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Old 29th November 2014, 20:56   #286
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If Government Asks, Maruti Suzuki Ready To Change Safety Features

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After Maruti Suzuki's popular hatchback Swift failed the recent Global NCAP crash test, the company today said it is ready to upgrade safety standards if asked to do so by the government.

While interacting with reporters during the AutoShow Gujarat 2014 here at Mahatma Mandir, Executive Director of Maruti Suzuki India Ltd, R S Kalsi said the company is following all safety norms set by the government at present.

"The crash test was carried out as per the international standards, while we follow safety norms laid out in India. We are meeting all the requirements related to car safety in India. However, we are also willing to change if government asks us to do so," said Kalsi.
SOURCE: http://auto.ndtv.com/news/id-705737

So now the ball as per this guy is in Government's court. All laws prescribed by the GOI is being followed by Maruti Suzuki hence they are not supposed to be held responsible for the failure of Swift in the NCAP test.

What are they trying to prove and what are they trying to communicate here?! :banghead:

Anurag.

Last edited by a4anurag : 29th November 2014 at 20:59.
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Old 29th November 2014, 23:27   #287
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by a4anurag View Post
What are they trying to prove and what are they trying to communicate here?!
Very simple to guess after series of statements from different sides and the guess is - they are not going to change anything, atleast not in near future or not in current generation of their car models.

Maruti's confidence makes it feel like cards have been played and things have been settled. Looks like no concrete reformation in regulations is going to take place in near future.

I wish and hope that I am proven wrong here.
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Old 30th November 2014, 13:51   #288
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by a4anurag View Post
If Government Asks, Maruti Suzuki Ready To Change Safety Features

So now the ball as per this guy is in Government's court.

What are they trying to prove and what are they trying to communicate here?! :banghead:
Isn't that expected from a company that many years back was forced by the courts to upgrade from carb to MPFI engines?

Even if they do change the feature's, I hope it will not be just addition of ABS & Airbags. The real problem here is about structural integrity. They have to fix that first.

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Old 30th November 2014, 16:07   #289
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

So Maruti's current standpoint amounts to

We'll make our cars safer if we are told to.

There is such a thing as hard commercial reality, but there is also such a thing as common humanity.

The only thing I can say is that this guy is, at least, blunt, rather than indulging in nonsense-wordy management/marketing spin.
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Old 30th November 2014, 16:15   #290
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post

We'll make our cars safer if we are told to.

... or if you customers stop buying my unsafe cars !

Clearly, the onus is not on them is what he is communicating !
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Old 30th November 2014, 16:35   #291
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Even without Maruti saying so, wasn't it evident, when they exported Swift with safer structure while selling a less safer one here. Wasn't that saying out loud enough for people to understand that "we supply safety to that level only as demanded by authorities of respective markets"? It was already being expressed by action all this while. This is true for other makers too. Now Maruti just admitted the same by words. Govt. should revise/improve safety standard criteria and this non-sense wouldn't even have to be discussed.
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Old 30th November 2014, 16:46   #292
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
So Maruti's current standpoint amounts to

We'll make our cars safer if we are told to.

There is such a thing as hard commercial reality, but there is also such a thing as common humanity.
True, something called manufacturer responsibility is clearly missing here. They don't provide safety features because its not mandated by law in India. And for export markets they have to provide all the required safety features because they don't have a choice!

A quick glance at the safety spec sheet of Suzuki Alto in the UK (imported from India, used to be sold as the A-Star in our market). Note that features like ESP or curtain airbags are not available in any of the popular Suzuki models sold in India.

Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements-screen-shot-20141130-7.13.27-pm.png
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Old 30th November 2014, 18:10   #293
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

One can understand the thought process of Mr.Bhargava. His intention is to protect the business interest of Maruti which is his job. But the crude manner and indefensible arguments put forth really degrades the stature of this gentle man leading a reputed company.

It is a joke when he says that person who want to drive at high speed can buy higher version model with safety features. On highways you can see all model of cars driving at high speed. What his suggestion to ensure persons having models without safety features to drive at lower speed?

The next argument is that person upgrading from motorcycles to car because of low cost is more safe. How could it be when the car structural stability is itself of low quality. Even taking his argument that in car fatality is 16%, then we can conclude that auto companies are contributing to this by inferior quality.

Does not his argument that those who want to push airbag sales will talk about safety holds good for him also?

