The world’s cheapest car hasn’t ended. The Nano should be presented this year, but the mission began back in 2003, when Ratan Tata, chairman of Tata Motors and the $50 billion Tata corporation, set a challenge to build a “people’s car.” Tata gave an engineering team, led by 32-year-old star engineer Girish Wagh, three chucks for the new vehicle: It should be low-cost, adhere to regulatory requirements, and achieve performance targets such as fuel efficiency and acceleration capacity. The design team initially came up with a vehicle which had bars instead of doors and plastic flaps to keep out the monsoon rains.
It’s called the Nano, for its high technology, small size and for its cheap price. Tata Nano automobile is cute and squash. It’s a complete four-door car. Tata nano gas engine is a 623-cc engine, gets 50 miles to the gallon, and the seats up to five. It’s 8% smaller in outer length than its closest rival, Suzuki’s Maruti 800, but has 21% more volume inside. It is the most inexpensive car in the world. Starting this fall, the Nano will roll off the assembly lines at a Tata Motors plant in Singur, Bengal, and navigate India’s potholed roads.
Tata nano cars, also known as the People’s Car, is Ratan Tata’s dream come true, and is India’s contribution to changing the global auto industry. The car has put India on the global map. Tata has done in four years what the Japanese took 30 years to do. It will change the whole industry.” Even rivals are gushing. “It’s a red letter day for Indian industry, a day India should be proud of,” says Venu Srinivasan, chairman of motorcycle maker TVS Motors. “Ratan Tata has the vision to create a new business model and all the naysayer are looking at it with concern. The Nano is a path breaker.”
According to a public survey, Indian auto industry will stand in a special position by the year 2014. It will come forward as the fourth-largest light vehicle market in the world, riding on low-cost cars. India will be seen ahead of countries like Germany, Russia and Brazil in the years to come.
With Tata Nano and low-cost cars from Renault/Nissan and Hyundai hitting the Indian roads, the MINI CAR segment would lead. By 2014, the light vehicle sales are expected to reach a mark of 4.5 millions units.
According to analyst, “The demand for the low-cost car will be a great hit for the two-wheeler sales and also the people’s car Tata Nano would challenge Maruti Suzuki for market leadership.”
In the year 2007, the sales figure of light vehicle in India stood at 1.7 million units whereas America topped the list with 16 millions units. China was at seven millions, Japan – five millions, Germany – 3.4 millions and Italy at 2.7 millions units. With the growing demand for light vehicles, India will be able to reach the fourth position by 2014.