Existing car owners need not worry, dates are applicable only for date of manufacture
The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has issued a notification which makes having dual air bags on front-seats mandatory in cars from April 1.
According to the notification, new models should have dual air bags from April 1 and existing models will have to comply by August 31, 2021.
In December last year, the government had sought public comment on a proposal to make airbags mandatory for the front passenger in all cars from next year, in a move that could raise costs for automakers slowly seeing a revival in demand.
The automotive industry has raised concerns on the tight timeline given by the ministry apart from the cost increase for implementation of the additional airbag, according to sources. Airbags for the driver’s side is mandatory in all cars since 1 July 2019.
According to industry experts, the addition of the dual airbags should cost around Rs 5,000-6000 putting an impact on the car price. Maruti and Hyundai could see their margin shrinking for a couple of months as the immediate effect.
“Companies will not raise the price of their existing models due to this compulsion, as usually the hike is being combined with an increase in raw material cost or new launch. The companies should have the capacity to take the cost under them,” auto expert Tutu Dhawan told Money9.
However, this would only be affected on cars which are under 5 Lakh price range as carmakers use to provide an airbag only for the driver n not for co-passenger in front to reduce the cost in these cars. High-range cars would not be affected by the new mandatory rule as they already have dual airbags in all their cars.