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World's Most Cheapest Car (TATA NANO)
Nov 21, 2008 | Views: 2,519
Manufacturer Tata Motors
Production 2008 — present
Class City car
Body style(s) 4-door sedan
Layout RR layout
Engine(s) 2 cylinder SOHC petrol | Bosch multi- point fuel | injection(single injector)all aluminium | 623 cc (38 cu in)
Transmission(s) 4speed synchromesh withoverdrive in 4th
Wheelbase 2,230 mm (87.8 in)
Length 3100 mm (122 in)
Width 1500 mm (59.1 in)
Height 1600 mm (63 in)
Kerb weight 580 kg (1,300 lb)-600 kg (1,300 lb)
Fuel capacity 15 L (4 US gal/3 imp gal)
Designer Girish Wagh, Justin Norek of Trilix, | Pierre Castinel
According to Tata Group's Chairman Ratan Tata, the Nano is a 33 PS (33 hp/24 kW) car with a 623 cc rear engine and rear wheel drive, and has a fuel economy of 4.55 L/100 km (21.97 km/L, 51.7 mpg (US), 62 mpg (UK)) under city road conditions, and 3.85 L/100 km on highways (25.97 km/L, 61.1 mpg (US), 73.3 mpg (UK)). It is the first time a two-cylinder non-opposed petrol engine will be used in a car with a single balancer shaft. Tata Motors has reportedly filed 34 patents related to the innovations in the design of Nano, with powertrain accounting for over half of them. The project head, Girish Wagh has been credited with being one of the brains behind Nano's design.
Much has been made of Tata's patents pending for the Nano. Yet during a news conference at the New Delhi Auto Expo, Ratan Tata pointed out none of these is revolutionary or represents earth-shaking technology. He said most relate to rather mundane items such as the two-cylinder engine’s balancer shaft, and how the gears were cut in the transmission.
Though the car has been appreciated by many sources, including Reuters due to "the way it has tweaked existing technologies to target an as-yet untapped segment of the market", yet it has been stated by the same sources that Nano is not quite "revolutionary in its technology", just low in price. Moreover, technologies which are expected of the new and yet-to-be-released car include a revolutionary compressed-air fuel system and an eco-friendly electric-version, technologies on which Tata is reportedly already working, though no official incorporation-date for these technologies in the new car has been released.
According to Tata, the Nano complies with Bharat Stage-III and Euro-IV emission standards. Ratan Tata also said, 'The car has passed the full-frontal crash and the side impact crash'. Tata Nano passed the required 'homologation’ tests with Pune-based Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI).This means that the car has met all the specified criteria for roadworthiness laid out by the government including emissions or noise & vibration and can now ply on Indian roads. Tata Nano managed to score around 24 km per litre during its ‘homologation’ tests with ARAI. This makes Tata Nano the most fuel efficient car in India. Nano will be the first car in India to display the actual fuel mileage figures it recorded at ARAI’s tests on its windshield. According to ARAI it conforms to Euro IV emission standards which will come into effect in India in 2010.
Rear mounted engine
The use of a rear mounted engine to help maximize interior space makes the Nano similar to the original Fiat 500, another technically innovative "people's car". A concept vehicle similar in styling to the Nano, also with rear engined layout was proposed by the UK Rover Group in the 1990s to succeed the original Mini but was not put into production. The eventual new Mini was much larger and technically conservative. The independent, and now-defunct, MG Rover Group later based their Rover CityRover on the Tata Indica.
The introduction of the Nano received media attention due to it's targeted low price. The car is expected to boost the Indian Economy, create entrepreneurial-opportunities across India, as well as expand the Indian car market by 65%. The car was envisioned by, Ratan Tata, Chairman of the Tata Group and Tata Motors, who has described it as an eco-friendly "people's car". Nano has been greatly appreciated by many sources and the media for its low-cost and eco-friendly initiatives which include using compressed-air as fuel and an electric-version (E-Nano). Tata Group is expected to mass-manufacture the Nano in large quantities, particularly the electric-version, and, besides selling them in India, to also export them world-wide.
Critics of the car have questioned its safety in India (where reportedly 90,000 people are killed in road-accidents every year), and have also criticised the pollution that it would cause(including criticism by Nobel Peace Prize-winning scientist, Rajendra Pachauri). However, Tata Motors has promised that it would definitely release Nano's eco-friendly variants alongside the gasoline-variant.
Due to opposition to Tata's Singur car-factory by Mamta Banerjee, Tata Motors decided to cease operations in Singur on 2 October 2008 and started manufacturing Tata Nano at its Pantnagar plant. On her protests and the consequent pullout, the media heavily critcised her and The Telegraph even said "India is being raped by those who profess to be her soldiers, the guardians of peace." Financial Times reported: "If ever there were a symbol of India’s ambitions to become a modern nation, it would surely be the Nano, the tiny car with the even tinier price-tag. A triumph of homegrown engineering, the $2,200 (€1,490, £1,186) Nano encapsulates the dream of millions of Indians groping for a shot at urban prosperity. That process has stalled...No big economy has prospered without undergoing a huge, often brutal, shift of labour from the countryside to cities and from farms to factories...There is a yawning gap with China. India’s information technology and service sector, no matter how dynamic, simply cannot absorb enough labour. To truly shine, India will need millions, perhaps tens of millions, more manufacturing jobs. Why has it not created them?"
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