The Nano is the brainchild of a dream, a dream seen by Ratan Tata to provide a cheap and affordable means of transportation for the common man. In a country where in less than 5% of the population own a car, the Nano was conceived as a small affordable car, which would be able to transport a small family in a comfortable and safe environment. Considered to be a replacement for a two wheeler, the Tata Nano, is greener than the two wheeler (in terms of emissions) and is a practical solution for mass transportation. We drive the ‘World’s Cheapest Car’ and check out whether it deserves the fame around it.
Surely things has changed in this new Nano but it won’t be too hard to recognize the car instantly. Towards the front the new GenX Nano gets a smoked headlamp cluster which actually looks far better than the bald headlamps that were found in the earlier Nano hatch. The front bumper of the new car also has been restyled completely and it gets a new air dam which actually gives this small car a smiling face but more importantly the new air dams also helps to keep the engine cool which is placed towards the rear of the car. While you also notice round foglamps towards the lower front bumpers just on the front hood you will also notice a a piano-black hood garnish which adds a premium feel to the front. Get Ex Showroom Price of Tata Nano in Chennai
There are not any noticeable changes made to the side profile of the hatch but you do get new wheel covers which add sporty appeal to the side profile. Walk towards the rear and you will be greeted with a surprise you will notice external release towards the rear boot area of the hat6ch which means that this new Nano now has a ususbale boot which can be opened only from outside though (No! You wont get any internal release switch or button), GenX Nano offers 94 Litres of claimed boot space inside which is good enough for a small suitcase or two or three laptop backpacks (depending on their size). The rear windshield also been redesigned because it now has an boot lid which could be opened.
No conspicuous change has been made to the interiors of Tata Nano GenX, except for sportier upholstery. The XE, XM and XMA variants get black and silver ‘Matrixed Nano’ with denim bolster fabrics upholstery and matrixed Nano fabrics with ebony door trims. XT and XTA feature brown ‘Infinium’ fabrics with embroidered ‘Nano’ letters and infinium fabrics encased in Latte door trims. Standard provisions provided in the cabin include dual gove boxes, three spoke Tata signature steering wheel, colour accented speaker bezel, driver information display, distance to empty, fuel gauge, LED display digital clock, low fuel warning indicator, cabin lamp, front seat head rest, driver side sunvisor, driver seat with slider, passenger side seat with slider, front and rear assist grips and rear seat folding.
Passenger side sunvisor without vanity mirrors is also available on the base and mid level trims. Dual average fuel economy and dual economic trip meter are available exclusively in the AMT variants. The rest of the trims get single average fuel economy and electronic trip meter. Electric power assisted steering is absent in the base variant, but it is fitted in rest of the line-up. Gear shift indicator and instantaneous fuel consumption features are again provided on the AMT trims only. Base XE gets blower only while the remaining four trims feature air conditioner. Provisions for 12V power socket for mobile charge is given in the XE, XM and XMA variants. The XT and XTA variants come with the 12V power socket. Cup holders are affixed in the manual variants only missing out on the AMT trims. Features exquisitely present in the range topping XT and XTA variant include remote keyless entry, heater, front power windows, passenger side sunvisor with vanity mirrors and magazine and coin holders on all doors. For occupants’ entertainment Tata Motors has inset a number of features in the XT and XTA trims such as an AmphiStream music system with radio, CD, MP3, AUX-In, Bluetooth for phone calls and music streaming and four speakers four surround sound. Tata Nano GenX Vs Maruti Alto 800-compared to the one of the leading cars in the budget segment, Nano lacks various features on the inside. On every parameter, except for the price Nano lags behind. However the presence of AMT tranny in Nano GenX brings it up among competition, this indeed is the lowest priced automatic car in Indian market.
Nano GenX uses the same 624cc twin-cylinder multi point fuel injected engine that produces 37 bhp @ 5500 rpm and 51 Nm of torque. It now comes with Electric Power Assisted Steering as standard, across all variants. Driving the Nano GenX felt special and that is due to a number reasons. What felt the most special was the Easy Shift i.e. the AMT and it truly makes life very easy. While it is smooth overall, there is quite a pronounced lag between gearshifts. The AMT has a Manual mode to offer an option of changing gears as per the driver’s requirement and also has a Sports mode, for some spirited driving maneuvers.This transmission also comes with a creep function that helps the car to crawl as soon as pressure from the brake pedal is released, without pressing the throttle. This is very useful during parking and functions both in forward and reverse. Get deals on Tata Nano
RIDE AND HANDLING ;
What impressed me a lot was the ride quality, which is very good for an entry level car and goes on to show the serious work that Tata engineers have been doing for the Nano. The ride, especially at low speeds has improved remarkably. In fact, overall, the suspension behavior was inspiring. The car uses anti roll bar for high speed stability and has an impressive ground clearance of 180mm, which means that uneven roads and illegal speed breakers pose no problem for the Nano GenX. The seats are pretty comfortable too. The turning radius of 4 metres is something that will always put a smile on one’s face. It is just so easy to drive it around crowded streets, tight parking spots and taking u-turns.
Another impressive feature of this car is the airconditioning. Though we were driving the car in the afternoon heat with the temperature soaring beyond 38 degrees Celsius, the cooling was just fine. The blower though, seemed a bit noisier than normal even at the first position. Other features in the Nano GenX include front power windows and remote central locking with alarm.
While safety has always been a point of concern for the Nano, Tata now claims that they have enhanced the torsional stiffness by using stronger materials and strengthened members. The C-Pillar of the latest is also beefed up for the opening tailgate. Increased length has helped the Nano to gain some more crumple zone and enhanced frontal protection. In addition, the doors get side impact beams, and there is an anti-roll bar as well. Having said all this, Nano still lacks Airbag and ABS in the range-topping trim.
The Tata Nano is a practical affordable entry level car which is big on space and mileage. It opens up a new segment altogether with many manufacturers gunning to compete neck to neck with it. Its stylish looks also qualify it to be kept as an additional car in the house. As far as the fires are concerned, even a Lamborgini has caught fire and hence one should not be biased with the Nano. One must also keep in mind that the Tata Nano was introduced as a option to two wheelers and is no supercar. Comparing a Nano to full blown hatchbacks is folly. A new CNG and Diesel option is just around the corner and Tata is also planning to roll out a luxury version of the Nano which will be high on features. Hats off to you Mr. Tata, the “People’s Car” is truly worth every penny.