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 Bharat NCAP to boost safety standards

Bharat NCAP to boost safety standards


In a significant move towards ensuring safer vehicles on Indian roads, the Bharat New Car Assessment Programme (NCAP) crash test norms are scheduled to be implemented from October 1, 2023. These norms will align with global benchmark testing protocols and provide consumers with reliable safety ratings for vehicles. The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) has finalised the draft notification, and a consultative period will invite feedback from Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and stakeholders to further refine the implementation process.


Enhancing Vehicle Safety in India

With an increasing emphasis on safety norms, the Bharat NCAP ratings hold significant importance. This development follows the achievement of homegrown brands like Tata and Mahindra, which have received 5-star ratings on the Global NCAP scale. Recent surveys conducted by automobile manufacturers, including Skoda Auto India, have shown that customers are demanding safety ratings for all vehicles in India.

The Parameters of Bharat NCAP

Government has established comprehensive parameters to determine the safety ratings under Bharat NCAP. These include assessing pedestrian-friendly design, structural safety, active and passive safety assist technologies, and occupant safety for adults and children. The alignment of the testing protocols with global crash-test standards ensures a reliable and consistent assessment. This alignment also includes the high-speed crash tests that are conducted by GNCAP.


Voluntary Compliance and OEM Involvement

Initially, the Bharat NCAP ratings will be voluntary. However, OEMs will be encouraged to submit their vehicles for testing or allow testing agencies to select vehicles from showrooms. This approach will enable consumers to make informed choices and encourage OEMs to prioritize safety measures.

Coverage and Benefits

Bharat NCAP will cover vehicles with type approval for carrying up to eight passengers, including the driver, with a gross vehicle weight of less than 3.5 tonnes, manufactured or imported in India. The new policy will be advantageous for local automakers as they will no longer need to send their vehicles abroad for testing and rating, reducing costs and promoting local manufacturing.

Inclusive Testing Approach

Bharat NCAP will not be limited to passive safety tests and internal combustion vehicles. It will also encompass CNG and electric vehicles, ensuring that all types of vehicles are evaluated for their crash performance. The inclusion of CNG and electric vehicles in the rating system is a notable feature that addresses a local concern and demonstrates India's commitment to sustainable transportation.


Overall, The Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI), the testing agency for Bharat NCAP, is fully prepared to conduct international-level tests in line with the Indian context. ARAI's state-of-the-art laboratories in Pune and Chakan have already conducted over 800 pre-NCAP crash tests. Their expertise will ensure accurate and reliable evaluations of vehicle safety.