Sunday, February 10, 2008


The Auto Policy 2002 and the Automotive Mission Plan 2006-2016 state the government’s intention and outline the action required to make India an automotive hub.

A key element of this vision is the small car. While various policy measures are under discussion within the government, the automobile industry has proactively contributed to the realisation of this vision. Industry has committed and is currently in the process of investing over Rs 70,000 crore in India.

Of this nearly 65% of the investments in the passenger vehicles sector is stated to be directed towards producing small cars. There are four essential prerequisites for being called a small car hub. First the total production of small cars in India should rank amongst the top two in the world.

Second, small cars should have a high share of the domestic market. Third, exports of small cars should account for a significant share of the global market. Fourth, India should be home to the development and use of new technologies and manufacturing processes that would sustain this leadership over time.

There can be no question about meeting the first requirement. Although, the numbers of cars produced in India are small compared to the US, Japan, China and other European countries, India is the third largest producer of small cars after Japan and Brazil.

Small cars also account for over 71% of the domestic market. India would continue to be a predominantly small car market. Given the current projections for the Nano, India could easily become the second largest market for small cars in the world and in time perhaps become the preferred location, thus fulfilling the second condition. Last year 192,745 passenger cars were exported from India.

some techies about tata nano


Length: 3.1 m
Width: 1.5 m
Height: 1.6 m
To seat: 4
Engine: 643cc, 2-cylinder, all-aluminum
Power: 33 BHP
Position: Engine, battery at rear end
Boot: In front
Fuel: Petrol
Fuel injection: MPFI
Fuel consumption: 20 kmpl
AC: Only in deluxe version
Music system: No
Passenger side mirror: No
Power steering: No
ABS/airbags: No
Price: $2500 at dealer + VAT + transport cost. Base version approximate on-road price: $3000
Tyres: Tubeless tyres
Body: All-steel
Safety features: Crumple zones, intrusion-resistant doors, seat belts, 2 A-Pillars
Suspension: Independent front and rear

The car will have a two-cylinder 624-cc petrol engine with 33 bhp of power. It will also have a 30-litre fuel tank and four-speed manual gearshift. The car will come with air conditioning in the deluxe version, but will have no power steering.

But yes, it is a real car. Production is expected to be 250,000 units in the first year. Despite the puny 33 bhp engine, it has acceleration and speed comparable to the existing people's car of India, the approx US $ 5000 Maruti 800.

I know, that's pathetic power by American and Western standards. But Indian maximum legal speeds are way lower than them - and Tata Motors anyway claims that the car is as fast as the Maruti 800, India's original People's Car that changed things a couple decades back. And there are a million or more of them on the streets of India already.

The car will have front disk and rear drum brakes. The company claims mileage of 22 kmpl in city and 26 kmpl on highway.

The $ 2500 is the dealer price - the actual price on the road might be approx Rs $3000