Bharat NCAP to formally launch today: How it will rate cars in India

Bharat NCAP will be India's first-ever dedicated car crash safety program, making India the fifth country in the world to have such safety protocol af
Bharat NCAP will be India's first-ever dedicated car crash safety program.
Bharat NCAP will be India's first-ever dedicated car crash safety program.

The Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari will launch the much-awaited Bharat New Car Assessment Programme (Bharat NCAP) on August 22, 2023. With this program, the Indian government aims to make cars safer in the country, which would eventually help in minimising road accident-related deaths and injuries. This is going to be the first-ever dedicated car crash safety program in India.

With the Bharat NCAP, India will be the world’s fifth country after the US, China, Japan and South Korea to have a dedicated car crash safety program. The launch of the Bharat NCAP is expected to mark a step forward to improve road safety by raising the safety standards of motor vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes in the country, claimed the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH).

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Here are key things to know about the Bharat NCAP, how it will test and rate the cars, which are the models that will be under the ambit of this crash safety program.

Bharat NCAP: Which cars will be under the program

The new car crash safety program will be applicable to vehicles with type approval for up to eight passengers, including the driver. Vehicles will a gross weight lower than 3.5 tonnes or 3,500 kg, which are manufactured or imported in India will have to undergo the Bharat NCAP crash tests. The safety assessment will be applicable to all the vehicles that are commonly used and available in the Indian market. In that case, all the passenger vehicles across different segments like hatchbacks, sedans, SUVs and MPVs will be under the ambit of the new crash test program.

Bharat NCAP: How cars will be selected for testing

Bharat NCAP allows auto manufacturers to submit their car models voluntarily for crash testing and safety evaluation. Once the crash test is done, the authorities will communicate the results to the respective OEMs and the results can be made public. The manufacturers will have the option to request a reassessment if they feel it necessary.

Additionally, the Bharat NCAP has the authority to independently acquire car models from showrooms randomly for crash testing and evaluating the safety levels. This would further enhance the transparency and credibility of the program. Besides the conventional internal combustion engine-powered vehicles fuelled by petrol and diesel, the crash safety program will also have testing facilities for CNG and electric vehicles. The testing and evaluation of electric vehicles are expected to be similar to the Green NCAP for EVs in Europe.

Bharat NCAP: How cars will be crash tested

The crash testing of the vehicles under the Bharat NCAP will encompass three main types of tests. These will be the Offset Deformable Barrier Frontal Impact Test, Side Impact Test and Pole Side Impact Test. These tests will thoroughly assess the specific vehicle’s ability to protect the occupants inside during various collision scenarios. Just like the Global NCAP and other crash testing programs around the world, expect Bharat NCAP to crash test the cars in India with dummies fitted with sensors to check the impact level in crash situations at certain speeds, replicating real-life crash scenarios.

Once the testing is done, the result of the impact on the dummy occupants will be assessed based on the data received from the sensors. The safety rating of the cars tested under the Bharat NCAP will be divided into two categories: Adult Occupant Protection (AOP) and Child Occupant Protection (COP). The rating for the cars will range between zero and five. To achieve a five-star rating for Adult Occupant Protection, a car must score a minimum of 27 points during the crash test. Similarly, scoring at least 41 points can ensure a car gets a five-star rating in the Child Occupant Protection category.

First Published Date: 21 Aug 2023, 11:34 AM IST

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