The Tata Nano has been a paradox of its own.
While it did make a name for itself in the history books as a ‘₹1 Lakh Car‘, it failed to enthuse the car buyers.
The Tata Nano was successful in turning heads all around the world with headlines like ‘World’s Cheapest Car’ in most of the dailies around the world. But, the Indian buyers had something else in their mind.
The fanfare around the Tata Nano started to die a slow death and so did the sales. But it left behind a legacy. No matter what numbers did the Nano achieved on the sales-o-meter, it did have an impact. On the emotional front, it gave aspirations to a lot of first time car owners and carried forward a dream on its wheels.
With such emotional connect, come a set of myths, conceptions and stereotypes. So, what are some of the things that Tata Nano owners are tired of hearing as of now.
The first and foremost thing that a Tata Nano owner is tired of hearing is the reason behind why they went for the car.
While the question seems reasonable, it does have an answer for many. As mentioned above, the Tata Nano was an aspirational car for many. The feeling of the ‘first car’ was satiated by this very vehicle.
“Where’s the engine?”
Yes, the Tata Nano doesn’t have an engine in the front.
Not that it doesn’t have one, but it has an engine at the back of the vehicle. So, one of the few things that the owners of this vehicle have surely heard about is this very fact.
“Why not an Alto?”
Back when Nano hit the showrooms, Maruti Suzuki’s Alto ruled the markets as India’s family car. So naturally, when someone bought a Tata Nano, the first question that came to anyone’s mind was why didn’t one go for the Maruti Alto.
Adding another lakh would’ve seemed a lot at the time, but seeing the results today, it surely would’ve been a smart call. However, at the price of a base model Alto 800, one used to get a Tata Nano. Tough call, isn’t it?
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“Lakhtakiya” (Costing ₹1 Lakh)
The term was coined by probably some smart person and entered the vernacular soon enough. The Nano had a nickname and it wasn’t something an owner would be proud of.
Nano soon gained the nickname down the years, however, it wasn’t something true exactly. While the ex-showroom price of the base model Tata Nano was ₹1 lakh, it wasn’t exactly the choice of many.
“How Many Can Sit Inside?”
Contrary to the popular belief, the Tata Nano has actually liberated a lot of space inside the vehicle. According to many user reviews, the car is often praised for its generous (relatively speaking) legroom at the back.
Moreover, the egg-shaped styling at the back ensures generous headroom at the back.
However, due to the shape of the vehicle, the seating in the front is a tad bit narrower.
The Tata Nano doesn’t have a long list of safety features to boast. While it isn’t something worth showing off, the buyers were certainly aware of this fact.
With no ABS, 3 point seatbelt, airbags, the car isn’t particularly a “safe car”. So much so, that the lakh rupee wonder scored a zero star rating in the Global NCAP crash test.
How’s The Ride?
To bust a myth present out there, the Tata Nano actually has a decent ride quality.
Its ample ground clearance makes it go over speed breakers and potholes with ease. Moreover, the steering and suspension are good for some manoeuvrability in tight spots.
However, it is at the high speeds that the car starts to rattle a little which doesn’t make it something worth racing in, per se. The suspensions on the Tata Nano are on the softer side, making it able to absorb the road obstacles.
Power? Let’s Not Go There.
Yes, the car is certainly low on power, there’s no doubt about that. However, the buyers of the vehicle were aware of that fact.
We are sure enough that no one bought a Nano to get that torque running and experience the power. The Tata Nano was made to solve a simple problem and that was commuting. Although it didn’t solve it completely, it was able to work on it.
“It isn’t comfortable”
The Nano isn’t one amazingly comfortable car, granted. But it isn’t too shabby rather. According to many user reviews, the 4 seater vehicle can actually fit in a family quite comfortably.
The thin seats can add to a little misery but the overall suspension is soft enough to compensate for that. There is a lot of body roll when driving around the corners.
Once again, the featureless tag is something that has been around the car since it’s inception. While it may catch you by surprise, the Nano does offer a lot of features in the model hierarchy.
Power windows at the front, front fog lamps, 180 mm ground clearance, a decent enough music system and more. While it might be short at a few places, the Tata Nano has sustained itself on the features front.
The Nano had an uneventful journey throughout. Since its launch till its 1 unit sales last year, the car died a slow death.
While the car had a vision in mind, it couldn’t achieve it. Although, it surely paved a path for the vision to be carried ahead.
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