by current cost estimates, adding two front airbags to an entry-level and the country’s top-selling car like the Alto 800 would add about R30,000 to the starting price of R2.4 lakh. Further, adding an anti-lock braking system, which reduces braking distances especially in wet conditions, will further push the price up by about R10,000.

In the most recent tests conducted this month, Global NCAP tested the Maruti Swift and Datsun Go. In February this year, it had tested the Maruti Suzuki Alto 800, Tata Nano, Ford Figo, Hyundai i10 and Volkswagen Polo. Besides the Polo and Figo, all other cars completely failed the tests. The agency conducts side impact test, where another car hits the target vehicle at 40 kmph, and a frontal offset test at 64 kmph.

“People are talking of car safety and we have about 1.5 lakh road fatalities, therefore cars should be made more safe. None of these people have established any link between the number of deaths and cars. If you actually look at the data, there is huge difference. One point is that in the EU, 50% of the road fatalities are inside cars, but in India it is 16%. This is because two-wheelers and pedestrians are far higher,” Bhargava said. He said that a “commercial angle” is always present in pushing such technologies. “Somebody wants to sell an airbag, what does he do? He pushes the safety angle. Nobody has yet proved that unsafe cars are the reason for higher road fatalities,” he said, adding that most companies now offer airbags in the top variants of all car models, so if buyers drive on highways at higher speeds, they can buy that version.

Incidentally, Global NCAP chairman Max Mosley has also written a letter to Nissan chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn asking the company to withdraw the “substandard” Datsun Go model from India and other markets because its body shell is so unstable that even adding airbags would be pointless.
Bhargava speaks "There’s no linkage in India between road fatalities and unsafe cars Unlike in EU countries where 50% road fatalities are inside cars, in India it is only 16%. There could be a commercial angle in pushing such safety technologies. Such measures can improve road safety by only 3-4%
Features like airbags are offered in higher-end cars."
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Old 12th November 2014, 20:38   #95
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by JoseVijay View Post
"More safety features in cars will mean less road safety" (R C Bhargava, Chaiman, Maruti Suzuki)
What an dork this guy is. Absolutely shamefull, but I guess, he has to protect the industry that made him.

So, it is fine to add alloys, double DIN touch screen head unit, keyless entry, auto wipers and auto headlamps, etc. But if you add safety features, the chap will skip buying a car and buy a bike. What nonsense Mr. Bhargava. There is a reason, for retirement age as one tends to go senile after a certain age. Why don't you sit at home and let the younger generation take control of their destiny, safety & life !!

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Old 12th November 2014, 21:07   #96
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I hope government doesn't listen to insane people like this Maruti higher management. Totally irresponsible statements this Maruti clan is making. Hope to see their brand sink.


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Old 12th November 2014, 23:29   #97
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by void_001 View Post

As an aside to the more knowledgeable folks here - is retrofitting ABS and airbags possible at all for 4 wheelers?

Cheers!
Void
I doubt you can retrofit ABS or airbags into 4 wheelers which were not built to accommodate them.

Going by the government directive, we will soon see older cars piling in junk yards and the next business we can confidently invest is going to be car-breaking.
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Old 13th November 2014, 09:04   #98
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

I don't support this move.

1) The majority don't care about safety. Just because a select few BHPians want it, why should the buyers of VXis and VDis be burdened with the cost of airbags and ABS? Its a free world and they should be allowed to choose how they want to live (or die).

2) Most A and B segment cars are structurally unsafe. In cars like the i10, Swift, Go etc, airbags would add no more value than having two rubber balloons stuck on to the dash.

It would be better if the government take steps to set up an independent crash test facility, rate the cars, and make the manufacturers display the ratings prominently on the car and all advertisements. Buyers then can make an informed decision.
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Old 13th November 2014, 10:06   #99
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by civic-sense View Post
I don't support this move.

1) The majority don't care about safety. Just because a select few BHPians want it, why should the buyers of VXis and VDis be burdened with the cost of airbags and ABS? Its a free world and they should be allowed to choose how they want to live (or die).

2) Most A and B segment cars are structurally unsafe. In cars like the i10, Swift, Go etc, airbags would add no more value than having two rubber balloons stuck on to the dash.

It would be better if the government take steps to set up an independent crash test facility, rate the cars, and make the manufacturers display the ratings prominently on the car and all advertisements. Buyers then can make an informed decision.
100% agreed with you. Enforcing things only helps businesses & makes the non law abiding people find workarounds.

It's us who should be making the calculated and thought out decisions in anything. This is just like helmets. Its an individual's choice as to whether he/she should wear it or not. (I wear it always!)

If the government wants to enforce, it should only enforce that the airbag+ABS should be available as an option for ALL variants, so that the customer isn't forced to buy the insanely costly top trims. If a customer does NOT want airbags - so be it.
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Old 13th November 2014, 10:09   #100
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by 4x4addict View Post
... But if you add safety features, the chap will skip buying a car and buy a bike...
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Originally Posted by raksrules View Post
I hope government doesn't listen to insane people like this Maruti higher management. Totally irresponsible statements this Maruti clan is making. Hope to see their brand sink.
I guess Bhargava's statement is true to some extent. I was just thinking of those lesser fortunate of our society, who somehow manage to collect just enough cash to be able to purchase a 800 LXi or a nano. Even buying a car like Alto 800 could mean someone's year worth of savings. So, in such cases increasing the cost of car with airbags/abs could definitely mean a large bunch of such people not being able to buy it and continuing to use 2 wheelers.
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Old 13th November 2014, 11:55   #101
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Originally Posted by civic-sense View Post
I don't support this move.

