From October 1st, All Cars Must have Six Airbags

According to a previously approved draught notification, starting October 1, 2022, all new cars will have six airbags.

Nitin Gadkari, the Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, has confirmed that all new cars sold in India will soon come standard with six airbags. The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways approved a draught notification in January making six airbags mandatory in cars with an eight-person capacity.

  • Cars will mandatorily be equipped with 6 airbags from October 1
  • Additional airbags expected to increase costs by at least Rs 50,000
  • Current models and variants offering 6 airbags cost upward of Rs 10 lakh

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The plan’s timeline was not specified in the recent announcement, but the draught notification stated that new cars will be required to comply with the updated safety standards beginning October 1, 2022.

From October 1st, All Cars Must have Six Airbags
From October 1st, All Cars Must have Six Airbags

Airbags are required by law, According to a Draught Notification

M1 category vehicles (those that seat up to eight passengers and weigh less than 3.5 tonnes) manufactured after October 1, 2022 will be equipped with two front side airbags and two curtain airbags, according to a draught notification dated January 14, 2022. Compliance with AIS-099, as amended from time to time, shall be verified until the corresponding Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) specifications are notified under the Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 2016. (11 of 2016).

In India, Vehicle Safety is a Priority

Until recently, India’s automotive safety standards were not the best. Several safety features, including a driver-side airbag, became mandatory only on April 1, 2019. From January 1, 2022, passenger airbags were required.

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Additional airbags, according to the government, will make cars safer. While this is true, additional airbags are expected to raise car prices by at least Rs 50,000. Also, cars without side and curtain airbags in any variant will require modifications to the body shell as well as interior trim and fittings in order for the airbags to deploy safely and effectively. Car prices would rise even more as a result of this. It’s also worth noting that the stricter regulations coming with the second phase of CAFE and BS6 emission standards in 2022-2023 will drive up car prices even more.

From October 1st, All Cars Must have Six Airbags
From October 1st, All Cars Must have Six Airbags

Some car manufacturers, such as Renault-Nissan, do not currently offer six airbags in any of their vehicles. Other brands, on the other hand, only offer six airbags in models and variants that cost more than Rs 10 lakh. The Kia Carens is a notable exception in this price range, as it comes standard with six airbags in all trim levels.

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The move is unlikely to excite the auto industry, but it could be a significant step forward in crash safety. “Our crash test results clearly show how airbags help prevent fatal and serious injuries, and the new rules are most welcome,” said David Ward, executive president of Global NCAP, in a note to Autocar India.

Side-impact tests are set to be included in the organization’s #SaferCarsForIndia project, which could help automakers earn higher Global NCAP ratings.

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