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  • Safest Cars In India In 2018

    At the 2018 NDTV Auto Expo Awards, Global NCAP had made an announcement regarding the ‘Safer Choice’ awards that will be conferred to Indian cars that adhere to the highest levels of safety on the basis of NCAP ratings. The NCAP has been scoring the cars made in India in the past few years and most of them got scores between 0 and 4 stars. The car with the highest rating, i.e., the 5-star rating, will be the recipient of the ‘Safer Choice’ award. None of the mass market cars made in India have attained the 5-star rating at the global NCAP tests as of now.

    Safest Cars in India

    What Is The NCAP Safety Test?

    Global NCAP is a UK based company that targets the promotion of public health and safety and consumer-oriented safety in vehicles. The organisation has designed several parameters to assess the safety quotient of cars. NCAP also conducts tests to verify the same. Some of the most popular tests from NCAP are the crash tests that evaluate the structural stability of a vehicle. The crash test also reviews the type of impact an average person would be subjected to at the time of a collision.

    The comprehensive crash test scenario created for evaluating these parameters is a highlight of the programme. Cars from different countries are tested for safety at the ADAC facility in Germany.

    The results of the NCAP test conducted recently has been all over the news. Some cars made in India have passed the tests, scoring up to 4 stars, indicating that Indian auto manufacturers have the capability and technology needed to produce super-safe cars within India.

    Made-In-India Cars That Scored Big At The NCAP Test:

    Some of the cars manufactured in India that received top scores at the NCAP tests are listed below for your reference:

    1. Toyota Etios Liva - 4 stars at the global NCAP test
    2. The Toyota Etios Liva may well be one of the cheapest cars in India with the best safety features. Apart from the fact that it is the least-priced model from the stable of Toyota in the Indian automobile scene, it managed to score 4 stars in the NCAP safety test conducted at a global level. The car scored 4 stars in the measure for adult protection and 2 stars for child protection. It should be noted that the Liva has dual airbags as standard.

    3. Volkswagen Polo - 4 stars at the global NCAP test
    4. In the second NCAP test that Volkswagen Polo was subjected to, the vehicle recorded a 4-star rating. The hiccups that the car encountered in the initial tests were quickly addressed by the car manufacturer and the vehicle got dual airbags. The second NCAP test was taken after the addition of the airbags. The car scored 3 stars in the measure for child protection with 12.54 points out of 17. The interesting thing to note here is that the addition of airbags will not simply bring the score up. The body structure of the car should be stable and the vehicle should be able to withstand several types of forces.

    5. Volkswagen Vento - 5 stars at the ASEAN NCAP test
    6. The Volkswagen Vento has two star ratings for each variant of the car. The model without the Electronic Stability program (ESP) scored 4 stars while the one with ESP (1.2 TSi) received 5 stars at the ASEAN NCAP. It is known that the test parameters for the ASEAN NCAP ratings are slightly different from the global test. In the ASEAN NCAP test, the presence of ESP is mandated. Both variants of the car have scored 14.51 out of 16 in the measure of adult protection, indicating that both cars have strong and stable body structures.

    7. Mahindra XUV500 - 4 stars at the Australian NCAP test
    8. The vehicle is monocoque, which implies that it has a structure in which the chassis is integral to the body. The Australian NCAP tested the vehicle and gave it a 4-star rating. The model tested was the AWD version. The tests included side and frontal impact crashes. The XUV scored 16 points out of 16 in the side impact test, while it got only 10 points out of 16 in the frontal offset test. The total score of the vehicle was 26 points, out of the maximum 37 points.

    9. Hyundai Creta - 4 stars at the Latin NCAP test
    10. The Hyundai Creta is a highly successful car in the Indian SUV space. The car received a commendable rating of 4 stars at the Latin NCAP tests, scoring 15.57 points out of the total 17. The vehicle tested had dual airbags, similar to the Indian version. The Latin NCAP test revealed that the body shell of the vehicle is very stable and can handle extra loading.

    Other Cars In India With Attractive Safety Features:

    Following the interest garnered by the NCAP tests, several car manufacturers in India have started equipping their vehicles with the latest safety features. Some of these include:

    Ford Aspire and Figo:

    1. Airbags - Ford has started offering 6 airbags for the Aspire and Figo models, so that the rear seat passengers are protected from crashes.
    2. Perimeter Alarm - The perimeter alarm in the Figo and Aspire cars go off if there is an attempt to break in. The headlights and parking lamps will start flashing and the theft indicator will blink.
    3. ABS and EBD - The Aspire and Figo cars come with Hill Launch Assist (HLA) facility, along with ABS with EBD and Electronic Stability Program (ESP). This helps the driver when climbing a hill as he/she doesn’t have to worry about the rollback of the car.

