Bharat NCAP to be launched on August 22

The Bharat New Car Assessment Programme will test cars and SUVs with up to 8 seats weighing under 3.5 tonnes; it will not be limited to passive safety tests and testing ICE vehicles but also test and rate CNG and EVs based on their crash performance.

Autocar Pro News Desk By Autocar Pro News Desk calendar 21 Aug 2023 Views icon11689 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp

Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari is to launch the much-awaited Bharat New Car Assessment Programme (Bharat NCAP) on August 22, 2023. This programme is a significant step forward in the government’s commitment to improve road safety through raising the safety standards of motor vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes in India.

The Bharat NCAP programme aims to provide a tool to passenger vehicle buyers to make a comparative assessment of crash safety of motor vehicles available in the market. 

Under this programme, car manufacturers can voluntarily offer their cars tested as per Automotive Industry Standard (AIS) 197. Based on the performance of the vehicle in the tests, the model will be awarded star ratings for Adult Occupants (AOP) and Child Occupant (COP). Potential car customers can refer to these star ratings to compare the safety standards of different vehicles and accordingly make their purchase-decision.

It is expected that the demand for safer cars will increase, encouraging passenger vehicle manufacturers to comply with customer needs. Furthermore, with high safety standards, made-in-India cars and SUVs will be able to compete better in the global market, increasing the export potential of the car manufacturers in India. The Bharat NCAP programme is expected to help enhance awareness of a safety sensitive car market in India.

The Bharat NCAP program was first announced back in 2016 and the draft notification to introduce it was approved in June 2023. The program, which will test passenger vehicles with up to eight seats weighing under 3.5 tonnes, will be accorded star ratings based on their performance in crash tests factoring in the existing Indian regulations and driving conditions.

Additionally, Bharat NCAP will not be limited to passive safety tests and testing internal combustion-engined vehicles, but also test and rate CNG and electric vehicles based on their crash performance. Also, unlike other NCAP formats, which award separate star ratings for adult and child protection, BNCAP is likely to get a single unified rating for adult and child protection.

The development also assumes significance considering that India is looking to reduce the number of road accidents and deaths by 50 percent by end-2030. India has one of the world’s worst accident records and data from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) suggests that over 120,000 people died due to road-related accidents in CY2020. 

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