The latest crash tests conducted in India show once again an upsetting pattern from automakers as far as safety is concerned in emerging markets.
The latest Indian crash test results from Global NCAP, the vehicle safety organization that works with governments and new car assessment programmes, have been released this week in Delhi and continue to reveal that many automakers, the big ones included, are heavy cutting on safety costs to keep the prices down on emerging markets. All the five cars recently tested in India have been rated with zero stars. The Renault Kwid, Maruti Suzuki Celerio, Maruti Suzuki Eeco, Mahindra Scorpio and Hyundai Eon all showed very poor levels of protection for adult passengers. Renault’s small Kwid SUV, which costs around 4,000 dollars in India, was tested in three versions, including one with airbags, but each and every one received no stars for adult safety.
Global NCAP said it first tested the standard version of the Kwid without airbags, for Renault to offer afterwards some safety improvements of the structure for a reevaluation for an early April production model. The new Kwid without airbags as standard scored again zero stars in the adult occupant protection and two stars in child safety, while the third test – with a driver airbag fitted this time – showed no improvement of the ratings. Four versions of the Kwid have been produced with different safety features, with the fourth only recently released and yet to be tested by Global NCAP, the organization said.
A similar story is happening in South America, where Global NCAP urged last month General Motors to urgently improve its cars in the region, after the Chevrolet Sail sold in Colombia received zero stars, thus repeating a similar result of the Chevrolet Aveo in Mexico.