    Volkswagen Polo:

    1. ABS - The Volkswagen Polo comes with ABS as standard among all its variants.
    2. Power windows - The car also has power windows that roll down automatically if the vehicle senses obstacles along its path.
    3. Other features - The dual airbags offered by the Volkswagen Polo, engine immobiliser, stop light that is mounted high, and auto dimming IRVM are prominent among the car’s safety equipments. Apart from these, the vehicle also has lane change indicators, rain sensing wipers, rear parking sensors, and speed sensing auto door locks.

    Hyundai i20:

    1. Dead pedal - The Hyundai i20 has ABS, dual airbags, and smart pedal as safety features. The smart pedal functionality ensures that if the brake and accelerator are pressed at the same time, the feature will apply only the brakes, overriding the accelerator. The headlights will be on at dusk and will turn off when there is sunlight. The power windows, on sensing obstacles, will roll down automatically as well.
    2. Other controls - The Hyundai i20 has controls that help in rear parking, low fuel indicator, reminder for seat belt, and engine immobiliser.

    The aforementioned cars are the safest you can get your hands on in 2018. In India, the safety regulations are not as strict as seen in the global markets. Crash tests are not usually conducted here as well. With the introduction of the safety guidelines from the government and the ‘Safer Choice’ awards from global NCAP, it is certain that car manufacturers will lay more focus on the security features of cars when creating their production models.

    News on Car Launches, Car Safety, Electric Vehicles

    • India’s first electric hyper car Vazirani Shul revealed in India

      The first completely electric Indian hypercar, Vazirani Shul, has been officially revealed today in India. This car has been crafted and produced by Vazirani Automotive supervised by co-founder and designer Chunky Vazirani. The Force India F1 Team which was formerly known as Shara Force India F1 Team and globally-renowned tyremaker Michelin have significant inputs in it’s built and design. Being designed with the help of a wind tunnel it features a light-weight but tough carbon-fiber tub chassis similar to that of BMW i8. Since this car is developed with regenerative technology, the battery pack can be charged even when the car is moving. However, the technical details of this hypercar are yet to be revealed by the manufacturer. The car which is designed in California is anticipated to be manufactured in the design studio of the company located there. The production version of the car is expected to be launched by 2020 to 2021.

      16 November 2018

    • 2018 Mercedes-Benz C Class Facelift version launched

      The facelift version of Mercedes-Benz C-Class has been launched recently. This is the first time in four years that this popular sedan has received a cosmetic update. The new 2018 C-Class has got a number of advanced technological improvements and features that will make it a tough competition among other models. The revamped C-Class has been launched only in the diesel version. However, the company has confirmed that the petrol variant will be following soon. The new facelift version is priced at Rs.40 lakh (ex-showroom) in India. As a matter of fact, the C-Class being an entry-level sedan was one of the highest-selling products for Mercedes-Benz both in India and foreign.

      12 November 2018

    • Tata Motors launches Nexon AMT at the NADA Auto Show

      Tata Motors recently launched the Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) version of its Nexon at the NADA Auto Show. It is available for sale in 19 authorised sales outlets across Nepal. The Nexon AMT has been priced at Rs.47.95 lakh NPR (Nepalese Rupee).

      Sujan Roy, Head of International Business, Passenger Vehicle Business Unit, Tata Motors said that they are aiming to tap a larger market and increase the market share in both Compact SUV and the AMT segment through the introduction of the LEVEL NEX product. The Nexon AMT comes with an intelligent transmission controller. This includes features such as anti-stall, kick-down, and fast off. These features help in optimising the automatic gear shifts and provides the best power output while overtaking manoeuvres or quick acceleration requirements. The turbocharged engine on the Nexon juices out about 110 PS of power. The car also offers the Smart Hill Assist feature and the Crawl function along with wearable PEPS Key. The standard safety features on the car include dual front airbags and Anti Braking System (ABS) with electronic brake-force distribution in all wheels. The dash of the car is set up with a 6.5-inch floating dash-top touchscreen infotainment system. This comes with next generation smartphone connectivity and voice alerts for warning functions.

