Car safety has always been an issue in India. We believe, this issue is being addressed, and by 2017 the government's vehicle safety norms will be place. Maruti Suzuki and many other global manufacturers have been in the spotlight for their cars failing crash safety test.
However, Maruti Suzuki is looking at introducing features like airbags and anti-lock braking system as an optional feature in mass market models. The company is working on enhancing safety features. Their newly launched S-Cross and upcoming Baleno hatchback is being provided with airbags and anti-lock braking system. And soon, entry-level variants of Maruti's models, including Alto800 and AltoK10, is going to be offered with safety features as an option, keeping in mind the price sensitivity of the segment.
Safety features being offered is good news; however, we would have preferred if manufacturers are providing airbags and anti-lock braking system as a standard safety feature across all variants. A good example of safety features being offered across all variants is the all-new Ford Figo. Manufacturers like Toyota and Volkswagen also now offer safety features as standard across its range of vehicles.
On the global front, India currently accounts for one of the highest number of road accidents. The government has taken notice and is working to roll out stringent safety norms, wherein, all new cars will have to undergo mandatory crash tests from October 2017. The crash test will be carried out by The Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) in Chakan, Pune.