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Old 6th June 2010, 21:19   #16
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You cannot blame the manufacturers alone. it is a kind of cultural madness.

Manufacturers respond to the market and to demand. They will not provide options, even, if they are not going to sell enough to make it worthwhile, let alone standard equipment.

Consider this question: If seat belts were optional extras, how many car buyers, in India, would order them with the car? Seat belts are the primary safety device, and yet, it is obvious that they are unwanted. Same applies to bike helmets.

In areas where helmet and seat belt use is relatively common, I suggest that it is because of law, not because of safety conciousness.

First must come Education.
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Old 6th June 2010, 21:45   #17
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All safety equipments like seat belts, airbag, ABS has to be made mandatory, they should not be optional. should be provided across all variants.
when safety consciousness is not good enough, en number of awareness not helping. even educated people throw rules to the air.( eg most drink and driving cases reported in newspaper). i feel enforcing the law strictly is the only option, and safety equipment has to be mandatory. with my limited knowledge in this regard i respect volvo for all the safety needs they address.
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Old 6th June 2010, 23:44   #18
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My take on this is, 3 factors here:

1. Costs. I guess this is valid, nothing can be done. I would rather have cars reachable to the common man, than all cars having ABS + airbags at prohibitive base prices. Reason: Any car is much, much safer than the whole family traveling on a two-wheeler, with the lady perched in a silly one-sided position.

2. Discouragement from dealer/company - for example, Swift. The dealer discourages you from going with an ABS option because it "will take more time". If you insist on an ABS option, you can clearly see a reluctance from the dealer and his pro-activeness is getting the car soon, is all gone! By all means, the dealer should be upselling ABS, airbags etc. Root cause: Some short supply from the company Maruti has subcontracted ABS to, no dealer margin, whatever.

3. Mindset - after taking the pain and hours of time to try and explain to my family about importance of seat belt, they refuse to wear it no matter what . They think I am being freaky or geeky or whatever, that wearing seat belt is about showing "car enthusiast" attitude or firangi attitude. To top it all off, they make fun of me wearing it - even today, went out with my family to buy some groceries and of course I got in the car and immediately put on my seat belt. They thought this is ridiculous and made fun of me for wearing it! This same attitude extends to ABS and airbags too. In my office, whenever someone buys a car loaded with safety features, others make fun and say "he is planning to crash the car so he is ready for it" etc. It is a thankless task to try to educate so many people.


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Old 7th June 2010, 00:06   #19
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I don't know how many times I have told this in this forum.
Safety DOES NOT sell in India. Want examples of ignorant mindset, don't look further than this thread; you'll get the answer. Many blame the dealers, the manufacturers, the government etc. Does anyone blame the buyer? No! If there is demand, surely all will comply. But majority of Indian buyers are plain ignorant when it comes to the car, let alone safety. How many times have we heard that we don't need seat belts or airbags or ABS in Indian driving conditions? How many trucks in India are still running with the under-run bars/beams? How many people in India have lost their driving license owing to drunken driving and killing innocent people? Mostly no one! Safety, what safety?
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Old 7th June 2010, 09:48   #20
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Airbags and ABS are NOT 'good to have features' - they are life savers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gendarmee View Post
Its always good to have it on the car, making it standard would mean increasing the base price of the car...

Then people should buy the base model with more price.


But do we really need them?

YES we do

One who goes once in a while on the highway...or drives often on the highway def needs them. Most of us driving in the city move around at less than 50Km/hr

try banging into a wall while moving at 50kmph, and please let me know the aftermath.


and a crash is more of a brush or a jab, as in , seat belts do take care of that....I know a guy who's car's airbags got activated in an auto-car crash and he got hurt on the face and burnt on the face, the air bag made him suffer more than the actual accident!

because that guy, I am 99% sure, was not wearing seatbelts - otherwise the pre tensioners in the seatbelts would have done its job by tightly restraining him and not allowing the airbags to blast in his face.