      7 November 2018

    • Comparison Between Ciaz, Yaris, Verna, and City - Mid-Size Sedans of 2018

      Based on the specifications and features, Hyundai Verna, Toyota Yaris, 2018 Maruti Suzuki Ciaz Facelift, and Honda City can be compared as follows:

      Hyundai Verna

      Taking designing cue from the Hyundai Elantra, the Verna carries projector headlamps, LED daytime running lamps (DRLs), a chrome-accent grille, new LED tail lamps, a shark-fin antenna, and a sloping roofline. While this car has the option for 3 powertrains - 1.6-litre U2 CRDi VGT diesel engine, 1.6-litre Dual VTVT petrol, and 1.4-litre Kappa Dual VTVT petrol engine, it features a 6-speed manual or automatic transmission.

      Toyota Yaris

      In terms of exterior, the new Toyota Yaris features teardrop fog lights, rectangular stretched back headlights, an upgraded grille design, and abundant chrome finish. While the car offers ample space on the inside, it sports a muscular as well as curvy body that gives it a premium feel. This car carries a 1.5-litre, 4-cylinder, petrol engine mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox alongside a 7-step CVT (automatic transmission) that can produce 108 hp of maximum power.

      Honda City

      The Honda City has received a new design philosophy along with an upgraded fascia, auto folding door mirror, LED headlamps, LED DRLs, and R16 diamond-cut alloy wheels, a shark-fin antenna, ED stomp lamp, LED combi tail lamps, and a trunk lid spoiler. Available in 2 engine options, the 1.5-litre, i-DTEC diesel engine of the car comes mated with a 6-speed manual gearbox while the 1.5-litre, i-VTEC petrol engine has the option for a 5-speed manual or automatic CVT gearbox. The petrol engine can generate 119 bhp of power and 145 Nm of torque while the diesel engine produces 100 bhp of power and 200 Nm of torque.

      2018 Maruti Suzuki Ciaz Facelift

      Featuring a heavily designed front end, the 2018 Maruti Suzuki Ciaz Facelift sports a sharper look than its predecessor. The car is outfitted with LED projector auto headlamps, new LED tail lamps with a dynamic flow design, distinct brow-shaped DRLs, and 16-inch multi-spoke alloy wheels. While the 1.3-litre diesel engine of this car has been carried forward, it also gets a new 1.5-litre petrol engine along with a choice of manual and automatic transmission for both the engines. The new petrol engine can churn out 103 bhp of power and 138 Nm of torque while the diesel engine produces 89 bhp of power and 200 Nm of torque.

      2 November 2018

    • Hyundai Verna and Maruti Baleno to get competition from Kia cars

      Kia Motors is now in the process of developing a mid size sedan and a hatchback specifically for the Indian market. The company is looking to take on some of the established players in the market like Hyundai and Maruti Suzuki. It is expected that Kia Motors will launch the new sedan and hatchback soon after releasing the SUV based on the SP concept which was on display in the Auto Expo. The development of the sedan and hatchback, codenamed KP2 and KP1 will see the launch of the vehicles in India sometime in 2020. The entire lineup of cars of Kia was on display in the Auto Expo held in the month of February. The lineup included the Kia Rio, a hatchback that has dimensions similar to the Maruti Suzuki Baleno and Hyundai i20. The car is being offered in three petrol variants and one diesel variant option in the international markets. If Kia is planning to bring the Rio as the premium hatchback in the country, it is expected that the vehicle will most likely be powered by a 1.6 litre petrol engine. There is also a slight chance that the 1.2 litre petrol engine might be used in order to bring down the cost of the vehicle. The Kia Cerato has also been tested in India lately and this could be the sedan that will be brought in by Kia in India. The sedan will most likely compete with the Honda City, Hyundai Verna, and the Maruti Ciaz.

      30 October 2018

    • Volkswagen T-Cross expected to rival Hyundai Creta, new pictures revealed

      Volkswagen is all set to launch a number of SUVs and cars in India as part of their plans to improve their presence in the Indian market. The first vehicle to be part of this will be the Volkswagen T-Cross SUV. The T-Cross, which is expected to rival the Hyundai Creta in the country was recently spotted fully uncamouflaged in Brazil. The presence of no camouflage in the vehicle spotted in Brazil gave a clear picture of the design of the compact SUV before the official reveal of the car sometime at the end of this year. The T-Cross SUV has a lot of similarity to the T-Cross Breeze which on display in the 2016 Geneva Motor Show. The car however has a lot of SUV styling elements that will offer a lot of appeal to people who are looking at options other than the Hyundai Creta. The front comes with sleek headlamps that will be joined by a grille that has three horizontal slats. The car has an increased wheelbase length and is very noticeable from the sides of the SUV. The size of the rear door is larger than the T-Cross selling in Europe. A less tapered roofline to go with the larger rear door improves the space for the passengers at the rear. The T-Cross has large tail lamps with LED elements and will come with a spoiler on the roof of the vehicle. The SUV from Volkswagen is set to launch in India sometime in 2020. The car will rival the Hyundai Creta, Tata Harrier, and other cars in the same range.