I would have expected more magnanimous reaction from him in committing himself to improve the quality of the cars manufactured by Maruti and lead the way in India.
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Old 30th November 2014, 19:38   #294
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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But the crude manner and indefensible arguments put forth really degrades the stature of this gentle man leading a reputed company.
Perhaps not such a gentle man --- and his company's reputation is not what it was a few weeks ago.
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Old 30th November 2014, 20:49   #295
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"We Shall Build Good Ships Here; At A Profit If We Can, At A Loss If We Must, But Always Good Ships."*Collis Potter Huntington.

But then there is quite a bit of distance between 1886 and 2014.

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Old 30th November 2014, 21:25   #296
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
I don't think that any sort of nationalism works here. It is wrong to talk about other countries dictating to India, because they aren't...

Human bodies, given certain varieties of shade and shape, are the same the world over, and get broken in the same way the world over.

learning by the mistakes of others is something that comes free.

As to what has "barely worked," I don't think that having accident/fatality rates that are way below those of India can be described as barely working.
1. It's not about nationalism, actually - it's about adjusting your problem-solving approach to deal with parameters unique to a particular context, which is ALWAYS going to be somewhat different from other contexts where other solutions worked (or not) to whatever degree. You've said it yourself in one way: "varieties of... [body] shape". Okay, let's run with that: Are distinctions of body size/height/shape/weight taken into serious consideration when buying low-cost turn-key SRS systems from multinational suppliers? Maybe. Or maybe not.

"Learning from other nations" we should certainly all be willing to do - but it is distinct from indiscriminatingly assuming that their solutions will fit your problems. In India, road-speeds are different. Cost of fuel (thus, maximum acceptable vehicle weights with FE goals in mind) are different. Average physical mass of a vehicle occupant and typical number of passengers aboard is different. The percentage of nicely-paved road surfaces is different. Weather patterns are different. Traffic density and following distances are different. Definitions and expectations re: "entry level" are different. Two-wheeler vs. Four-wheeler demographics are different. Etc, etc, etc. To assume, without serious study and discretion, that (precisely) what Germany (or whomever) has done to reduce traffic fatalities will work here is a pretty wild assumption, in my view.

2. "The market is everything" some say. And being that Bosch, Nippon, etc, own (and spend millions of dollars/Euros/yen trying to sell and promote) the technology, I think that's about as close to "dictating" as we need to be for our purposes here. Governments love this stuff too (on either side of the ocean), first because of the increases in trade / tax revenue, but also because it takes the burden off THEM, i.e., of improving driver training/licensing standards, road design and maintenance standards, etc - which are really closer to the root issues that CAUSE crashes - and puts the burden back on the manufacturers to make cars that can allegedly better deal with the horrible driving conditions and standards and the assumption of constant near-misses and/or crashes; the cost burden is of course passed back on to individual consumers, regardless of where/how they live/drive, and it's easier for "the people" to pay out than it is to make "the system" work.

Great. So now I have an SRS airbag to deploy when my statistically more-likely-to-run-off-the-road ABS-equipped vehicle is run off a hill road by the drunk driver of a lorry with no lights, at an unmarked crossing on (apparently) a national highway with no center or border lines, in my ABS/SRS-equipped car that has bald tires and a thick film of biri smoke fogging the glass... Mmmm...That's comforting. Good thing I paid the extra 50,000 for all this safety tech and can have airbags blow up in my face just as I hit the bottom of the abyss.

But maybe by washing the windshield and driving 10kmph slower in my old, rather tractor-like Jeep, I could have avoided such an accident entirely...

3. "Barely working": Again, CONTEXT:

Citing some foreign land's lower accident/fatality rates and linking it to their application of high-tech equipment is far too simplistic. First, they drive larger cars (biggest factor in preventing injuries/fatalitites) that most Indians will never want to try to manoever / park in the metros. They have strict enforcement of driving laws (absent here). They have strict licensing standards (not realistically implemented here). And much better roads, etc. You can't simply say something like, "American cars have ABS/SRS; America's accident / fatality rates are low; thus, mandating these has "worked" and it will work for us, too."
How about you compare accident / fatality statistics from 25-30 years ago in the West (mostly pre-ABS/SRS but post-seat belt) with India's today? Still apples and oranges, but it would be interesting.

