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View Poll Results: Whats your pick?
European Cars 211 43.78%
Japanese Cars 219 45.44%
Others (Indian, Korean, American etc.) 22 4.56%
Prefer both equally 30 6.22%
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Old 15th May 2014, 11:46   #286
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Rather than choose between either Asian or European/American cars for better safety standards, it's more to do with driving skills of the brain behind the steering wheel, and the situation around him on the roads. A good, safe and reliable driver has the best chance of being safe, even when inside a tin box, while a careless driver will always crash, even if he's driving a cast-iron vault.

I can quote numerous instances of people driving an ABS-less, Airbag-less thin sheet of metal all their lives and retiring happily into old age, while newbie drivers crash heavily built SUVs with full safety features. In case people forget, 90% of road accidents occur due to human error. In our country, given the state of roads and traffic conditions, I dare say the percentage rises to 95%. (SOURCE)

So, rather than blaming the country of origin for the safety standards (or lack of) for a particular car, the wider picture needs to be taken into account.

Disclaimer: I am not a brilliant driver, nor claim to be 100% alert on the roads, neither do I favor any particular country's cars.

In the end, all cars, regardless of being European/Japanese/American/Korean/African, when launched in India, are "Made In India, for India". That's the final fact.

Last edited by RavenAvi : 15th May 2014 at 11:52.
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Old 15th May 2014, 11:47   #287
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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
The thinner metal is to reduce weight and hence increase fuel efficiency.
Weight + Fuel efficiency is the main rule that is now working in manufacturers mind for the mainstream cars, hatchbacks that garner sales numbers, cars that are sold by the fuel efficiency etc.

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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
As technologies advance and material science also advances, the trend will be to use the thinnest sheet metal without compromising on the structural integrity of the car.
+1 for the material science's which will help the industry to use less but gain more. But Maruti has to learn how to make stuff as the doors, certain body panels cave-in on the sightest of the pressure exerted.

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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Moreover, rather than my layman observations, I would compare crash test scores to judge the structural integrity of the car
Wish we get NCAP results every 1 year so that it will help buyers in choosing the right car that has everything in it.
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Old 15th May 2014, 11:58   #288
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Quote:
Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post

Interesting to see the SX4 manufactured/sold/serviced in India by MSIL being called a Fiat. LOL. The Baleno and Linea are cars from different times and thus cannot be compared. The SX4 being the Baleno replacement should be compared with the Linea and they fare well as seen from figures posted earlier.
Why you should exclude SX4 is that it is unlike any other Maruti that has been sold in India. Just like Spark isn't a Chevrolet, SX4 isn't a Maruti even by a long stretch. For a fair comparison, it should be Swift (2006) vs Punto. Or Baleno vs Sienna/Petra. Or Zen vs Uno.
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Old 15th May 2014, 12:02   #289
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Originally Posted by saket77 View Post
If you go through this link(http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...y-test-17.html (Indian Nano, Alto, Figo, i10 & Polo FAIL Global NCAP Safety Test)), it says, the 'Cars relevant to India' were tested. Hence, it should be the Indian City. Looks like the 3rd generation City to me in the crash picture, and has bagged 5 stars!

My point is that the thicker sheet metal is simply not a pointer to a safe car. A rigid, modern chassis which can distribute the impact force evenly with least forces transferred to the passengers directly is a safe car. Certainly not defending an Alto either, but just be because a car has thinner metal panels, we should not dismiss them as unsafe.

Else tell me that how a Polo & a Figo both scored 0 in the NCAP along with other Indian cars? It was only after the airbags, the Polo fared better? So, without airbags, Polo is just as safe (or unsafe) as the Nano, Alto, & i10!
I fully agree with you mate infact that was my argument a few pages ago too

Watch the video again though: it says clearly that the variant without Honda's acronym for esp which is Vehicle Stability Control, scored 4 stars. I do concede it did slightly better than the Vento in adult occupant protection. I am just pointing you to the exacts out there that's all. You don't want some fanboy catching the error and pointing it out now do you

Also while these cars, especially the City without ESP and Vento with dual airbags are relevant to India, does that mean they are the same exact car? Considering the City and Vento are locally manufactured here in India, couldn't they be different on some scale? All I'm wondering is, is there any proof we can source that the Honda City with dual airbags, abs, ebd and no vsc, manufactured in India, is the same as the Honda City with dual airbags, abs, ebd and no vsc manufactured in Malaysia and used for the test?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by blacksport View Post
Why you should exclude SX4 is that it is unlike any other Maruti that has been sold in India. Just like Spark isn't a Chevrolet, SX4 isn't a Maruti even by a long stretch. For a fair comparison, it should be Swift (2006) vs Punto. Or Baleno vs Sienna/Petra. Or Zen vs Uno.
By your reasoning, everything apart from products that Suzuki jointly developed with Maruti like the Ertiga, is not a Maruti

The SX4 as I mentioned in my post above, is a Suzuki product http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...ml#post3434218 (Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?) Fiat was only responsible for co-styling the exterior and providing diesel engines. Nothing else.

