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The Tata Nano to become global smart city car


The Indian carmaker plans for the second-generation Tata Nano to shift upmarket and become a ‘smart city car’.

Karl Slym – Tata Motors managing director – has confirmed that the emphasis of the Nano will shift from the ‘world’s cheaper car’ to a vehicle that would be competitive and desirable outside of India as well.

He continued to say that they still want to make it affordable, but that they’re shifting their attentions towards making it a smart city car.

The first Nano – having been dubbed India’s ‘people car’ – was launched in 2009 for the very low price of 100,000 rupees, or $1750. The aim of the company was to offer locals a cheap four-wheeled alternative to the motorcycle. Since then the price has gone up because of the increasing costs of materials.

The Nano features a rear-mounted 28kW/51Nm 624cc two-cylinder petrol engine coupled to a four-speed manual transmission that sends power to the back wheels. The Nano has no power steering, no airbatgs, only one wing mirror and one windscreen wiper and a fixer rear hatch. Air conditioning and a radio are available, but only as high-grate extras.

According to Slym, the new model will feature new engine variations, an overhauled design and enhanced equipment levels.  The future Nano will come with a variety of engines such as CNG – compressed natural gas, diesel, as well as power steering.

This second-generation Nano is expected to launch at the middle of the decade and is also expected to take some queues from the Tata Pixel concept from 2011 as well as the updated Megapixel concept; both of these designs being considerably more modern and sophisticated than the current production model.

The Indian carmaker is looking at Daimler’s Smart Fortwo as an example of the next-gen Nano’s potential to work as a city car.

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