But I was speaking more broadly than vehicle safety - the problem is that at the time the "developed" nations put all their substantial (read: costly capital) "development" in place (say, 40+ years ago), our options were much more limited than they are now (coal-fueled power vs. solar/wind; personal transportation vs. high-tech mass-transit; automated wastewater treatment vs. blue-green algae and fish ponds and reed-beds; hard-wire transmission lines running all over the place vs. wi-fi and cellular; universal A/C in offices/houses, vs. intelligent passive heating/cooling home/building design; elaborate centralized sewer networks vs. decentralized composting toilets (think Sweden... or Ladakh) etc - PM me if you want some other examples);

Make things mandatory and often you get low-grade, patched-together quick-fixes rather than well-thought-out solutions that actually help you achieve your goals. When "passive restraints" were government-mandated in the U.S., industry gave us some unsafe (i.e., completely door-mounted and ill-fitted), complex (i.e., motor-driven) seat-belt systems that many people deliberately disabled due to their inconvenience and maintenance costs. More cost and little or no positive effect on safety (certainly less than a well-designed manual seatbelt). THAT would be "barely working". Or early ABS systems (and probably some modern ones) that could increase stopping distances by a wide margin when only one wheel would hit a slippery patch (like road paint markings) - something I've experienced myself; or which gave such alarming noises and pulsations back up through the pedal that people took their foot OFF the brake! THAT is "barely working". These were our "solutions" at the time - I'm not sure they reduced accident / injury rates or increased them, but if Indian had been in a position to then, I suspect they'd have bought into it, too, because it was what "everyone else" was doing. Things have changed now - for the better - with in-house development of cars/bikes going on and a little more thought to the unique needs / desires of the subcontinent. That's what I'm saying about self-confidence and home-grown ability. But ABS/SRS, being more specialized, to my knowledge have always been handled by multi-national suppliers - and making the sale is generally going to be the bottom line.

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Originally Posted by ashlil View Post
I would be inclined to disbelieve this inference about ABS, without raw data.

(I am ignoring the fact that you are somehow equating low-income with low-intelligence in the above, as I think it was unintentional on your part.)

ABS works just like ordinary brakes and you can stand on the brake pedal, if you like, in case of emergencies. The difference between ABS and ordinary brake is that ABS will prevent skidding if you stand on brake pedals. It will not do more harm compared to the ordinary brake.

The cost increase is not even 2% of the total car price. But, let us say there is a cost increase, which may be prohibitive for some. So, please provide safety option pack with every variant

(Setting aside generic stereotypical comments about subcontinent and its people, as again I think it was unintentional on your part)
1. Please do tell me where I've been stereotypical re: the subcontinent and its people(s), and I'll gladly apologize / retract it, because I'd really hate to be doing that (particularly as I spend 90+% of my time with them, am married to one of them, and have two Indian-born kids). As I said I live in a small Himalayan village without much contact with the outside world, and don't spend as much time in other parts of the subcontinent as I used to.

2. Raw data: http://www.monash.edu.au/miri/resear...ectiveness.pdf

Here's a snippet to whet anyone's appetite:

Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements-abs.jpg

So interestingly, ABS fitment is consistent with INCREASES in run-off-road type accidents, and decreases in some other type(s). It also doesn't work too well on loose surfaces: sand, pea gravel, unpacked snow, broken roads, loose dirt / rocks, etc. -

That's consistent both with this study, considerable info on forums out there in lands where ABS has been around awhile, and my own controlled testing experience for the company I was employed with (for which I no longer have data - this was 15+ years ago now, and the data wasn't mine to keep anyway).

If you want to take time to do a little searching, you'll find other stuff out there. It took me about three minutes to discover that Australian study, via: http://www.ehow.com/list_7744219_dis...bs-brakes.html, which sums it up this way: "It is a common belief that ABS systems significantly reduce the stop time of a vehicle, an especially useful trait in the event of an emergency. In most situations, however, this belief is not as accurate as once thought. In reality, some studies show that the change in stopping distance is negligible, and may even increase the distance needed to bring a vehicle to a complete stop. According to a study done by Monash University, ABS may actually increase this distance in certain situations; predominately on soft surfaces and in unpacked snow. It is important for drivers to remember that the primary function of an anti-lock brake system is to avoid skidding and assist the driver in maintaining control; it is still necessary to maintain a safe distance no matter what the road condition."

