NISSAN’S Datsun Go and Maruti’s Swift have failed the crash tests conducted by Global New Car Assessment Programme (NCAP), an independent testing agency. Global NCAP conducted the 64kmph frontal collision test for both the cars placing dummies as passengers.
Nissan’s Datsun Go scored zero stars for adult occupant protection and just two stars for child occupant protection. The structure of the car collapsed in the crash and was rated as unstable. The driver’s head made a direct contact with the steering wheel and dashboard as there were no airbags.
The structure of Maruti’s Swift too showed signs of collapsing in the crash and was rated as unstable with zero stars for adult occupant protection and just one star for child occupant protection. Fitting the airbags would improve occupant protection. Both the cars demonstrate a high risk of life-threatening injuries.
Global NCAP Chairman Max Mosley said, “India has the potential to be a world leader in the automobile industry but Indian consumers are not aware of how unsafe they would be in case of a crash. That is why we are pleased that India is launching an NCAP consumer testing programme. This would be a step forward for safety but regulations based on the UN’s minimum crash test standards are also needed. If this happens every new car sold in India would have a proper crash structure and airbags.”
Global NCAP Secretary General David Ward commented, “We welcome the initiative of the Indian government to launch its own NCAP and recommend that this positive step is combined with the application of the UN regulations for frontal and side impact. Prompt action like this would prevent the introduction of brand new models like the Datsun Go which has a body structure so weak that is pointless to fit an airbag. It is disappointing to see a global company like Nissan launch a new car design in 2014 that so clearly falls below UN safety standards. This runs counter to the objectives of the UN Decade of Action.”
Earlier also some of the best selling cars like Maruti Alto 800, Tata Nano, Ford Figo, Hyundai i10 and Volkswagen Polo had failed the Global NCAP crash tests showing high risk of life-threatening injuries in road accidents.
Rohit Baluja, President of the Institute of Road Traffic Education (IRTE) said, “Consumers are not yet aware of the safety aspects of the vehicle they purchase. The consumer believes that the automobiles they are purchasing meet the best safety standards. While deciding to purchase the vehicle the consumer does not yet consider safety as a deciding parameter. This awareness needs to be created. It must be the responsibility of both the vehicle manufacturer and seller to provide this information to the consumer and make this aspect the basis of marketing. Referring to The Prime Minister’s campaign ‘Make in India’, the call is ‘not just make in India, but make the highest quality of products in India which match the best of global standards.”