In a significant move to enhance road safety, Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari, has launched the New Car Assessment Program (Bharat NCAP) on August 22. The initiative aims to elevate safety standards for motor vehicles weighing up to 3.5 tonnes in India. Car manufacturers can voluntarily subject their vehicles to tests following the Automotive Industry Standard (AIS) 197.
The program assigns star ratings for Adult Occupants (AOP) and Child Occupants (COP) based on crash test performance, allowing customers to compare safety levels of different vehicles. The introduction of Bharat NCAP is anticipated to increase demand for safer cars, promoting manufacturers to align with consumer preferences. This initiative could enhance India’s global car market competitiveness and export potential.
With official data revealing high accident rates, this endeavor is a significant step to mitigate road accidents’ impact. Leading automotive companies like Mahindra & Mahindra, Maruti Suzuki, and Toyota have lauded the initiative, expecting it to foster a culture of safety and healthy industry competition.