I live in a rural place with lots of loose stones, mud, unpacked snow, wear my seatbelt, dip my lights, maintain my vehicle, and rarely drive over 50-60 kmph. And running off hill roads where there's often very high drops (which data indicates I'd be MORE at risk of with ABS) seems more hopeless to me than being hit by (or hitting) another car ON the road. So why should I be willing to pay even Rs1,000 extra for ABS just because the government says I have to, just because it is of reasonable benefit to people driving on nice roads in South Delhi? SO WHAT???

3. Low-income is not to be equated with low-intelligence. I do live in a small Himalayan village, mind you, and can/do find a great measure of intelligence (especially unique types related to the context) here. But I do not find a great deal of the flow of broader knowledge and information - which is what's needed to understand how to get the benefits (if any, in the context) from ABS and airbags and etc.

In general I WOULD draw an unfortunate relationship between low-income and low education level; and then between education level and the amount of information people seem to be interested in absorbing. Proof? What percentage of tBhpians are rural vs. urban? Honestly?

And this urban/rural divide is not something to be ignored. Can't stereotype here, right: I do have friends here who traded in an old bike for a Nano (they love Nano's up here; anyway, the dealer gave them Rs20,000 trade-in value on a completely thrashed Pulsar) and have not bought another bike, either;

On the other hand, some of my fellow villagers here are actually quite wealthy as a result of tourism and real-estate prospecting. Just as they are in the state to the south due to rich agriculture. Which is to say, having sold Rs 4crores of land recently (for example), some of my neighbors could well-afford ABS. Unfortunately, they are also quite uneducated, very few having completed Class Ten. So ask one of them what ABS means in relation to cars, and though a large percentage of them are skilled professional drivers who drive to Rohtang Pass daily, you'll only get blank stares. They don't surf the net. They don't read magazines (or forums like tBhp!). And they still - I guess as a cultural tradition - pinch their paise; maybe because it wasn't that long ago that there was so little of it to pinch. Am I being stereotypical - or am I being statistical - to actually suppose that a fair percentage of (not all of) the current entry-level market in India is at least SOMETHING like that? Maruti's marketing top-brass are not idiots.

4. There is a technological factor which represents limitations in effectiveness (especially on low-cost systems), and there is also the "information factor". Obviously (re: study above and related) these ABS-systems do NOT work "just like ordinary brakes" apart from not skidding, and UNDER SOME CONDITIONS (and that will depend on the driver and the sorts of roads he frequents, his driving style, etc) they most certainly CAN do more harm. Especially if/when people think that ABS is a miracle-worker and can make them stop near-instantly.

5. So Rs.30,000 on a 2.4lakh entry-level car = only <2% (???) Interesting math here. BUT I VERY MUCH AGREE THAT IT WOULD BE GOOD TO OFFER A "SAFETY VARIANT". Only trouble is that all that equipment would have to be certified by whatever government body does that sort of thing, and that's expensive and time-consuming, and if the company honestly believes that very few people will opt for it on that particular model at that particular cost, then it drives the price of all the non-equipped cars up, too - 'cause SOMEONE'S got to pay for all that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dark.knight View Post
Maybe 2 years back I'd agree that the urban customer had no idea of safety tech, but its all over the place today. Rural customers might still not have grasped the concept yet, but most are ruled by economics. Its quite natural for a company to push a model with safety features than without because of higher margins, but when the consumer has a ceiling on the price it may not be so easy. The safety-frame of a vehicle, well as I said before its all down to local company policies.

That policy is influenced by the mentality of buyers in the country. Ultimately, sales matter. Things just are the way they are as of now, & only 'demand' for safer models can give birth to policy changes.
Great comments here (all the ones I didn't quote, too).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Turbo car View Post
...the "Value For Money" consciousness...has "forced" auto makers to cut costs in form of critical safety features to add cosmetic features. The mind set is that we believe that we own the road and accidents can only happen to the next guy and not us.
What most of us has sought to ignore is the entry of millions of new drivers on the Indian roads in the past few decades. As we all know, the driver's licencing mechanism in India is a sad joke in comparison to other developed countries, and as a result the level of knowledge and skill of drivers on road has radically declined.
This coupled with poor roads, heavy increase in number of cars and pathetic road signs, all results in a deadly situation wherein any driver on road, however careful or skilled he is, is equally susceptible to an accident as the imbecile driver on the next lane. The relevance of ABS and Airbags is much more now than in the eighties where in Maruthi launched its 800.
Good points.