      26 October 2018

    • Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross likely to release in India in 2020

      Mitsubishi have taken a while to release products in India. It is all now expected to change as the company is now planning to release the Eclipse Cross after the launch of the Outlander by Mitsubishi India. The Eclipse Cross is a five seat SUV that has already been on sale abroad. The managing director of Mitsubishi India recently confirmed that the Eclipse Cross is being readied to launch in the Indian market. After the addition of features that have been mandatory according to the Indian regulations, it is expected that the Eclipse Cross will launch in the country in the year 2020. The Eclipse Cross will be the first product that will be released by the company as it already has BS-VI compliant engines, with a seat belt reminder system and a speed alert system and the belt reminder system some of the things that need to be added to the vehicle before its launch in the country. The Eclipse Cross is a modified version of the Outlander and it is bigger than the Hyundai Creta and the Jeep Compass size wise. The car is a five-seater and houses a 7.0 inch infotainment system that is enabled with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The Eclipse Cross will also have a panoramic sunroof and Rockford Fosgate music system, to name a few of the other features the car will have. When the Eclipse Cross launches in the country, it will be slotted under the Outlander and it could be priced to take on the Jeep Compass.

      25 October 2018

    • Audi Starts Production of e-tron With Estimated Launch in India By 2020

      Audi - a German car manufacturer that designs, produces, and markets luxury cars - is planning to host the world premiere of its first fully electric-powered SUV, the e-tron, in San Francisco on 17 September 2018. The car is already in production at the CO2-neutral production facility of the company at Brussel. The luxury car maker is looking to introduce the Audi e-tron to a few global markets at the beginning of 2019. To entice the customers, Audi has also created and released a teaser featuring the electric car. In this teaser, the slightly raised cover at the front left corner gives a glimpse of the sleek headlamps along with a bumper with a Catalunya Red paint finish. Only the camouflaged versions of the e-tron have been spotted so far.

      The all-electric SUV features a motor on each axle which is capable of generating a maximum power of around 408 PS along with 561 Nm of peak torque. Furthermore, the Audi e-tron can achieve an acceleration of 0-100 kmph in just a matter of less than 6 seconds, while offering an electronically limited top speed of 200 kmph. The company claims that the e-tron is capable of covering over 400 km (WLTP) on a single charge. In comparison, the closest rival of the car, the Tesla Model X P100D, offers a range of 475 km while offering a 0-100 kmph acceleration in 2.9 seconds. Other rivals of the e-tron include the Jaguar I-Pace and the Mercedes EQC.

      The most unique feature of the e-tron includes a “electro-hydraulically” integrated braking system which can increase the travel range of the car by 1 km for every km travelled downhill. This helps the car repurate its energy, making it capable of regaining over 70% of its torque and power production output. This means that the e-tron can regain around 220 kW of power and 300 Nm of torque using this state-of-the-art technology. According to the claims of the German automaker, this car offers the highest ever efficiency compared to all the electric cars in production across segments.

      24 October 2018

    • Mahindra to launch two new electric SUVs

      Electric cars in India are to get a huge boost as Mahindra is planning to launch two new electric SUVs in India. The automobile giant will be launching the eKUV100, the electric version of the KUV100. They will also come up with the electric version of the SsangYong Tivoli based S201 SUV with an electric powertrain.

      Reportedly, the first launch will be in 2019 and it will be the eKUV100. Following this launch, the sub-compact SUV codenamed as S201 will be launched. The cars are likely to lock horns with the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Honda WR-V, Ford EcoSport, and Tata Nexon. The launch has been confirmed by Mahindra and Mahindra by the end of the financial year 2020-21.

      15 October 2018

    • Dhruv Mohite Consolidates Championship Lead In Round 3 Of 2018 Volkswagen Ameo Cup

      The final race of the weekend saw Dhruv Mohite consolidate his lead in the 2018 Volkswagen Ameo Cup championship as the series completes its penultimate round in Chennai. Mohite won Race 3 with a comfortable lead of 7.2 seconds, as Saurav Bandyopadhyay finished a distant second. Taking his second podium of the day and of the season too, was Shubhomoy Ball as he finished third. With eight races complete, the championship moves into its final round that will be held at the Buddh International Circuit in October this year.

      11 October 2018

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