1) The majority don't care about safety. Just because a select few BHPians want it, why should the buyers of VXis and VDis be burdened with the cost of airbags and ABS? Its a free world and they should be allowed to choose how they want to live (or die).
This is a very dangerous line of argument. The reason is that whether those idiots choose to live or die does not end with them. It affects the other person as well. Suppose an idiot on a two wheeler without helmet comes in the wrong lane, hits a car and dies, do you think that the life of the car driver will be all peaceful? Same way if two cars meet with an accident and one does not have airbags or any of the safety features and the people in it die, do you think that the other car's driver will be let go off free without any trouble by our legal department or at a psychological level themselves ?

I totally do not buy the argument that people will get back to two wheelers just because they could not afford a car with safety features. How is that even an excuse for high end cars like Swift ? People who cannot afford to buy a base version of Swift with airbags can downgrade to an alto with safety features instead of a two wheeler.

Perhaps, having such strict safety features may create a new market for, cheap, safe two seater cars. So this argument of "people cannot afford safety features and will go back to two wheelers" is imho very wrong and outright evil.
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Old 13th November 2014, 13:24   #102
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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This is a very dangerous line of argument. The reason is that whether those idiots choose to live or die does not end with them. It affects the other person as well. Suppose an idiot on a two wheeler without helmet comes in the wrong lane, hits a car and dies, do you think that the life of the car driver will be all peaceful? Same way if two cars meet with an accident and one does not have airbags or any of the safety features and the people in it die, do you think that the other car's driver will be let go off free without any trouble by our legal department or at a psychological level themselves ?

I totally do not buy the argument that people will get back to two wheelers just because they could not afford a car with safety features. How is that even an excuse for high end cars like Swift ? People who cannot afford to buy a base version of Swift with airbags can downgrade to an alto with safety features instead of a two wheeler.

Perhaps, having such strict safety features may create a new market for, cheap, safe two seater cars. So this argument of "people cannot afford safety features and will go back to two wheelers" is imho very wrong and outright evil.
The government can't and should not babysit every individual.

Every individual has the right to decide what his right for HIM. Even a patient has the right to deny medical treatment or choose the kind of treatment he wants. If somebody decides that he does not need protection via airbags because his creator will protect him, it is his right to believe so, however stupid you might find that.

If the government is going to mandate, who will decide what all should be mandated?

ABS?
ABS + EBD?
ABS + EBD + 2 Airbags?
ABS + EBD + ESP + TCS + 2 Airbags?
ABS + EBD + ESP + TCS + 8 Airbags?

Or just outlaw any car south of the Volvos?

Where are you going to draw the line as to what amount of safety is good enough?

It is a democracy, why let the government choose how you have to live? Choose yourself.
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Old 13th November 2014, 13:40   #103
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Right Mr civic-sense, why have lane divisions, traffic rules, traffic signals, banked turns, properly asphalted roads as well... people will take care of their own safety! why should i be forced to wear seatbelts! Why should i turn on my headlamps at night! Why should i be bothered with pedestrians on roads and not mow them down !why have police, better let everyone buy the biggest gun they can afford! where do you think you live? wild wild west?

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Old 13th November 2014, 13:46   #104
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

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Right Mr civic-sense, why have lane divisions, traffic rules, traffic signals, banked turns, properly asphalted roads as well... people will take care of their own safety! why should i be forced to wear seatbelts! Why should i turn on my headlamps at night! Why should i be bothered with pedestrians on roads and not mow them down !why have police, better let everyone buy the biggest gun they can afford! where do you think you live? wild wild west?
What you mentioned are "assists" & "guidelines". You have the choice of following or not following them. Anyone can always jump a traffic signal. Its the individual's choice. An accident or fine that follows is the result. The cops don't stop you before jumping the signal. They stand under shade around the corner AFTER someone does that. (Not that they can really stop everyone.)

Incidentally, most of the things you mentioned are NOT available or not upto the mark in my part of the world.
Did you not buckle up before it was made mandatory? I did. Without anyone telling me to.

And I'll not get started about the police and the wild west as here only the good people are prohibited from carrying a gun .

PS - I'm not a hardcore opponent of the mandate of ABS and airbag at all. I'm totally fine with it. Just not overjoyed by it per say.

Last edited by Reinhard : 13th November 2014 at 13:57.
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Old 13th November 2014, 13:53   #105
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Default re: Government wants to make Airbags & ABS standard on new cars

Certain things have to be mandated by the government. Otherwise why have even the seat belts or helmets mandatory? In fact why have all the traffic rules at all if there should be the free-will concept for every moron on the road and if every individual is capable of taking the right decision for himself.

Of course the level of safety that has to be mandatory needs thorough brain storming. We must realize Indian car market is evolving - its going forward and the definition of 'basic safety' will also move up with it.

But right now its very clear that car manufacturers have been taken full advantage of practically no safety regulations in India. People buying costly ZXI, ZDI variants of even a so called premium hatch have been cheated as they have got structurally unsafe cars. Safety conscious people have been forced to buy gimmicky stuff just to get airbags. Life saving mundane features like ABS, airbags have deliberately been kept out of reach of many by offering them only on the highest costing model (so that car makers can sell their overpriced accessories with them). Private enterprises do need some checks for the benefit of common man.
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