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View Poll Results: Would you like your car to have ABS and Airbags
Want ABS 146 78.07%
Want Airbags 105 56.15%
They dont help, not required 2 1.07%
Cost too much, otherwise I like to have them fitted 41 21.93%
Not sure 3 1.60%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 187. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 7th December 2010, 14:32   #211
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IMO - Airbags will save from the Worst scenario possible !! I would rate Airbags higher since they save the chest/lungs from crushing.
ABS - Yes but a secondary safety feature.
Personally i would go with both however your scenario is different. So my suggestion is for this scenario only.

ABS and Airbags should be made standard on all cars (no matter if it's 3 or 30 lakhs) by Government. Afterall no life is more precious than other
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Old 7th December 2010, 16:19   #212
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Default No straight answer, but some facts (pros & cons)

1st option: If really concerned about safety, ABS + Airbags

Frankly, I wouldnt like to be in a position where I would have to choose, but,
If one were to choose, I would say its a personal opinion based on
(a) previous driving experience (and if any, --> accident experience)
(b) driving scenarios
(c) 'perceived' robustness/crashworthiness of vehicle structure

For a person who has experienced wheel lock-ups before or has a vehicle in which his/her way of braking makes the wheel-lock up, then definitely ABS. If not, test drive the vehicle again and see how confident the person is with the braking of the vehicle. Maybe TD with + without ABS variants of the same model to get a feel of how much ABS can help.

Else, airbags.

Academically, to list the pros and cons of the 2 systems:
ABS:
Vehicle Control:
Pros: Steerability of vehicle no matter what the condition is
Cons: what if there is no escape route? like no option of changing lanes etc
Braking distance:
Pros: generally tests show 'distance-to-halt' is less on surfaces with higher friction
Cons: 'distance-to-halt' increases on slippery surfaces or surfaces with lesser friction

Usage:
Pros: Active safety device. User can be confident once he knows how to use it the right way.
Correct usage under his/her control
Cons: Incorrect usage. Not many people know how to use ABS the right way. They keep pumping the brakes
which doesnt make the ABS function well. Not many people who use ABS the right way realise
in that nth moment that the steering is in their control. They are frozen at the wheel.
Risk Compensation>> As posted earlier, this is about drivers being a bit more aggressive under the assurance that ABS will take care.

Feel:
Pros: For some, the pulsating feeling at the pedal is assuring
Cons: For some, they feel they could have braked better without ABS and then get into a panic
that the vehicle isnt decelerating the way they want it to.

Airbags:
Effectiveness:
Pros: In India, should work regardless of seatbelts, but "effective" only with seatbelts
Cons: Unwanted deployments, lack of side & curtain airbags (specifically wrt the cars chosen),
Effectiveness of the sensor system
(Do the cars in India have 2/3 airbag sensors (right, left & center) in the front like in the US, or just one in the center?)

A vehicle de-contented in terms of safety parts in the structure would need airbag sensing tests and probably re-calibration. Until safety norms come to India (MY2013/2014
and beyond) and the subsequent consumer metrics (which would reveal occupant injury numbers), there is no way of saying how effective airbags are in any particular vehicle.
As discussed elsewhere, all other ratings like EuroNCAP etc hold good only for vehicles sold there. Unless the same vehicle in India is built to EU spec, wouldnt be wise to
compare and take comfort that the same level of protection is assured.

Usage:
Pros: No specific user action other than to be belted and to keep the face atleast 25cms away from steering wheel
Cons: Not wearing seatbelts!...
Can cause airbag related injuries (which btw, are usually not life threatening, better than losing a life)

Final note: Both these systems need to be calibrated to Indian conditions which currently I think there is no way of finding out.
So, there is no straight answer, no India-specific stats as to which is more essential among the two. Back to the above point. Personal choice!
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Old 7th December 2010, 16:38   #213
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Little off topic....
Do Airbags have a shelf life?
Do you need to replace the old Airbags with new after few years?
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Old 7th December 2010, 16:48   #214
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Would suggest buyers to send a message to the car manufacturers and only buy cars with both ABS and Airbags (min 2), There are options with both in the same / lower price band.
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Old 7th December 2010, 16:59   #215
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I think ABS + EBD + Airbags should be made mandatory across variants in all vehicles

Given that over the last 10 years the road infrastructure has improved considerably in India, the average travel speeds have also increased substantially.

Hence there should be NO COMPROMISE on safety features any longer.
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Old 8th December 2010, 10:45   #216
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Question Re: ABS or AIRBAGS- WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jyodi Backster View Post
Little off topic....
Do Airbags have a shelf life?
Do you need to replace the old Airbags with new after few years?

Interesting question, even I would like to know about the same.

IMO the airbags dont have a shelf life and are one time use. Once deployed they need to be replaced, hence no exact shelf life, neither can they be inspected and/or replaced coz no manufacturer includes them in their service interval check lists. Whereas ABS can be atleast tested whenever required.

BTW what does the law say in case of malfunctioning Airbags? What is manufacturer liable for incase of defective airbags?
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Old 8th December 2010, 10:54   #217
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Default Re: ABS or AIRBAGS- WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
Interesting question, even I would like to know about the same.

IMO the airbags dont have a shelf life and are one time use. Once deployed they need to be replaced, hence no exact shelf life, neither can they be inspected and/or replaced coz no manufacturer includes them in their service interval check lists. Whereas ABS can be atleast tested whenever required.

BTW what does the law say in case of malfunctioning Airbags? What is manufacturer liable for incase of defective airbags?
+1 to that.How do we test if the airbags are in perfect condition? Is there a possiblity that the sensors get jammed/defective?
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Old 8th December 2010, 10:55   #218
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Default Re: ABS or AIRBAGS- WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER ?

