NEW DELHI: Five popular passenger car models in India failed the crash test for adult safety and were rated with zero stars by vehicle safety group Global Global New Car Assessment Programme (Global NCAP).
The UK-based group tested the Renault Kwid, Maruti Suzuki Celerio, Maruti Suzuki Eeco, Mahindra Scorpio and Hyundai Eon and all showed low levels of adult occupant protection. The Renault Kwid was tested in three versions, including one with airbags, but each was rated as zero stars for adult safety.
“The latest Safer Cars for India results continue to disappoint with all five models rated as zero star and shows how important it is for cars to have a body shell that can remain stable in a crash. This is an absolutely crucial pre-requisite for occupant safety together with fitment at least of front air bags. ,” said David Ward, Secretary General of Global NCAP.
Mahindra Scorpio, Kwid and Hyundai Eon scored two stars in child occupant protection while Maruti Suzuki Celerio and Eeco got one star.
Indian government has announced that front and side crash test regulation for existing cars will come into effect from October 2017 for new cars and 2019 for existing.
“Legislative action is needed to ensure that the minimum levels of occupant protection recommended by the United Nations are guaranteed for Indian consumers. But manufacturers don’t have to wait for legislation and we urge them to act to eliminate all zero star cars from production as soon as possible,” he said.
Ward said that it is very surprising that a manufacturer like Renault introduced the Kwid initially lacking this essential feature.
“Global NCAP strongly believes that no manufacturer anywhere in the world should be developing new models that are so clearly sub-standard. Car makers must ensure that their new models pass the UN’s minimum crash test regulations, and support use of an airbag,” he added.
All four companies whose products have received a zero rating from the test have responded with statements that their products meet requirements mandated by Indian authorities and that safety is a priority. The GNCAP conducts tests at speeds and with standards a lot higher than those mandated by even US and European standards.