!
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Old 7th June 2010, 10:01   #21
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Originally Posted by blackasta View Post
because that guy, I am 99% sure, was not wearing seatbelts - otherwise the pre tensioners in the seatbelts would have done its job by tightly restraining him and not allowing the airbags to blast in his face.
That's a good point. Airbags are called SRS - Secondary Restraint System. They work best when people are using the Primary Restraint System - the seat belts.
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Old 7th June 2010, 10:35   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post

3. Mindset - after taking the pain and hours of time to try and explain to my family about importance of seat belt, they refuse to wear it no matter what . They think I am being freaky or geeky or whatever, that wearing seat belt is about showing "car enthusiast" attitude or firangi attitude. To top it all off, they make fun of me wearing it - even today, went out with my family to buy some groceries and of course I got in the car and immediately put on my seat belt. They thought this is ridiculous and made fun of me for wearing it! This same attitude extends to ABS and airbags too. In my office, whenever someone buys a car loaded with safety features, others make fun and say "he is planning to crash the car so he is ready for it" etc. It is a thankless task to try to educate so many people.
You are not alone dude, wearing seat-belts is almost non-existent among non-enthusiasts. I convince my parents, but they are not quite comfortable wearing it..

Weekend I had one of my friend from Australia traveling in my car, He wasn't wearing a seat belt, I asked isn't it compulsory down under, he said yes but still did not bother wearing.

The law should enforce it strictly, that is how one gets to wear the belts.
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Old 7th June 2010, 10:44   #23
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I don't know how many of you remember it , I was in primary school some time in 80s when Rajiv Gandhi government mandated Schooters and 2 wheelers to have Side indicators and there was a lot of halabloo by the duopoly of Bajaj and LML and with certain grace period it was implemented.

Similarly when Supreme Court mandated seat belts manufacturers started providing them before this HM and PAL were happily selling cars for decades with out this simple device.

I am sure once ABS and Airbags are mandated manufacturers will fall in line and also prices will rationalize over period of time.

Honda , Toyota and Suzuki are selling models with Airbags and ABS outside india at much cheaper price. All that talk of tax is hubris because taxes in India today are quite in line with most of the developed countries .
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Old 7th June 2010, 10:54   #24
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At the risk of sounding callous, may I join the discussion by saying that ABS, seat-belts and airbags may not be empirically proved beyond doubt to be key elements of passenger safety? Better driving skills, good roads, vehicles with better body control and steering response, and most of all, TRAFFIC CONDITIONS and your TYRES have more significant roles than ABS, seat- belts and airbags. Just read the user manual of ABS equipped vehicles: they all warn that ABS does not reduce stopping distances. For that, you need more expensive systems like Emergency Brake Assist. Try the braking distance of an ABS equipped vehicle with poor tyres or even poor wheel alignment.

Seat belts are useful in most occasions, but sometimes do harm or get in the way of rescue. Their usefulness for children are already controversial. Look at the 2 decade old British legislation making seatbelts mandatory for children. And, all those 6 or 8 airbags you have might not deploy under certain conditions- I lost a friend who was thrown off his car when the doors unlocked automatically after his car tipped over, and not a single one of the car's 6 airbags ever deployed after the crash!

Forum members who have some spare time, please do a search on the web. You can find any number of studies including those from frontline Universities and think- tanks which have found the actual effectiveness of such features debatable. Please don't skin me for what I've said ! in advance!
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Old 7th June 2010, 11:02   #25
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Unless mandated by legislation , I dont think ABS and Airbags are ever going to be seen in our mass market car.

Atleast they should make it mandatory for all manufacturers to offer them as cost options on all trim levels.

I agree with Rajushank here, even dealers actively discourage people from buying the version with safety features standard stating lack of availability and other such reasons.

For eg : I would have happily gone for even a Swift Lxi with ABS and airbags as everything else that comes with a high end variant can easily be added aftermarket.
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Old 7th June 2010, 11:25   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sajo View Post
Unless mandated by legislation , I dont think ABS and Airbags are ever going to be seen in our mass market car.