I think there was a discussion regarding the same sometimes back and IIRC someone did mention changing the whole dash maybe every 10 years (dash does contain the air-bags) and they perhaps have a shelf life.
(I may be horribly wrong here though).

As far as this thread goes, I would prefer both.
Airbags on all sides and not just for frontal collision.
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Old 8th December 2010, 11:19   #219
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Airbag components are designed to last atleast 15 years.
15+ year old airbags have been tested too for their deployments!

Most manufacturers usually recommend a check/inspect for airbags once every 3 years. this is mainly to check that the sensor and the electricals are working fine.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jyodi Backster View Post
Little off topic....
Do Airbags have a shelf life?
Do you need to replace the old Airbags with new after few years?
Quote:
Originally Posted by powertrain View Post
+1 to that.How do we test if the airbags are in perfect condition? Is there a possiblity that the sensors get jammed/defective?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheel View Post
I think there was a discussion regarding the same sometimes back and IIRC someone did mention changing the whole dash maybe every 10 years (dash does contain the air-bags) and they perhaps have a shelf life.
(I may be horribly wrong here though).
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
IMO the airbags dont have a shelf life and are one time use. Once deployed they need to be replaced, hence no exact shelf life, neither can they be inspected and/or replaced coz no manufacturer includes them in their service interval check lists.

BTW what does the law say in case of malfunctioning Airbags? What is manufacturer liable for incase of defective airbags?
Afaik, airbag suppliers request the OEMs to have the airbags checked once every 2/3 years, mainly to check the sensors and the electricals. The inflators & the charge are designed such a way that they can easily last 15 years.

Not sure about the manufacturer or insurer liability on airbags.

Last edited by mobike008 : 8th December 2010 at 14:15. Reason: back to back posts within 20 mins. Next time please use EDIT button
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Old 8th December 2010, 12:29   #220
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Default Re: ABS or AIRBAGS- WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER ?

Hi,

Today, most small cars have ABS, EBD and Air-bags as option. But, how many customers are known to have opted for them? Even car-sales guys are heard advising customers on avoiding these crucial safety features and using the money saved on fancy accessories

However, these safety features have been in existence since years now. Its a real shame that auto-manufacturers have not yet come around to offering these as standard across all models, at-least the ABS and the EBD, for starters. Agreed on the air-bags though, that these are a single-use feature and their high replacement cost acts as a deterrent.

At the risk of being charged with "wishful thinking", I think it is time for our home-grown manufacturers (with their low-cost development strengths) to put their hand up and make this dream into reality.

As for this thread, I'll take ABS before Air-Bags.
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Old 8th December 2010, 15:42   #221
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Default Re: ABS or AIRBAGS- WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER ?

IMHO, saying that "I'll choose one feature over the other" is as good as saying "I'll rather be shot, than being hanged".

Anti-lock Braking System
This video shows the benefits of ABS: .

Airbags
Watch this video which shows the crash test of a vehicle without airbags

and this video which shows the crash test with airbags

Hope you saw what happens to the occupants, even in a strong car like palio.

Here is another video showing the safe usage of airbags:


The ABS & the airbags are not the same safety feature that you can choose one over the other. Please don't compromise, ever more so because there are other choices which offer both the safety features.

Last edited by Abes : 8th December 2010 at 15:43.
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Old 8th December 2010, 22:14   #222
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Default Re: ABS or AIRBAGS- WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER ?

Excellent videos,Abes. If these videos help change the mind of even 1 bhpian,who would have gone for a non ABS+AIRBAG car, it'll be worth it !!!!!!!!

Last edited by Technocrat : 9th December 2010 at 03:23. Reason: Please avoid quoting long posts especially when they are on same page, thanks
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Old 9th December 2010, 02:13   #223
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Default Re: ABS or AIRBAGS- WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER ?

Airbags and the strength of the car

Makes no difference. Or if it does, you would be better off in a "weaker" car which absorbed more of the energy --- which might well be by design, rather than a weakness.

Whole point is that, when your vehicle suddenly stops, you don't. Be it a Bentley or a M800, you carry on at the speed you were doing before until you hit something.

Of course, if the car is so flimsy, or the accident so bad, that the steering wheel and dashboard are being pushed back into you, the arguments suddenly cease to matter...
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Old 9th December 2010, 05:29   #224
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Default Re: ABS or AIRBAGS- WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
Airbags and the strength of the car

Makes no difference. Or if it does, you would be better off in a "weaker" car which absorbed more of the energy --- which might well be by design, rather than a weakness.

Whole point is that, when your vehicle suddenly stops, you don't. Be it a Bentley or a M800, you carry on at the speed you were doing before until you hit something.

Of course, if the car is so flimsy, or the accident so bad, that the steering wheel and dashboard are being pushed back into you, the arguments suddenly cease to matter...
Yes, you are absolutely right. I just used the term 'strong car' as I remember reading in some fiat/palio threads that they are built like tanks.
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Old 9th December 2010, 07:49   #225
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Default Re: Would you like to have ABS and Airbags

ABS is an absolute must. Just drive on Kerala Highways and you will see why. Extremely slippery highways passing through thickly populated areas. And it rains here every second day. Personally had 2 bad incidents. My Next car surely would have ABS.

Driver Airbag should be made mandatory. Without any increase in vehicle price. .
But the problem is that even on expensive cars I see people not wearing seatbelts, which negates the use of the AirBag.
If price was a constraint I may not tick the Airbag in the options list. But ABS is totally a must have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by shankar.balan View Post
Given that over the last 10 years the road infrastructure has improved considerably in India, the average travel speeds have also increased substantially.
Have you visited Kerala in the near future. From BAD it has gone to worse.
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