Goodbye 2022: Five key government interventions for auto industry
Government intervention is important in every sector and industry in order to maintain the quality and growth of the system. In the automotive industry, government intervention plays major role in maintaining safety of vehicle users, innovation and quality of the products and promotion of green environment, among other things. As the year 2022 comes to an end, we take a look back and reflect at the five key government interventions in the industry this year, especially in the real of safety, environment and innovation.
Here's a look at the five key government interventions in the auto industry this year:
1. Rear passenger seat belt alarms
Earlier this year, when the former chairman of Tata Sons, Cyrus Mistry, died in a car crash, it was highlighted that he was sitting in the rear seat of a luxury SUV and did not have his seat belt on. This was cited as the reason behind his fatal injury. This led to the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) issuing a draft rule to make it mandatory for carmakers to install an alarm system meant for the rear seat belts.
Union Minister Nitin Gadkari has time and again highlighted the concern of safety on Indian roads, and the rear seat belt alarms is a step in that direction. This system will act like a constant beeping sound which will alert the driver and passengers in case someone has not belted up while the car moves.
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2. Six airbags compulsion
In another step towards safety of passengers of four-wheelers, the government has made it compulsory for all the passenger vehicles in India to come equipped with at least six airbags from October, 2023. At present, majority of the passenger vehicles in the mass market segment, which comprises more than 80 per cent of total sales, don't get adequate airbags. Thus, the rule has been framed with the motive of the safety of all passengers travelling in motor vehicles, irrespective of their cost and variants.
3. Bharat NCAP vehicle safety testing
This year also saw India announce its own vehicle safety testing agency - Bharat NCAP. The aim of this platform is help customers choose safer cars based upon their star-ratings as well as promote a healthy competition among OEMs in the country to manufacture safer vehicles, Gadkari had said while making the announcement in June this year. The testing protocols for Bharat NCAP will be in line with global crash test protocols while factoring in the existing Indian regulations, and the process will begin from next year.
4. BS 6 Phase 2 emission norms
The emission norms are set to get upgraded from April 1 next year and the auto OEMs have already started working on accommodating this change in their products. The BS 6 Phase 2 emissions norms will be equivalent to Euro 6 emissions, unlike the current norms which are based on Euro 5. Vehicles will need to have an on-board self-diagnostic device to monitor the real time driving emission levels. The device will constantly monitor key parts for meeting emission standards in vehicles.
5. EV battery swapping draft policy
Electric vehicles are still at a nascent stage in India and government intervention is crucial to promote the technology by encouraging public to invest in battery-powered vehicles. While state governments have been coming up with better EV policies and awareness programs, the centre this year released a policy for electric vehicle battery swapping. This technology is being considered crucial for promotion of EVs in last-mile deliveries and two-wheelers as it allows for quick battery swapping and eliminating range anxiety.