Panel headed by MoRTH pushes for connected car ratings

Date: October 11, 2023. — A government panel in India has proposed an innovative plan to link car ratings to enhanced connectivity. The goal of advancing automotive technology and promoting safer, more connected cars on Indian roadways. This initiative would assess various connectivity aspects, including navigation, entertainment, safety, and security features.

The panel, headed by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, has suggested that cars should be rated on a scale of one to five stars based on their level of connectivity. An independent agency would assess this rating. Display the rating on the car’s windshield along with the existing fuel efficiency and emission ratings.

In its 58-page draft, the government panel claimed that “most traffic problems result from non-line-of-sight scenarios. V2X fills the gap left by the poor performance of the majority of sensors in these situations. Moreover, the term “V2X” refers to the vehicle-to-everything (V2X) linked car technology. In line with changes taking place abroad, the panel suggests incorporating V2X into India’s Bharat New Car Assessment Programme (NCAP) for car safety ratings. However, the proposal did not specify a timetable for adoption.

The panel believes that improved connectivity would enhance the user experience, reduce road accidents. This enable better traffic management, and facilitate the adoption of electric vehicles. The panel also expects that the rating system would encourage car manufacturers to invest more in developing. The rating system upgraded their connectivity features.

The proposed connectivity features for the rating system encompass navigation, entertainment, safety, security, communication, and data. These features include a built-in or compatible navigation system for real-time traffic information and route guidance. They also offer a versatile multimedia system for audio and video content playback. Additionally, advanced driver assistance systems are provided for collision prevention, anti-theft, and remote monitoring capabilities. Moreover, the vehicle has wireless communication with other cars and devices, along with a data management system for performance enhancement and protection against unauthorized access or misuse.

The panel has suggested incentives and benefits for cars with higher connectivity ratings. These incentives include lower taxes, insurance premiums, toll charges, and parking fees. Furthermore, the panel has recommended some regulatory and policy measures to support the implementation of the rating system. These measures include creating a national database of connected cars, setting up a network of testing and certification centers. Additionally, they propose establishing data privacy and security standards.

The draft report, which is yet to be finalized and approved by the government, has been circulated among various stakeholders, including car makers, industry associations, and consumer groups, for their feedback. The panel aims to submit its final report by the end of this year. Moreover, if implemented, this initiative could set new standards for the Indian automotive industry, leading to safer and more technologically advanced cars on the nation’s roads.

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