With the onset of new auto safety norms in India, auto manufacturers are upgrading their model lineup in order to meet the new norms. India’s largest auto manufacturer, Maruti Suzuki too has been upgrading its model lineup and even discontinued a few models like the Omni and the Gypsy which were proving too expensive to upgrade. Now, the company has introduced several safety features in its Tour range of cars. The new safety features include ABS with EBD, Driver Airbag, Reverse Parking Sensor, Speed Alert System and Driver and Co-Driver Seat belt Reminder.
The Tour model series by Maruti are cars meant for commercial taxi use and are based on regular cars like the Dzire and Alto among others. The models which come with tour variants are the Dzire, Celerio, Alto 800 and Eeco. The Dzire is the most popular among these with cab operators and is known as the Tour S in its taxi guise model. The tour range of cars are based on the lower spec variants and are powered by the same engine options as on the regular cars, apart from CNG options.
Coming to the safety features added on these cars, this move has been made in order to make them compliant with the AIS-145 Safety Norms. AIS here stands for Automotive Industry Standards and the AIS-145 mandates that all cars sold from 1st of April should be equipped with several mandatory safety features. These features include ABS with EBD, Driver Airbag, Reverse Parking Sensor, Speed Alert System and Driver and Co-Driver Seat belt Reminder.
This has been done to lower accidents rate and moreover, bring down the fatality rates of these accidents. Apart from the AIS145, many vehicle structural reforms are also in a stage of being finalised under the BNSVAP which translates into the better build quality of all vehicles sold in India. Cars will have to pass several crash tests under this programme before being passed for sale in India.
Coming to the Maruti Suzuki Tour cars, the inclusion of all these safety measures has resulted in a surge in the ex-showroom prices of the vehicles. The Tour S model will be sold at an ex-showroom price in Delhi from Rs 5,60,480 to Rs 6,60,588, depending on the features and trims. The issue of safety is finally being taken seriously by authorities which is commendable to say the least. Two wheelers also have a new mandate on them according to which all two-wheelers sold after April 1, 2019, should come equipped with ABS for safety. The multiple safety feature addition in cars made under AIS 145 may increase their price by a little extent but makes them much safer than the previous models.