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Old 17th November 2014, 18:17   #181
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Originally Posted by alpha1 View Post
1) All I am saying is that first time buyers of inexpensive vehicles usually stretch their budgets.

2) So again, my point is not at all about what should be the "minimum standard".
And neither is this thread about it
1) Agreed. The whole safety thing should be tweaked at this point. We have been there in 2007 while purchasing our first new car. So, I understand this thing first hand.
2) I do believe these tests are about a perceived minimum safety requirement. And obviously, there is a trade off. Its more of a common sense issue. Obviously we would want reasonable safety. So 56 or 64 kmph (hypothetical, data would tell optimum speed) should be good enough as majority of impacts in our cars would lie below this threshold (assuming braking also) though people drive at higher speeds.
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Old 17th November 2014, 18:18   #182
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

What is most disappointing about Maruti is that they have set the Benchmark in the Indian Auto Industry so low that we are on a negative spiral with respect to safety and quality:(

Success of Maruti Alto has inspired other payers to introduce sub standard products to Indian customers like Datsun Go!!

The B segment sheet metal keeps getting thinner and the trend is now penetrating in higher segments as well (I know the sheet metal vs good structure discussion, I would like to be in a Palio rather than an Amaze).
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Old 17th November 2014, 18:37   #183
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by 2000rpm View Post
.....

High power cars with poor braking and insufficient tyres cause equal (if not more) threat to me on road!!! If the government cant ensure adherence to driving rules, it should atleast try to minimize the damage caused by the failure to do so.
Other points you made were not in context I believe and I will ignore, but power v/s braking efficiency is interesting.

Are there any norms suggesting car with X BHP and Y Torque should have certain size of tire and specific size of discs/drums.
Yes, weight of vehicle, road condition, condition of tire and so many other parameters will affect the braking force. But is there any norm available for braking force anywhere, and also do any of the existing crash standard include braking force OR adequacy of braking means v/s engine power as one of the parameter for safety.

Following two, though they are class leaders in their their respective categories, are case in discussion for arguably 'inadequate' braking :

1. Honda city - yes the latest one has tires that compete with Karina Kapoor for size Zero. People have already discussed that ride and handling affected due to thin tires, but are they good enough to provide sufficient braking for 115 BHP engine?

2. Toyota Fortuner - vehicle costing in vicinity of 25 lacs, being sold with rear drums! And if I remember correctly, there were recalls of initial batches of Fortuner and braking system components were replaced.

So, how fair it is to put Maruti only on spot and criticize them just because they are being candid and openly admit cost cutting/fuel efficiency. While their Japanese cousins, even after charging premium get away with offering substandard braking components?

Last point - is ABS a substitute of a poorly designed braking system ( smaller disc/drums, thinner tires, etc)

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Old 17th November 2014, 18:52   #184
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by gthang View Post
Safety of life IS paramount. Responsibility for it does not belong to the car manufacturer.
What a joke! Responsibility is on both manufacturers as well as users. Else govt can allow non ISI marked electrical appliances, can allow older and less stringent airport security (with useless logic lessening the security will decrease the cost and make airways affordable to lakhs of other who would otherwise use trains and bus etc). This logic can be used in almost all walks of life.
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Old 17th November 2014, 18:56   #185
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by 2000rpm View Post
Would you also call playing Loud speakers at midnight as free will. This is not just about others, it also affects us.

Going by the same logic, in a democracy, I shouldn't be restricted to carrying 5 people in my sedan as it can certainly carry more!! Who is the government to restrict that?

One should also be allowed to drive after drinking, as one has the right to choose how much safety one wants in a democracy! Why the farce of strict breath checking on weekend nights which convert traffic policemen to millionaires?

High power cars with poor braking and insufficient tyres cause equal (if not more) threat to me on road!!! If the government cant ensure adherence to driving rules, it should atleast try to minimize the damage caused by the failure to do so.
You are looking at it the wrong way. I was saying about the legal way of things. All you have mentioned is the extreme illegals. I can quote a few examples myself but would risk an infraction.

I don't think my car not having Airbags/ABS is going to affect a third person in anyway. For that matter, we should avoid Bull bars since it hampers pedestrian safety. Otherwise the absence of safety equipments in my car is only going to affect me. It should be a choice I should be informed about and taken by me consciously.

From what I can see in the websites, it is mentioned very clearly as to what each equipment does. So the buyer can take an informed decision if he wishes.

Understand the limits of the car and your limits as a driver. That will be the first line of defense in any case.
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Old 17th November 2014, 19:16   #186
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by extreme_torque View Post
The statements like these do not make me sad, I am infuriated. The only thing they are good at doing is making an appliance at the lowest cost possible and reap the profits. No offense to the future or past owners of the car in question but buying a swift went from cool to hideously uncool in top gear parallance. It tells you how much you with your own safety and your dear ones.
+1 to this.. I mean, I was seriously contemplating Swift Desize for the replacement for my Santro. But now whats the difference between "new to be launched" swift desize and an old 15 years old Santro on safety front, when I want automatic transmission?
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Old 17th November 2014, 21:05   #187
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

I said this in the accidents thread...
We require all the safety features that technology and engineering can provide to drive in the Mad Traffic on our roads. His mention of stating that people driving on the Highways can buy the high end which comes with all the safety mechanisms is not correct, especially for a person from the automobile industry. If he does not believe in it, how does he expect a lay person or his sales persons to understand.