You can go ahead and conduct your tests on the 2006 Swift, Baleno, Sienna/Petra, Uno. However, know that they will be completely irrelevant as those products are not manufactured and sold anymore.

Last edited by Vid6639 : 15th May 2014 at 12:34. Reason: merging posts. Please use edit option within 30mins.
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Old 15th May 2014, 12:22   #290
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

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Originally Posted by blacksport View Post
In the absence of any testing system available in this part of the land, it is only convenient on your part to insist on only believing crash tests.
As an engineer who has worked in the automotive industry for a good part of my life, I tend to believe test results where they are done in almost identical situations because the results are comparable. In my education or experience, I have not come across something which makes me believe that heavier=stronger. If I did believe that, I would think that F1 cars are totally unsafe and instant death traps as most of their structure is made up of CFRP which is not thick grade steel and is lighter (lighter is unsafe, right?)
And sorry for being sarcastic, but I seriously think that India does not need any crash testing. We have enough people who can just look at the car and decide how safe they are. For me, a car is safe if
1) The crumple zones do their job and absorb the impact energy by self destruction and
2) the passenger cabin remains intact, with minimal intrusions and least impact energy transferred to the occupants' body (survivability).

Body damage does not bother me in an accident. If I press the hood and the metal bends, even then I'm not worried, because if the above criteria are met, I don't care.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blacksport View Post
The refusal to look at build quality, the refusal to look at crash evidences, the track record of Indo-Japanese manufacturers in dishing out under-engineered cars is preposterous.
As you have mentioned these points, I hope that you have evidence to substantiate the claims also. I'm interested in the following
Build Quality - How do you define it? How do you measure it? Do you have a scale or measurement criteria?
Crash Evidences - Do you have a statistical analysis report? I mean, proof that in the event of a similar crash, a Honda City is less safer to the passengers than say a VW Vento?
Track record of Indo-Japanese manufacturers in dishing out under-engineered cars - Again, do you have compiled information/evidence suggesting that only Japanese/Korean manufacturers are skimping on safety of cars and Europeans and American ones not? For example, Ford admitted that they are making stronger Ecosports to be sold in EU than the Indian ones. Others also might be doing that, I don't deny. But can you point me to news articles etc? Actually, I'm glad to be proven wrong because I also have the same suspicion. Only thing different is that I believe all manufacturers does it, irrespective of their nationality.
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Old 15th May 2014, 12:23   #291
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Can anyone on this thread elucidate how much sheet metal thickness is "good enough" for the vehicles that we are talking?
And how does one determine such thickness?
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Old 15th May 2014, 12:33   #292
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Another example to allay this japanese vs European cars is the Suzuki Swift and the Renault Duster.

At the recent Auto Expo Maruti showcased the Euro spec Suzuki Swift Sport. This was an imported car. I had a chance to closely check out the car inside out. After that I was disappointed with Maruti. The sheet metal thickness, weight of boot and the way the doors shut would put even VW/Fiat to shame. A tap on the door/fenders resulted in a solid thunk rather than a ting. It did no feel like any Maruti and was on par with the best euros.

Then you have the Renault Duster. Call it Euro or Romanian but it's still Euro car. The sheet metal is probably on par with Maruti. Doors feel hollow. Super easy to dent the fenders with a slight tap.
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Old 15th May 2014, 12:49   #293
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

While I agree with you on the bolded part in your statement, its unfortunate that its not just the sensible driver that is on the road and there are careless drivers, reckless drivers, cows, dogs, trees and more than what one can imagine and cause a situation that is totally unpredictable.

