A Mahindra XUV500 was involved in a fatal crash a few days back that left the owner's son with traumatic head injuries. What made the crash worse is the fact that none of the six airbags deployed upon impact. The images of the crashed SUV were shared TeamBHP forum by a user seeking answers as to why it happened. TeamBHP user arvindb4 wrote that his Mahindra XUV500 W8 2013 model was involved in an accident. He added that his son was driving with the seatbelt on but none of the six airbags deployed and he suffered severe brain injuries thus leaving the right side of his body, speech, hearing damaged. Now, Mahindra President (Farma and Automotive) Rajan Wadhera has shared detailed letter explaining airbag deployment.
Mahindra President Wadhera acknowledged that the company is aware of the crash that occurred in May 2018 in Gurugram and assured that Mahindra is in constant touch with the affected family. He went on to address the questions that have been raised relating to the accident and the fact that some social media posts concluded that since the XUV500's airbags didn't deploy, it is an unsafe vehicle.
He assured that Mahindra will conduct a thorough investigation once the vehicle is made available to them. Wadhera followed by listing and explaining the safety features on board the Mahindra XUV500:
-First launched in India in 2011, Mahindra XUV500 one of the first Indian designed vehicles that featured all variants with airbags. This was also the first Indian designed vehicle where all variants had ABS as a standard feature. High-end variants of XUV 500 even had ESP in 2011. Company records indicate that over 7,000 airbags have been consumed in our dealer workshops. Mahindra has testimonies from its customers of how the structural integrity of the vehicle and the airbags saved lives and reduced severity of injuries.
-Usually, airbag deployments happen when the sensors detect a signal upon sufficient impact. Calibrations are meticulously carried out in a way that the deployment of airbags happens only when it is warranted and so that, the deployments are avoided when it is not warranted. There are well-defined algorithms to decide the trigger of airbag deployments, based on the nature of impact and speeds. Sometimes what appears to be a severe enough accident may not have enough impact intensity for the airbags to deploy.
-In case of an accident leading to airbag deployment, the airbag ECU of the vehicle stores information related to that event. In case of an accident with no trigger for airbag deployment, there will not be any record of any data in ECU memory since the impact is not severe enough.
-Safety systems and the structural integrity of the XUV500 in India is the same as what is provided globally, and XUV is being sold in the EU and several other developed markets keeping up with their standards and norms.
Mahindra President ended the letter by stating that “it is extremely important to analyse and reconstruct this accident case. We have been in communication with the customer since the date of vehicle reporting at the dealership to obtain access to the vehicle and to conduct the investigation. The vehicle access should now be happening soon.”