A few queries with regards to his statement wrt cost/commercials on Base Cars:
1.Why conform to emission rules (Euro / Bharat)
2.Why have catcons on these cars
3.Are these base cars, speed locked. The speed limit on most city roads is 40kms, so ideally they should be locked below that. But their earlier Alto 800 can easily do 120 kmph, which could be really dangerous not only to the driver/owner but also to other road users
4. Why not make other things like power windows or other accessories optional, to allow the cost to be tailored depending on the buyer. And for users who do not opt for safety mechanisms, should have their speed limited to 40kmph

With regards to my decisions on buying, I opted for SX4 over Honda City (when SX4 first introduced it), and AStar ZXI over Alto K10. In both my cases they were my favorites, esp the Honda City. Also when I bought the AStar, I really did not like the shape of it, compared to an Alto K10.

Agree there are more issues that need to be fixed, but these regulations should also be in place. These days though we have de-tuned engines, they are still lethal killing machines in the wrong hands/place, and every bit helps.

Last edited by raghu.t.k : 17th November 2014 at 21:10.
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Old 17th November 2014, 21:28   #188
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

I think cars without ABS, airbags put others on risk as well:
  • Car without ABS looses control in emergency braking situation and possibility of accident increases by many folds and this could be fatal for both car occupants and others on road.
  • Incase of major accident, airbag can save a life and this saves the driver of other vehicle also from many legal problems.
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Old 17th November 2014, 22:13   #189
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by civic-sense View Post
If Maruti wanted to sell a substandard one here they should have named it "Swift Substandard" so that many of us could have made an informed decision.

I don't think all those unsuspecting Swift customers bought those substandard Swifts out of free will knowing what they are getting. I wonder why no Swift owner has not sued them.
I agree with you Civic sense, I'm one of those Swift buyers who thought I was buying a premium hatch of a model that was sold in developed countries and hence was a safe car. Safe as in passing crash tests and having crumple zones which would ensure the safety of me and my fellow passengers. I now know this was False, but I will not sue Maruti because I know our Indian legal system. I am confident that I will not get justice in my lifetime and hence I will cut my losses, sell my car, and move onto a hopefully safer car. But wait, which is a safer car? I don't really know since crash ratings are not yet mandatory in India. So I hope and pray that things change and crash testing becomes mandatory.

Forget this whole pathetic argument about the costs associated with making a safer car, I first want transparent norms in deciding which car is safe. If that comes into effect, Maruti and the other players will undoubtedly fall in line.
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Old 17th November 2014, 22:22   #190
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

First of all its the statement made by someone at a very responsible position which triggered this discussion. The specific statements are being discussed, not his personal life. When people comment on his statements and outlook, I don't think there is any violation of rules of the forum, especially for such a statement which is misleading.

Secondly if he is saying that providing additional safety features like airbags and ABS would deter customers upgrading from a 2 wheeler from the cost POV, that should be applicable only to the model priced the lowest (which would be in the wish list of some one upgrading from a bike). Even then, providing these as options would make better sense so that it is left to the customer to choose even at that level. May be that is a second or third car in the house and might belong to someone who can afford safety too. However, coming to the core point of discussion, omitting these features in a car priced much higher like the swift cannot be justified with his statement. A biker upgrading to car is not going to be discouraged in this case. So his point does not count for any model other than the lowest priced one right. Then why is there so much aggression and argument on this thread? Can someone justify his logic in that comment with respect to omission of such safety features in a higher priced car like swift? The explanation he gave (with regard to a biker upgrading to car and thus safer) does not make sense when any car priced higher than their entry level cars fail tests.

Then finally, talking about commercial angle of NCAP. When he gives out statements which don't even make sense (except for an entry level model), when a higher priced model (beyond the scope of a biker upgrading to car) is stripped out to lower price to sell volumes as compared to the same model on sale elsewhere, which other angle is he talking from? It is all commercial only and there is no other angle to it. That is why there are safety norms and quality standards set in every industry. Otherwise everything could be bypassed for highest of commercial benefits. Pointing fingers at each other is not the future but improving standards IS... quality wise, safety wise, environmental protection wise and efficiency wise. There is no going down in these aspects if any company has any vision for tomorrow.

These things are applicable to all makers and not just Maruti. But Maruti tops the list as of now as their concept of safety is made very clear.

Last edited by ajaypjayaraj : 17th November 2014 at 22:25. Reason: Typo
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Old 17th November 2014, 22:52   #191
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

One thing people are neglecting is the cascading effect of taxation our own government imposes on cars coming out of the factory, when speaking of the unnecessary add-ons manufacturers charge us with , in order to have ABS and airbags in our car.

