Will be sent to NCAP for a re-test.
According to a report on Autocar Professional, Nissan will start production of a top-end variant of the Datsun Go at its Oragadam plant next month. The variant in question will be equipped with a driver airbag, a feature which is presently unavailable on the hatchback.
The news comes on the back of a report which stated that an airbag-equipped Datsun Go will be available in the South African market from July. The Go for South Africa is exported from India.
While the Go+ was launched in India in January this year with a driver airbag as an optional feature, the same was unavailable on Datsun's first product. The Go hatchback was in the news last year for its zero-star safety rating by the Global NCAP testing agency. Global NCAP said in a statement that even providing an airbag would be of little use in the Go as the car's structure was weak.
Another report on the Economic Times says that engineers are addressing this issue as well with stronger steel on the monocoque and side impact beams. The report quotes sources as saying that the metal used for making the car now has a tensile strength of 520 MPa (mega Pascal) as compared to the previous 320 MPa. The addition of side beams is done to further improve the car's safety in the side impact test. Along with it, ABS would also be fitted to the car.
The re-engineered Go will soon be sent to the Global NCAP for a re-test, sources told the publication. Nissan on its part, neither confirmed nor denied the report.
However, David Ward, secretary general of Global NCAP said that his organization has had a "high-level of discussion" with top management of the Japanese car company, and that engineers are indeed working on safety improvements.