I have to say (as, living in a hill station, I see a broad mix of wealthy/poor, rural/urban drivers every day) that the obnoxious attitude of "owning the road" is generally proportionate to the cost of the car that driver is handling. These would be the more "educated" persons with more expensive cars equipped with better safety equipment. So if one cares primarily for his/her self and own well-being, conditions will continue to be hellish out there for the average person. Got ABS and a bigger car? You drive more rashly, having the PERCEPTION of safety. Got HID lighting? Better to blind the poor M-800 / Omni guys with, since you're obviously not going to dip your lights for their sorry butts. I think this is where "love thy neighbor [no matter what he's driving or where he's from or how intelligent he may or may not look] as yourself" comes in again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by avira_tk View Post
I don't agree with the maruti boss, but considering the kind of crap airbags Toyota put in their cars which ended up killing the passengers in the event of a crash maybe a moratorium on manufacturers obsessed with cost cutting ( the Japanese's ones mainly) adding any more safety kit that might work to cause what it tries to prevent.

The whole 'illiterate villagers don't buy a car with safety gear' is pretty much a consistent theme on this forum. In my experience, education, postcode and money don't play a role in passing up on safety, the last person who dismissed ABS as just a gimmick was someone in an urban area buying a safari cash down. He parroted the sales line that ABS reduces braking distance by just 2 feet

Don't ask me where he got the numbers.
1. Low-grade (government-mandated) equipment is certainly of limited usefulness.

2. You're right, misinformation / misunderstanding is not reserved for the poorer classes. The case you cited betrays a basic ignorance of the benefits of the system. I'd say the average uneducated rural customer indeed lacks basic info (how much of it is even available in languages other than English?), whereas the average upscale consumer seems to often be influenced as much by what the salesman tells him, and the "wow" tech factor and the status it gets him, as much as by any careful study of his requirements and the cost/benefit analysis. In such cases, he'll be just as unlikely to know how to best avoid accidents with ABS as the "illiterate village guy"

3. I think I saw reference even in some of the studies out there, which make a distinction between the efficacy of ABS/SRS in foreign urban/rural settings, simply because the typical types of accidents encountered in each context are very different.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pratyush6 View Post
The only sensible comment though comes here:

Abdul Majeed, partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers, offered a different perspective. "With road infrastructure improving, the average speed on Indian roads has been going up. As much as 30-40 per cent of road accidents happening in the country can be avoided if cars are equipped with basic safety features. It is true the cost will go up but if customers are educated, sales should not be a problem. Nobody would want to risk their lives for Rs 35,000-40,000," he said.
Now THERE'S a figure I'd like a source study for: 30-40% less accidents with "basic safety features"???? What are these miracle features, exactly?
And I am so curious to know what makes a partner at a financial firm a reliable, unbiased source of information on vehicle safety. But with such a wild figure being cited, one could almost suspect PWC holds some foreign investments in certain tech supplier firms??? "Nobody would 'risk their lives' for Rs.30-40,000" Ah, yes - the language of fear generation, without which it is very hard to sell certain products.

Now, would we risk our lives for a lakh? A crore? What's our price? Shall we all retire to caves in the forest, then? That would be far safer than driving, after all, and it only costs a lifetime's earnings and comforts. Everything's on a scale. Some "benefits" are worth it FOR SOME to pay, others are not.


And here's how it is personally for me, for anyone wanting to know: I've driven literally dozens of ABS-equipped cars, and owned one with what was (in its time) a pretty high-end system - a BMW 735i (being twelve years old at the time, had paid a mere 3lakhs for the car, against the original price of 25lakhs!).

Now I ride a fairly new 150cc two-wheeler to save money on fuel - and to deal with traffic & parking easier in tourist season (and because I love biking). And I have a 14-year-old steel-bodied Jeep Marshal that has been upgraded to disc brakes and functional (retractable) seat belts - very easy conversions and little cost. There are certain things it's right for the government to mandate, and these should've been two of them, having undeniable and universally-recognized benefits in ALL contexts and just about every situation.

As for the rest, well, there seems little benefit for our purposes in spending 12+ lakhs for a new ABS/SRS-equipped 4x4; and moreover, I see these premium cars with all the high-tech features laying on their sides or upside-down off the road in single-car crashes pretty regularly up here (in most recent memory, a Honda City and a Fortuner, both within a km or so of our place). Could it happen to me, too? Yes. And I should consider that soberly - and yes, even pray - every time I head out on the road. Pray not only for safety and a better fate, but for His help to make me the decent (even loving) human being I should be when I get behind the wheel - and at all other times, besides.

