Published on July 11th, 2015 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Car Buyers In India Want Airbags
For many years, carmakers have been in two minds to make airbags standard on models in India, worried that higher costs will hurt sales. However eight months after Toyota began installing the devices in all its models sold locally, sales rose 19% in the period, compared with a 5% jump in industry-wide deliveries.
“It’s been better than we expected,” said N. Raja, senior vice president and director for sales and marketing at Toyota’s India unit. “Even in smaller cities and towns, people are coming to realize the need for safety features.”
With only 1% of the world’s motor vehicles, India accounts for 15% of all traffic deaths. Despite such grim statistics, the government has yet to mandate airbags or vehicle crash tests. As vehicle ownership grows, consumers are demanding more safety features. Last year, more than 80% of customers in India said they wanted anti-locking brakes (ABS) and 76% wanted airbags.
The government is moving to catch up. Improving safety standards on India’s highways could boost economic output by 4%, according to a road ministry presentation on a proposed new transportation safety bill. Malaysia car buyers, you need to look towards safety features even more when buying your next car.