"Safety still an option" in India - Global NCAP
Limited progress from the Renault Kwid and an encouraging showing from the Honda Mobilio are the latest results for Global NCAP for vehicles sold in India but the organisation said: "However overall disappointment as safety is still considered an option and not a standard."
New crash test results from Global NCAP include the latest and highest safety level version of the Renault Kwid as well as two versions - with and without airbags - of the Honda Mobilio.
Results for India's 'car of the year', the Renault Kwid, "surprised and disappointed Global NCAP", it said. After poor results earlier this year, and following Renault's latest set of improvements, the Kwid was assessed again in the frontal impact test and the model still offers just one star for adult occupant protection.
In its standard version, the Renault Kwid is offered without airbags and has been tested by Global NCAP in the past. The basic version of the car scored zero stars for adult occupant protection and two stars for child occupant protection. The latest version and the most highly equipped safety levels, includes an airbag only for the driver and a seatbelt pretensioner for the driver's seat. During the test this version still showed high chest deflection, explaining the one star rating in the driver seat.
The Honda Mobilio was tested in the basic version showing a stable structure and zero stars for adult occupant protection. Honda requested Global NCAP to test a unit with double airbags in order to show the benefits of these safety systems, the car achieved three stars for adult occupant protection.
David Ward, secretary general of Global NCAP said: "Renault has made limited progress, they should be offering their one star car as the standard version not an option. Honda too have shown that with two airbags they can achieve three stars. These safety systems should not be options.
"Renault and Honda make safe cars in other markets, they have the know how to make all their Indian cars much safer. We expect them to start doing so now."
Rohit Baluja, president of the Institute of Road Traffic Education said: "The automobile industry in India is fast progressing, however safety systems approach is not yet a priority. The customers are not yet aware how safe are the cars they are purchasing in case they meet up with frontal crashes when at higher speeds. In these tests both Honda and Renault have demonstrated that they can offer safer cars to the Indian market. Automobile manufacturers should not enhance safety features as an option rather, safety should be an uncompromising standard."