While there is such a situation that is out of the reliable driver's control, the european cars simply listen and react better to the driver inputs than the asian/japanese cars because of the stronger handling dynamics. Be it a tin-box or cast-iron vault matters only if things go out of hand. But to avoid such a situation, my vote is always for the europeans.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenAvi View Post
Rather than choose between either Asian or European/American cars for better safety standards, it's more to do with driving skills of the brain behind the steering wheel, and the situation around him on the roads. A good, safe and reliable driver has the best chance of being safe, even when inside a tin box, while a careless driver will always crash, even if he's driving a cast-iron vault.
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:29   #294
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A fact, since our discussion has become claim against counter-claim: A 2014 Linea t-jet with all-four disc brakes on all variants, and 205mm wide, 16 inch tyres (emotion), stops from 80 to 0, according to Autocar/Whatcar? as much as 2.7m before a topend 2014 new Honda City, which has 15 inch, 165mm tyres. The City also has extremely thin sheetmetal.

I hasten to point out that the Honda is a superstar in the marketplace, and the Linea an also-ran.

Now, either Fiat India is stupid, wasting resources on useless heavy guage sheetmetal, and great brakes+tyres that have little to do with safety, or Honda is deliberately skimping on the Indian City since its percieved brand values here do not require it to maintain decent standards of braking+tyres.

Last edited by desdemona : 15th May 2014 at 14:37. Reason: error
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:36   #295
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

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Originally Posted by A350XWB View Post
As an engineer who has worked in the automotive industry for a good part of my life, I tend to believe test results where they are done in almost identical situations because the results are comparable.
That is a typical Indian way of saying: "Do you know who I am"? Although it is folded and presented along with something else.
Quote:
In my education or experience, I have not come across something which makes me believe that heavier=stronger.
If that is true, can you explain why newer Suzuki cars are putting on weight recently? Especially after they are being tested by Euro NCAP?
Quote:
If I did believe that, I would think that F1 cars are totally unsafe and instant death traps as most of their structure is made up of CFRP which is not thick grade steel and is lighter (lighter is unsafe, right?)
I can agree with you if you can prove, or at least state, that Maruti is using a grade of steel which is stronger without being heavier.
Quote:
And sorry for being sarcastic, but I seriously think that India does not need any crash testing. We have enough people who can just look at the car and decide how safe they are.
Actually, don't you think that you are lucky that crash testing does not exist in India. It it were, no Maruti in the current form would have passed, and we would not have been having this debate at all. What I am saying is, don't hide behind the only argument that crash test data is not available. Look for other evidences, however subtle they may be. At least take the test ratings form Euro NCAP and extrapolate. And while you are at it, please don't pick and choose one odd result that suits your argument.
Quote:
For me, a car is safe if
1) The crumple zones do their job and absorb the impact energy by self destruction and
2) the passenger cabin remains intact, with minimal intrusions and least impact energy transferred to the occupants' body (survivability).
Good. For a car that suits the requirements above, you are more likely to find a conforming European than a Japanese.
Quote:
Body damage does not bother me in an accident. If I press the hood and the metal bends, even then I'm not worried, because if the above criteria are met, I don't care.
Yes, if. A big IF. When a car has a flimsy body, there is more reason to believe that it has a flimsy structure too. A miser would be a miser in all things, not just body.
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:39   #296
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

In my opinion, a blanket statement that the European cars are better than Japanese/Korean brands (for safety) does not hold much value in the current scenario. For example, the recently launched Hyundai Santa FE was voted as the best-in-class Large SUV by Euro-NCAP (2012 rating).

Safety concerns should be more on those made for India (or developing markets) models, which are tailor-made to exploit the lack of regulations in our country. Japanese cars are deemed unsafe because most of these market-specific compromises are coming from them. And unfortunately the portfolio of international models from the Japanese brigade (in India) is getting thinner and thinner. For example, a manufacturer like Honda now has just one global model (CR-V) in their India line-up.
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:42   #297
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Quote:
Originally Posted by desdemona View Post
A fact, since our discussion has become claim against counter-claim: A 2014 Linea t-jet with all-four disc brakes on all variants, and 205mm wide, 16 inch tyres (emotion), stops from 80 to 0, according to Autocar/Whatcar? as much as 2.7m before a topend 2014 new Honda City, which has 15 inch, 165mm tyres. The City also has extremely thin sheetmetal.

I hasten to point out that the Honda is a superstar in the marketplace, and the Linea an also-ran.