Thanks, there's been some great responses here and I can see how either side could be argued... just my 2paise, as I said.

-Eric

Last edited by ringoism : 30th November 2014 at 21:32.
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Old 30th November 2014, 22:53   #297
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

I think there should be a single world body for all the automobiles like we have WHO or IEEE which should make all the rules & regulations covering all the aspects. Things like airbags, ABS should be made mandatory for all cars manufactured anywhere in the world irrespective of the country regulations. Also the body should come up with new rules such as a car should not start if all the occupants are not wearing seat belts from time to time. Any manufacturer found in violation should be punished severely which is the only way to force manufacturers to build safer cars. Once the manufacturers are taken care of, the governments can concentrate on other important aspects like better training facilities, strict license issuing policy, etc.
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Old 1st December 2014, 12:15   #298
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

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Originally Posted by ringoism View Post


1. Please do tell me where I've been stereotypical re: the subcontinent and its people(s), and I'll gladly apologize / retract it, because I'd really hate to be doing that (particularly as I spend 90+% of my time with them, am married to one of them, and have two Indian-born kids). As I said I live in a small Himalayan village without much contact with the outside world, and don't spend as much time in other parts of the subcontinent as I used to.
(I did not even know that you were NOT indian, when I said you were being stereotypical about subcontinent.) What you have mentioned above, does not prove or disprove anything. A statement like: "In my years in the subcontinent, I've seen a great many attempts to make the "solutions" - whether real or imagined - of other, sometimes excessively-admired nations work here; more often than not, these have failed, and often at great expense" is stereotypical as it implies that the subcontinent somehow loves to follow excessively-admired nations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ringoism View Post

2. Raw data: http://www.monash.edu.au/miri/resear...ectiveness.pdf

Here's a snippet to whet anyone's appetite:

Attachment 1314082

So interestingly, ABS fitment is consistent with INCREASES in run-off-road type accidents, and decreases in some other type(s). It also doesn't work too well on loose surfaces: sand, pea gravel, unpacked snow, broken roads, loose dirt / rocks, etc. -

That's consistent both with this study, considerable info on forums out there in lands where ABS has been around awhile, and my own controlled testing experience for the company I was employed with (for which I no longer have data - this was 15+ years ago now, and the data wasn't mine to keep anyway).

If you want to take time to do a little searching, you'll find other stuff out there. It took me about three minutes to discover that Australian study, via: http://www.ehow.com/list_7744219_dis...bs-brakes.html, which sums it up this way: "It is a common belief that ABS systems significantly reduce the stop time of a vehicle, an especially useful trait in the event of an emergency. In most situations, however, this belief is not as accurate as once thought. In reality, some studies show that the change in stopping distance is negligible, and may even increase the distance needed to bring a vehicle to a complete stop. According to a study done by Monash University, ABS may actually increase this distance in certain situations; predominately on soft surfaces and in unpacked snow. It is important for drivers to remember that the primary function of an anti-lock brake system is to avoid skidding and assist the driver in maintaining control; it is still necessary to maintain a safe distance no matter what the road condition."

I live in a rural place with lots of loose stones, mud, unpacked snow, wear my seatbelt, dip my lights, maintain my vehicle, and rarely drive over 50-60 kmph. And running off hill roads where there's often very high drops (which data indicates I'd be MORE at risk of with ABS) seems more hopeless to me than being hit by (or hitting) another car ON the road. So why should I be willing to pay even Rs1,000 extra for ABS just because the government says I have to, just because it is of reasonable benefit to people driving on nice roads in South Delhi? SO WHAT???
Here is another link: http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/808206.pdf

Although, ABS increases run-off-the-road type accidents, it fares still better than ordinary brakes in other types of collisions. So, I think you are just picking and choosing the portion of the study that suits your line of argument.

Your logic above is self-destructing (i.e. I can use your logic and reach totally opposite conclusion). Why should I, in south Delhi, be put at risk by not mandating ABS, just because someone in Rohtang pass might slide off the road?

My statement above, as well as yours are logically incorrect. The correct way would be to take the study as a whole and see that ABS does provide statistically significant benefit (taking into considerations all types of crashes) and hence it should be on the cars.

