On a Wheel and a Prayer: Get insurance now if you drive these cars in India

Last Updated: Jan 17, 2022 | 1,020 Views

India is set to become be the third largest car market by 2016, ahead of Japan, Germany, and Brazil according to IHS Automotive - a global automotive industry information provider. 

But are Indian cars as safe as their global counterparts? 

Well, the folks at New Car Assessment Programme (NCAP) – a global autonomous organization that crashes vehicles and rates them for safety- turned their focus on India to test the most popular cars here for safety. 

What they found out is enough to send alarm bells ringing. Alto 800, Tata Nano, Maruti Swift, Hyundai i10, and Datsun Go –failed NCAP’s tests and were declared to increase “the probability of life-threatening injuries,” in case of an accident. 

What seems appalling is the fact that Hyundai i10 produced for the European market passed the test with a five-star rating. The Indian version of i10 along with Tata Nano, Alto 800, Ford Figo and Volkswagen Polo were rated zero-star adult protection ratings. 

If you take into account condition of India roads, it becomes abundantly clear that you need more than a wheel and a prayer to survive your adult life on Indian roads 

So, if you’re driving a Tata Nano, Hyundai i10, Maruti Suzuki Swift, or Datsun Go on a road in Delhi- which has the dubious distinction of witnessing maximum road crash-related deaths among Indian cities- you might want to have a good motor insurance policy. It’s only hedging the risk that you take while driving. 

Car insurance not only saves great financial trauma in case of an accident, but also guarantees peace of mind with respect to liability, if an unfortunate third person were to be a victim in an accident involving your car. But there is often confusion regarding what motor insurance entails and careless assumptions lead to many problems for policy holders at the time of claim settlement.

Our in-house experts tell what insurance to get based on the risk-factors: 

Tata Nano & Maruti Alto 800

Tata Nano & Maruti Alto 800
 Recommended Insurance Cover
Tata Nano, Manufacture Year: 2016, Variant: LX
Annual Premium Range: Rs. 6,322 - 9,626

Alto 800, Manufacture Year: 2016, Variant: LXI
Annual Premium Range: Rs. 7,602 - 11,273

Plans Available
Bodyshell Integrity: Unstable
Vehicle structure: Proven Inadequate, collapsed to varying degrees (Crash Test)
Verdict: High Risk of life-threatening injuries
Global NCAP (Ratings): 0
UN Test: Failed

Hyundai i10**


Hyundai i10** Recommended Insurance Cover
Bodyshell Integrity: Unstable HYUNDAI i10 1.1, Year: 2016, Variant: D-LITE
Annual Premium Range: Rs. 9,599 - 12,642

 Plans Available
Vehicle structure: Proven Inadequate, collapsed to varying degrees (Crash Test)
Verdict: High Risk of life-threatening injuries
Global NCAP test: Failed
UN Test: Failed

Maruti Swift** 

Maruti Swift
Recommended Insurance Cover
Global NCAP: Fail (Lack of Airbags)  
Maruti Swift, Year: 2016, Variant: LXI
 Annual Premium Range: Rs. 10,073 - 16,272
Plan Available 
Bodyshell Integrity: Unstable 
CRASH  Test Dummies faced near-fatal injuries

Ford Figo


FORD Figo Recommended Insurance Cover
Bodyshell Integrity: Stable
FORD Figo, Year: 2016, Variant: 1.4 DURATORQ DIESEL EXI 
Annual Premium Range: Rs. 17,554 - 21,121

 Plans Available
 UN test: Pass
Global NCAP test: Fail

POLO (Upgraded with Air-bags)


POLO (Upgraded with Air-bags) Recommended Insurance Cover
Global NCAP: Passed (4-Star)
 Volkswagen Polo, Year: 2016, Variant: 1.2L TRENDLINE (DIESEL)
Annual Premium Range: Rs. 16,889 - 26,164

Plans Available
UN test: Passed
Initial Test: Failed but upgraded version clear the tests

**Models for European market passed the test  (Data Source: Global NCAP, Euro NCAP)

Manoj Aswani
Manoj is the co-founder and COO of MyInsuranceClub. He has experience in Financial Services, Internet, Insurance and Outsourcing business. He has done his Post Graduation from XLRI, Jamshedpur.