Now, either Fiat India is stupid, wasting resources on useless heavy guage sheetmetal, and great brakes+tyres that have little to do with safety, or Honda is deliberately skimping on the Indian City since its percieved brand values here do not require it to maintain decent standards of braking+tyres.
Could you give the link here, please?
What is the benchmark stopping distance?
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:43   #298
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Originally Posted by saket77 View Post
Else tell me that how a Polo & a Figo both scored 0 in the NCAP along with other Indian cars? It was only after the airbags, the Polo fared better? So, without airbags, Polo is just as safe (or unsafe) as the Nano, Alto, & i10!
THis is precisely the point. Did you know that the suzuki Alto has a 2009 Euro NCAP rating of 3 but the Indian version has 0. Speaks about the Japanese quality of stuff delivered to the Indian Market.

The moment you add two airbags to the Polo it goes from a rating of 0 to 5 in the Indian model. Can you say the same about the Alto?

Quote:
Originally Posted by saket77 View Post
So, does that mean that the Japanese cars beat the Europeans in their own backyard? The report I compiled and posted on Page 17 suggests so.

Also, since it is established that most European cars are also stripped down versions of their original versions while some are in fact developed for Asian/ Indian market, how can one argue to have them to have the same level of safety? If Japanese cars sold in Europe are termed 'unsafe' in India as they are diluted, why the same would not apply to European cars, esp. when a lot of them are only developed for and sold in India/ Asia?
I dont think any one here on this forum is doubting the Japanese ability to make world class stuff. I own a Japanese sports bike (a Kawasaki Ninja , assembled in India)) and its given me zilch problems (touchwood) in four years and 57000 kilometers of ownership. Have done some insane speeds on it, have had numerous heart in the mouth moments and the bike has behaved the same way I expected it to behave. The only trouble I faced was when the tyres became worn out and the grip level was low.The bloody battery of the bike lasted 4 years!!!

But the moment it comes to a Japanese bike locally manufactured in India, the quality is not essentially the same. (e.g. is a Honda cbr 250r).

The Japanese customization of cars for India is not directed on safety but more on cost and reliability. This means that the cars are different from the same models they export to Europe. This also means that you cant just take a EURO NCAP and plonk it on the same model sold in India.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Vid6639 View Post
Another example to allay this japanese vs European cars is the Suzuki Swift and the Renault Duster.

At the recent Auto Expo Maruti showcased the Euro spec Suzuki Swift Sport. This was an imported car. I had a chance to closely check out the car inside out. After that I was disappointed with Maruti. The sheet metal thickness, weight of boot and the way the doors shut would put even VW/Fiat to shame. A tap on the door/fenders resulted in a solid thunk rather than a ting. It did no feel like any Maruti and was on par with the best euros.
Spot on. The cars you get here are different from the models these guys sell in Europe.

Ever till we have an Indian NCAP or crash test all we can do is see the pictures of accidents and be a keyboard warrior (as some call it) and decide on which car is safe. The pics of the accidents suggest only one thing for sure. If you are involved in a serious accident and would like to come out of it alive, be seat belted in a European one with airbags.

Last edited by JayKis : 15th May 2014 at 14:48.
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:52   #299
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blacksport View Post
That is a typical Indian way of saying: "Do you know who I am"?
......
......
Yes, if. A big IF. When a car has a flimsy body, there is more reason to believe that it has a flimsy structure too. A miser would be a miser in all things, not just body.
There is a hint of personal attack in your post. Please refrain from such comments. If you had tried to understand what the poster actually wanted to convey by telling that he has worked in the automobile industry, you would not have posted what you did. As an insider to industry, one is bound to have more detailed information than most of us. Just like someone mentioned a while ago that he has worked for an auto insurer.

And about the miser comment: Technology has advanced much in the last decades and words like thick=strong=heavy do not exist anymore. Don't judge books by their covers.

Thanks.

Last edited by saket77 : 15th May 2014 at 14:54.
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Old 15th May 2014, 14:55   #300
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayKis View Post
The pics of the accidents suggest only one thing for sure. If you are involved in a serious accident and would like to come out of it alive, be seat belted in a European one with airbags.
This is not what I meant. Given a choice I would choose safety features over japanese/european. For 9lakhs lakhs if I had the option of Etios V with ABS/airbags or Vento Trendline with no safety features, I would go for the Etios.

More than sheet metal I would opt for the safety features. Usually the european car is more expensive than the Jap counterpart. In the budget you can either get top spec Japanese with ABS/airbags or mid variant Euro with only ABS. In which case I would go for the top spec Japanese.

I bought a Figo Titanium for a little more over the Swift ZDi only for the ABS/airbags. I did not worry about Euro/Japanese.

Last edited by Vid6639 : 15th May 2014 at 14:56.
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