Maruti may stop selling small cars like Alto and Celerio, know the reason

Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) Chairman RC Bhargava said that the cost of entry-level cars will increase after modifications in the design to include 4 airbags, which will adversely affect the sales of entry-level cars.

Maruti may stop selling small cars like Alto and Celerio, know the reason

The Government of India is constantly striving to improve the safety features of the vehicles sold in the country. Recently, the central government is preparing to implement a new rule to make 6 airbags mandatory in all passenger vehicles in the country from October 1, 2022. This will not only improve the safety of the passengers but will also reduce the number of casualties in road accidents. But some automakers of the country are unhappy with this decision of the government.

Recently, the Minister of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) Nitin Gadkari announced that he has approved the draft GSR (General Statutory Rules) notification for India NCAP or New Car Assessment Programme. Like other car crash reports across the world, the Bharat NCAP crash test will give a star rating to the cars based on the vehicle’s performance. This will give a star rating to the vehicles sold in the country, so that the customers will be able to understand to what extent the said vehicle is safe in the event of an accident or crash.

Maruti Suzuki objected to the government’s decision:

The central government is preparing to improve the safety of passengers in vehicles with both these rules. But the country’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki has objected to both these decisions. Maruti Suzuki says the government needs to reconsider its decision to make 6 airbags mandatory in vehicles. This will almost end the future of small cars. Maruti Suzuki has argued that the inclusion of 6 airbags in smaller and cheaper cars will increase their price and this segment is already suffering from sales and the higher price will further affect it.

Maruti Suzuki, on the other hand, has opposed making Bharat NCAP norms mandatory for all cars sold in the country. Hours after Union Minister Nitin Gadkari approved the India NCAP (or New Car Assessment Program) safety rating program – Maruti Suzuki Chairman RC Bhargava in his statement to the media said, “Bharat NCAP is the most widely sold vehicle in the country. Should not be mandatory for all cars, India is different from the European market. We cannot follow the road safety guidelines of Europe, we must see what can be done to provide better transport for two wheelers. ”

Sales of cars like Alto will stop:

Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) Chairman RC Bhargava said that the cost of entry-level cars will increase after modifications in the design to include 4 airbags, which will be financially impractical for the company, as it will increase sales. will have an adverse effect on Therefore, the company will not hesitate to exit the small car market, that is, it is possible that the company may stop production and sales of its small cars such as Alto 800, Celerio, S-Presso and Eco models.

What Nitin Gadkari says:

At the same time, the Union Road Transport Minister, Nitin Gadkari has not considered the protest of some manufacturers to be right. They believe that opposing 6 airbags and mandatory Bharat NCAP rating reflects a dual mindset. He further said, some car manufacturers offer top safety features and 6 airbags in export-specific cars, but they do not include these features and standards in the cars sold in India. In fact, Gadkari wants the same safety features for cars sold in India as export-spec cars, that is, vehicles exported abroad. Earlier, the Union Minister had told Parliament that if all cars had 6 airbags in 2020, around 13,000 lives could have been saved.

Apart from automakers, the Automotive Component Manufacturers Association (ACMA) has also written to the ministry that they can meet the additional demand for airbags, but it would require a time frame of 12-18 months to scale up local production. The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers has asked the ministry to “review and reconsider” this 6 airbag regulation, stating that “side and curtain airbags are not mandatory anywhere in the world”.

What is the current rule:

As of today, it is a rule to include dual airbags (2 airbags) as standard in all cars in India, which is as per the order passed by the government a few years back. In this, one airbag is for the driver and the other for the co-driver i.e. co-passenger sitting in the front seat. There are cars in India that come with 6 airbags, but this has not been made mandatory yet, leading automakers to include this feature in top models of their vehicles, etc.

Now with the new rule, the Indian government is making 6 airbags mandatory for all cars in India from October 2022. This will not only make cars more expensive but will also add to difficulties especially for companies manufacturing small vehicles.

By how much can 6 Airbags increase the cost of cars:

Currently, 2 airbags are being provided in cars and according to the new rule, when 4 more airbags will be included in them, then it is bound to increase the price of the cars. Carrying out a feasibility study of adding additional airbags, Maruti says that the cost of its entry-level models may see an increase of up to Rs 60,000 as it would require some structural changes in the design. However, this costing may vary from model to model, as it depends on the design of the vehicle and the changes to be made.

READ ALSO | 2022 Maruti Brezza will knock for the first time with 12 new features, here is the full list of features

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