Historically car safety hasn't been a strong point for the Indian automotive market place. However, massive strides have been made recently towards improving safety on the roads. Airbags and ABS have been rapidly proliferating throughout segments at the moment as all new cars introduced to our market must meet more stringent crash test norms. By the following year, all existing cars will also be required to meet these norms. Other safety features, like reverse parking sensors and speed reminders, are set to become standard as well.
In an interesting announcement at the ongoing SIAM annual conference, Nitin Gadkari Minister for Road and Highway Transport said, “By 2022, we will work on a mandate on bringing Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS) in all cars.”
Currently manufactures like Volvo and Mercedes do offer advanced assistance systems like adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assistance and automatic braking. However, their use on our roads remains very limited as these systems rely heavily on proper road signs and markings, as well as good surface conditions. It remains to be seen now how manufacturers will bring this technology to lower segments and the impact it will have on pricing. How the quickly will the government will be able to build necessary infrastructure required for these system to work effectively, also remains to be seen.