Atleast they should make it mandatory for all manufacturers to offer them as cost options on all trim levels.

I agree with Rajushank here, even dealers actively discourage people from buying the version with safety features standard stating lack of availability and other such reasons.

For eg : I would have happily gone for even a Swift Lxi with ABS and airbags as everything else that comes with a high end variant can easily be added aftermarket.
It is funny how every car(except nano) comes with a headlamp leveller which 99.99% people never bother to use, seatbelts which most average Joes consider to be as offensive a device as compulsory sterilization, built, to cause discomfort to the passengers of a car, while others drive with the head restraints removed, as if they're driving a sofa, value ORVMs more than safety & fold both of them. So I think that's why car companies offer 'daredevil' models.

I would've definitely gone for ABS, Airbag, Traction control in my Alto even if it was priced 50k more. My next car will have all boxes ticked is what I'm hoping to achieve.
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Old 7th June 2010, 11:53   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arunforu1 View Post
Simple reason it is not provided as STD parts is, because IT IS NOT ENFORCED BY CMVR rules in India.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sajo View Post
Unless mandated by legislation , I dont think ABS and Airbags are ever going to be seen in our mass market car.
Fully agreed. Even in Europe such features are offered because the law requires them. ABS became compulsory in Europe with effect from 1 January 2005.

Last edited by directinjection : 7th June 2010 at 11:54.
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Old 7th June 2010, 13:08   #28
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I think in cars below 5L, only Nissan Micra has Airbag even in base variant
In cars below 10L, Honda City (EMT) which is the base variant has ABS as well as Airbags
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Old 7th June 2010, 13:38   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeldo View Post
I lost a friend who was thrown off his car when the doors unlocked automatically after his car tipped over, and not a single one of the car's 6 airbags ever deployed after the crash!
A simple question; was your friend wearing seat belts? From your description, it seems like he was not. If this is the case, the car did exactly what it was designed for. In most modern cars, airbags do not deploy if you are not belted in, as airbags are SRS - Supplemental Restraint System. If you are not belted in, the deployment of airbags can cause more damage.
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Old 7th June 2010, 15:12   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeldo View Post
At the risk of sounding callous, may I join the discussion by saying that ABS, seat-belts and airbags may not be empirically proved beyond doubt to be key elements of passenger safety?
Seat belts definitely save life and avoid major injury. They also keep people's faces undamaged in lesser collisions. Perhaps the more vane (vain? what a silly language I speak!) of drivers and passengers might contemplate that.
Quote:
Better driving skills, good roads, vehicles with better body control and steering response, and most of all, TRAFFIC CONDITIONS and your TYRES have more significant roles than ABS, seat- belts and airbags.
Let me rewrite that:

good roads, vehicles with better body control and steering response, traffic conditions, your tyres, but most of all BETTER DRIVING SKILLS ...

Ultimately, the responsibility is ours, the driver's --- not the car manufacturer, the road builder, or the other drivers on the roads.

Quote:
Just read the user manual of ABS equipped vehicles: they all warn that ABS does not reduce stopping distances. For that, you need more expensive systems like Emergency Brake Assist. Try the braking distance of an ABS equipped vehicle with poor tyres or even poor wheel alignment.
There is widespread ignorance as to what ABS is for, and what it does, and we can see in other threads that even Team-BHPians are not immune.

Quote:
Seat belts are useful in most occasions, but sometimes do harm or get in the way of rescue. Their usefulness for children are already controversial.
With respect, (people who say that are always about to be rude ) --- dangerous rubbish! Nothing can be made to take account of every conceivable vaguely possible situation. The seat belt remains the single biggest life saver.
Quote:
Look at the 2 decade old British legislation making seatbelts mandatory for children.
Yes? What do you have to say about it? Seat belts are mandatory for everyone in British cars. You have made a statement with no point here: allow me to make a statement with a point: Look at road death rates in UK: then look at the same in India.

Quote:
Please don't skin me for what I've said ! in advance!
Hope you don't think I skinned you . I certainly tried to skin the arguments!
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