Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister of Road Transport & Highways, has just confirmed the news to make 6 airbags standard for all cars in India. It is expected to be implemented by October this year; till now, dual front airbags have been necessary on all cars. Let’s look at the details:
After this new law, all cars that can seat up to 8 people must have 6 airbags regardless of price or segment. This might be tough for manufacturers such as Maruti Suzuki, who have a majority of their sales due to entry-level cars.
Usually, the cost of adding an airbag can range from ₹6,000-₹10,000, and adding 4 extra airbags in the upcoming vehicles can naturally result in a price hike. This hike can be between ₹35,000-₹65,000, depending on the brand & model, respectively.
In addition to the cost of the airbags, some manufacturers will have to reconsider the car’s structure & design to accommodate the extra airbags. As some small cars might not be spacious enough to fit 6-airbags. This will further increase the required time and development costs if they have to make custom fits.
Will This Make Cars Safer?
While this added safety will come with a price hike, but it will increase the chances of survival during accidents. A little price hike is nothing as there is no amount of money compared to a human life saved. All cars come with dual airbags as standard; after implementation, there will be two rear curtain airbags at the rear, too, making a total of 6 airbags as required.
In addition to the added safety in cars, norms like this also indicate the government’s concern and focus on road & safety issues. New highways & roads are already being built, and safer cars will ensure better road traveling. We can also expect more new safety norms in the same direction to make the cars better.
The rising awareness of vehicle safety is reaping results, and norms such as mandating 6-airbags will help in saving lives. Before this, buyers had to choose the top variant if they wanted the extra airbags. Now the government will ensure that every car running on the road is safe.