• Gaurav Chakraborty

It's report card time for Hyundai, KIA, Suzuki

With the increase in the number of cars on roads, road accidents too have been increasing drastically over the years. Improving technology and improving features has not just led to the refinement factor of vehicles but also the performance of vehicles. Due to which the need for safer cars too increases day by day. Currently, for India, it is Global NCAP who has taken the initiative for promoting safer cars under #SaferCarsForIndia initiative.


Global NCAP under its initiative of #SaferCarsForIndia crash-tested three products from the Hyundai, KIA and Suzuki stable. The findings are pretty disappointing. It comes as a shock to us that even in 2020 companies sell such horrible performing products.


The cars which were considered for test were as follow:


  • KIA Seltos

  • Hyundai Grand i10 Nios

  • Suzuki S-Presso

Let's check the report card of these "one of the best-sellers".


Suzuki S-Presso


If designing a car that fail the crash test was an art, Maruti Suzuki India will be the Picasso of it. Maruti has done it again. The S-Presso, based on the "advanced" HEARTECH platform from Suzuki, scored a perfect 0.0. Take a bow Suzuki for performing worse than RediGo.


As per the reports from Global-NCAP, the S-Presso offered good protection to the heads of both the dummies. However, the driver’s neck showed adequate protection and the passenger’s neck showed poor protection explains the zero stars. The driver’s chest showed poor protection and the passenger’s chest showed weak protection. The driver’s knees showed marginal protection due to the dangerous structures behind the dashboard. But, the passenger’s knees showed good protection.


On a whole, the S-Presso scored a perfect zero of five stars rating at 0 points of 17 points for the Adult Occupant Protection.


Moving into the Child Occupancy, you maybe fine if you are a child in a bucket seat. The S-Presso did fine with a two-star rating and a score of 13.84 of the 49 allowable points. With an overall rating of 13.84 of 66. Bodyshell integrity was termed to be unstable. Maruti Suzuki should change the title from “way of life” to “way of death”.






Hyundai Grand i10 Nios


The Grand i10 Nios is the next car to be tested. While the car is well loaded with features that will draw many, but as per the Global NCAP, it loses out on protection. Nevertheless, we had an understanding of how the Gi10 will do post-Hyundai Santro outcomes. Like the Santro, the K1 platform also underpins the Nios. The findings are similar to those of Santro, too.


The Nios scored two stars safety rating for the Adult Occupants Protection (7.05/17). The protection offered to the driver and passenger head and neck was good. However, the driver chest showed weak protection while the passenger’s chest showed adequate protection. The driver and passenger’s knees showed marginal protection as they could impact with dangerous structures behind the dashboard supported by the Tranfascia tube.


The region of the footwell was graded as unstable. The automobile provides the driver and rider with a regular SBR. The two stars for the safety of adult inhabitants illustrate all of the above. The Bodyshell, in addition to this, was also graded unsafe for further loading.


In the department of child safety, the vehicle faired in an acceptable way with 2 stars safety and scoring 15 points of the available 49 points. It must also be noted that Hyundai refused to recommend Child Restraint Systems (CRS) for the test which hampered Grand i10 NIOS from earning more stars. This leads to an overall rating of 22.05 of 66 with an unstable shell.


This leaves the Tata Tiago/ Tigor to be the undisputed king in the segment although it too has the reputation of an unstable body structure.





KIA Seltos


Now, for obvious reasons, this one was a complete shocker for everyone. In the 10+ lakh segment, the KIA Seltos has proved to be the worst. The Seltos surprised all with an unpredictable bodyshell until then Duster and Suzuki Ertiga were deemed unsafe to buy.


Scoring just 3 stars in AOP (Adult Occupant Protection) with 8.03 of the 17 allowable points and a 2 star rating for the COP (Child Occupant Protection) with 15 of 49 merits the Seltos raised questions about not just for itself but also it’s sibling the all-new Creta.


After the Chairman of Latin NCAP accused the Hyundai-KIA group of double standards. It appears to be true with the Indian market. Here is why we say this because the KIA Seltos secured a perfect 5-star NCAP when conducted by Australasian NCAP. The Seltos has failed to even bag-in safe and stable body integrity. All these make the KIA-Hyundai group face a lot of questions. Although the variant on test was the one with just two airbags, I doubt adding more number of airbags will make the reports any better considering the fact that the platform itself has been rated to be unstable.


The protection offered to the driver and passenger head was adequate, both passenger and driver head bottomed out the airbags. Both adult passenger’s neck protection was good. The driver’s chest showed marginal protection, while passenger chest protection was good. Driver and passenger knees showed marginal protection as they could impact with dangerous structures behind the dashboard supported by the Tranfascia tube. Driver tibias showed weak and adequate protection while passenger’s tibias showed good and adequate protection.




Global NCAP's findings on the three vehicles were not good and only goes to show how the manufacturers treat our market. It also makes us feel happy, though, that homegrown manufacturers like Tata Motors and Mahindra are manufacturing safer cars for us. Kuddos to Nexon, Xuv300, Altroz.



It is appreciated when a company provides a car loaded with features like a huge sunroof or high-quality music system or air purifiers, but it is not appreciated when the same comes at the cost of the safety of vehicle. Rather than providing touch-screen infotainment with connected car features to an entry-level vehicle makes no sense if one is compromising on the life of the customers.



The manufacturers should also realize that having double standards will just hamper the growth in a country like India. Yes, India is a price-sensitive market where mileage and resale value matters, yet it doesn’t explain why it has to come cost of human life. Providing a 5 star rated safe vehicle for the European market whereas a crash test fail car for the Indian or South Asian market just speaks of the hypocrisy of these automakers. Let’s all come together and pledge for #SaferCarsForIndia.


Complaining against Global-NCAP or other independent organizations for conducting crash test and refraining from sending the vehicles on tests which exposes the weakness just exposes the carelessness of a certain OEM towards it’s customers.



With the rising cases of road accidents, such poor performing cars will increase the death ratio too. Safety surely depends on driving but, you can’t have an assurance of the other person using the road. It takes just takes miscalculation of milliseconds for one to end up in a horrible crash.









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