Independent crash tests were preformed on a number of small, inexpensive cars, including the Tata Nano. This vehicle, billed as the “best mileage small car in India,” may also be among the most dangerous.
Several models of car were tested in front-end crashes, including the Tata Nano. Also tested were the Suzuki-Maruti Alto 800, Ford Figo, Hyundai i10, and Volkswagen Polo. Each model of economy car was subjected to independent crash tests by Global NCAP, a non-profit organization based in England. The Alto 800 is the best selling car in India.
Test crashes took place at 40 miles per hour. The Tat Nano received zero stars from judges. This signified a significant risk of deadly impacts for people riding in the car. In test crashes, the body of the car collapsed. Similar results were recorded for the Hyundai and Suzuki models. Volkswagen and Ford did slightly better in the tests.
“India is now a major global market and production center for small cars, so it’s worrying to see levels of safety that are 20 years behind the five-star standards now common in Europe and North America. Poor structural integrity and the absence of air bags are putting the lives of Indian consumers at risk,” Max Mosley, chairman of Global NCAP, in a statement.
As far as automobile safety is concerned, bigger is better.