The Go, the entry-level hatchback under Nissan Motor Company's Datsun brand, will soon see the introduction of a variant with an airbag on the driver's side. In addition to the feature, the car's shell has also been tweaked at certain points to strengthen the structure. The production of the new variant is set to start next month. Autocar Professional had first reported in its February 1, 2015 issue that the Go hatchback will get the airbag feature.
The move by Datsun to offer a variant with an airbag comes after the Go had failed to get a start rating in a crash test by Global New Car Assessment Programme (GNCAP). The agency had strongly criticised the vehicle's occupant safety level and its bodyshell integrity. Maruti Suzuki''s Swift (without airbag), which was also tested along with the Go, was also given a zero star rating by GNCAP. The Swift fitted with two airbags scored got a 3-star rating for adult occupant protection. With the airbag variant, the Go is likely to get a star rating in a crash test.
Nissan insists that the airbag fitment is not a reaction to the GNCAP test results. Before the Go, its MPV version – Go+ – was launched with a variant offering an airbag. The Datsun brand's global chief Vincent Cobee had told Autocar Professional soon after the Go+ launch, "You don’t develop anything within two months in the car industry."
Whatever the reason for the airbag fitment, the Go with the airbag variant could be the answer for prospective customers who stayed away from the car mainly due to occupant-safety related concerns and prop up the Go's overall sales volumes.