India has finally become the 5th country in the world to introduce a car crash safety program. Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari has introduced the Bharat New Car Assessment Program (Bharat NCAP). The new Bharat NCAP now joins the league of ASEAN NCAP, Latin NCAP, Euro NCAP and ANCAP. To come into effect from October 1, 2023, the new Bharat NCAP will play an important role in improving road safety in the country.
India is among some of the leading nations in terms of road accidents and related human casualties. The new Bharat NCAP program will help customers to make the right buying choice and will also ask automakers to develop safer cars. All the locally manufactured cars as well as imported cars with a gross weight of up to 3.5 tonnes will have to comply with new Bharat NCAP norms. Not just ICE vehicles, BNCAP will also test CNG and electric vehicles.
Speaking on the launch, Nitin Gadkari said that over 30 car models have already been offered by automakers in India for assessment under the Bharat NCAP safety ratings. Automakers can voluntarily offer their cars for crash testing as per Automotive Standards 197. Automakers shall nominate a vehicle model to get tested under Bharat NCAP by submitting an application in Form 70-A to the designated agency of the central government.
The Bharat NCAP officials will visit the manufacturing plant or dealer outlet to opt for the base variant of the model through random sampling. Vehicles will be crash tested at the testing centre in presence of representatives from both OEMs and Bharat NCAP. Only base variant of any model will be crash tested by BNCAP.
Similar to the Global NCAP, the Bharat NCAP will give a star based rating from one to five by examining vehicle safety in three categories – Adult Occupant Protection (AOP), Child Occupant Protection (COP) and Safety Assist Technologies (SAT). After the apprival from BNCAP standing committe, the crash test results will be compiled and shared with OEMs. A certificate will also be issued by the Central Institute of Road Transport (CIRT). The vehicle’s crash test rating will be posted on a portal designated by the agency.
– Vehicles under the M1 category with seating of eight occupants plus the driver will be eligible for the crash testing under Bharat NCAP. Vehicles with up to 3,500 kg weight will be eligible for these tests.
– The tests will be carried out on the base-spec models of the vehicles with total sales of 30,000 units in the previous calendar year. If the vehicle is newly updated, OEM can ask for retest as well.
– Cars will be crash tested in 3 areas – Adult Occupant Protection (AOP), Child Occupant Protection (COP) and Safety Assist Technologies (AST)
– Bharat NCAP will conduct an offset deformable barrier frontal impact test, side impact test and pole side impact test for AOP & COP.
– For the frontal impact test, the vehicle will be remotely driven at a speed of 64kmph & a 40% overlap onto a deformable barrier.
– For the side impact test, a 950kg trolley will hit the driver’s side of the test vehicle at 50kmph.
– Vehicles with 3/4/5 stars crash test ratings will be eligible for the Pole side impact test. Under the pole side impact test, a vehicle will collide into a rigit pole at 29kmph to find the level of protection of the sidewards body & head protection.