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Originally Posted by ringoism View Post

3. Low-income is not to be equated with low-intelligence. I do live in a small Himalayan village, mind you, and can/do find a great measure of intelligence (especially unique types related to the context) here. But I do not find a great deal of the flow of broader knowledge and information - which is what's needed to understand how to get the benefits (if any, in the context) from ABS and airbags and etc.

In general I WOULD draw an unfortunate relationship between low-income and low education level; and then between education level and the amount of information people seem to be interested in absorbing. Proof? What percentage of tBhpians are rural vs. urban? Honestly?

And this urban/rural divide is not something to be ignored. Can't stereotype here, right: I do have friends here who traded in an old bike for a Nano (they love Nano's up here; anyway, the dealer gave them Rs20,000 trade-in value on a completely thrashed Pulsar) and have not bought another bike, either;

On the other hand, some of my fellow villagers here are actually quite wealthy as a result of tourism and real-estate prospecting. Just as they are in the state to the south due to rich agriculture. Which is to say, having sold Rs 4crores of land recently (for example), some of my neighbors could well-afford ABS. Unfortunately, they are also quite uneducated, very few having completed Class Ten. So ask one of them what ABS means in relation to cars, and though a large percentage of them are skilled professional drivers who drive to Rohtang Pass daily, you'll only get blank stares. They don't surf the net. They don't read magazines (or forums like tBhp!). And they still - I guess as a cultural tradition - pinch their paise; maybe because it wasn't that long ago that there was so little of it to pinch. Am I being stereotypical - or am I being statistical - to actually suppose that a fair percentage of (not all of) the current entry-level market in India is at least SOMETHING like that? Maruti's marketing top-brass are not idiots.
You are being stereotypical. To be statistical, you will need lot more data than your neighbours and team-bhp (The correlations are extremely difficult to establish in statistics, especially for complex things like low-income and education level and safety awareness level).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ringoism View Post

4. There is a technological factor which represents limitations in effectiveness (especially on low-cost systems), and there is also the "information factor". Obviously (re: study above and related) these ABS-systems do NOT work "just like ordinary brakes" apart from not skidding, and UNDER SOME CONDITIONS (and that will depend on the driver and the sorts of roads he frequents, his driving style, etc) they most certainly CAN do more harm. Especially if/when people think that ABS is a miracle-worker and can make them stop near-instantly.
If your point is: information about ABS/Airbag should be mandatory for driving test, I agree. (About ABS doing more harm, we are again just picking and choosing. So, the claim is not valid)

Quote:
Originally Posted by ringoism View Post

5. So Rs.30,000 on a 2.4lakh entry-level car = only <2% (???) Interesting math here. BUT I VERY MUCH AGREE THAT IT WOULD BE GOOD TO OFFER A "SAFETY VARIANT". Only trouble is that all that equipment would have to be certified by whatever government body does that sort of thing, and that's expensive and time-consuming, and if the company honestly believes that very few people will opt for it on that particular model at that particular cost, then it drives the price of all the non-equipped cars up, too - 'cause SOMEONE'S got to pay for all that.
30,000 is a magic number. It does not take into consideration economy of scale. But, I have already agreed to the point that it may be prohibitive for some. That is why, I am saying let's make it mandatory for car makers to provide ABS/Airbag as option in all variants. SOMEONE who wants to buy the option pays for all that.

Although not in response to my post, you mention in your post that the governments want to mandate safety pack because it lets them off the hook. I claim that the auto companies are blaming the other causes of road accidents because it lets them off the hook. But, this line of argument leads us nowhere.
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Old 1st December 2014, 13:36   #299
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

A very good article about how the car makers in India "Discount" Safety.

Car companies `discount' buyers' safety in sales war
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Old 1st December 2014, 18:59   #300
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Default Re: Safety last? Maruti Chairman Mr. R.C. Bhargava's ridiculous statements

Eric, perhaps you boldy go where none have gone before.

Some of your points may be good for specific instances. Making too much of certain devices, such as airbags, in the Indian context is well covered in this and parallel threads. Driving education, knowledge and attitudes remain probably the biggest causes of accidents.

None of this addresses the fact that Maruthi (etc) think it is just fine to sell inherently less-safe cars (not talking about gadgets, but about body design) to Indians because the Indian government allows them to do so.

On the whole, I still maintain that you overestimate the differences in Indian driving conditions. I too am not of Indian origin, and driven more km in UK than in India.
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