Consider this : a Bosch senior exec stated airbags can be provided as little as INR 6000 each. Let's say that's optimistic, and there are other things that need to be factored in to fit airbags and make them operable in a car dashboard (the sensors, electrical circuitry and labor cost). Let's assume all this amounts to INR 25000 for 2 airbags.

A car is charged with excise as ex-factory. Then there are state-specific charges levied by state government, and even city-specific charges by local government. That INR 25000 at the factory, gets inflated to around INR 45000 by the time it reaches the showroom. This applies not only to airbags, but also music systems, alloy wheels, which are significant by proportion to total cost.

These are also items that can be done at the dealer end, thus omitted as factory fitment. Yes, so can airbags - but it is better off done at the factory, for a components so critical, isn't it ? The rest of the whiz-bang gizmos , alloy wheels, audio syspect , sat-nav , chrome bits can be fitted at the dealer, saving a lot on taxed price-inflation.
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Old 17th November 2014, 22:59   #192
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

Apologies... this moves so fast that all I can do is pick a post here and there to read and reply.

In geberal, the argument, "Why want safe cars when buildings, lift shafts, wells, cliffs, fire, cyclones, water, beeches, poisons, fireworks, explosives, trees, tigers, dogs... and so on, are not safe? Why not talk about them?" Is one that a lot of people seem to waste a lot of keystrokes on. It's an argument not even worth arguing with.
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Originally Posted by naveenroy View Post
Getting back to the topic on hand, what scares me most is this - people will say "The Maruti boss says all safety testing is a sham. We don't need any safety features if we drive slowly". And believe it too. THAT scares me most.
Well, it would be ok if they actually did drive slowly. Say, 5-10kmph. But everyone would have to do the same, and, in reality, nobody would.
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Old 18th November 2014, 02:45   #193
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by gthang View Post
Actually, yeah, it is quite funny. Care to tell me how many deaths were due to airbag activation without seatbelt usage? Or improper panic braking due to unfamiliarity with ABS? You're right. No point at all. Airbags and ABS saves lives. Period. End of discussion.

Cheers
I'm sure someone might have replied earlier to this, but i found such reasoning quite funny. Well as on today on most cars ABS + Airbag combo is optional and costs atleast 50K extra. Someone pays that extra cash and sits without the seat belt and drives fast enough to crash and get killed by the Airbag! I paid extra for the airbag, and I belt up unless I am parking my car or driving in a basement etc. Furthermore, I thought the Airbags dont deploy if we are not buckled up, i could be wrong.

Panic Braking due to ABS ? Isn't the purpose of ABS to aide in case of Panic Breaking ? the Toyota user manual says to hit the brake pedal as had as one can in case of emergency stop, What else happens during panic breaking ?
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Old 18th November 2014, 09:09   #194
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by Lalvaz View Post
I now know this was False, but I will not sue Maruti because I know our Indian legal system.
We have a sad legal system; if it was in the US, class action suits would have ensured that Maruti has filed for bankruptcy.
Quote:
I am confident that I will not get justice in my lifetime and hence I will cut my losses, sell my car, and move onto a hopefully safer car. But wait, which is a safer car? I don't really know since crash ratings are not yet mandatory in India. So I hope and pray that things change and crash testing becomes mandatory.
For sure Maruti is not alone in this, but at least two cars (Polo and Figo) passed the GNCAP structural integrity test. I think it is safe to extrapolate that to the Vento, Rapid, Fiesta and (probably) the Ecosport.

I hope GNCAP would continue testing other cars available here.
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Old 18th November 2014, 09:20   #195
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by JLS View Post

Following two, though they are class leaders in their their respective categories, are case in discussion for arguably 'inadequate' braking :

1. Honda city - yes the latest one has tires that compete with Karina Kapoor for size Zero. People have already discussed that ride and handling affected due to thin tires, but are they good enough to provide sufficient braking for 115 BHP engine?

2. Toyota Fortuner - vehicle costing in vicinity of 25 lacs, being sold with rear drums! And if I remember correctly, there were recalls of initial batches of Fortuner and braking system components were replaced.

So, how fair it is to put Maruti only on spot and criticize them just because they are being candid and openly admit cost cutting/fuel efficiency. While their Japanese cousins, even after charging premium get away with offering substandard braking components?

Last point - is ABS a substitute of a poorly designed braking system ( smaller disc/drums, thinner tires, etc)

Regards,

JLS
A safety equipment cant cover for poor design, would an airbag be effective in an Omni?

That said, wouldnt a car with thin tyres, stop better with an ABS as it minimizes the most important limitation of thinner tyres i.e. skidding under heavy breaking?

Also anyone criticizing Maruti doesnt mean that they are supporting other manufacturers for the same mistakes. Maruti is getting the flak because their leadership has come out with a statement which shows lack of any concern for safety. Honda and Toyota have not done that so far, if they do, they will attract similar publicity.

I particularly think Suzuki is to blame is (as mentioned in my earlier post) because it is the Leader!! They have set such poor benchmarks that other manufacturers have followed suit.
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