$2500 Tata Nano : Proton doesn’t stand a chance in India

Posted On 10/01/2008

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$2500 Tata Nano Car Unveiled in India.

Chicago tribute say it, Tata Nano world’s cheapest car.

With a snub nose and a sloping roof, it can fit five people — if they squeeze. And the basic version is spare: there’s no radio, no passenger-side mirror and only one windshield wiper. If you want air conditioning to cope with India’s brutal summers, you need to get the deluxe version.
…………
The chairman, though, insists the car will meet safety standards and pollute even less than motorcycles, passing domestic and European emission standards and averaging about 50 miles per gallon. Girish Wagh, who headed the design team, said it had an oxidation catalytic convertor and it emitted 120 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometer.
…..
The car has seat belts, but no air bags. The Nano is about 10 feet long, 5 feet wide. The 2-cylinder petrol engine delivers 33 horsepower and a top speed of just over 60 mph.

Ford’s Model T, which debuted in 1909 for $825, had a 4-cylinder, 20 horsepower engine with a top speed of 45 mph. The Model T had fuel economy between 13 to 21 miles per gallon.

Tata has said they expect the car to revolutionize the auto industry, and analysts believe the Nano may force other manufacturers to lower their own pricing. French auto maker Renault SA and its Japanese partner, Nissan Motor Co., are trying to determine if they can sell a compact car for less than $3,000.

note
Conversion :
50 miles = 80.46km , 1 gallon = 4.54 liters. 50 mpg = 17km per liter. Malaysia typical compact only manage to make 15km per liter.

The outlook is similar to Smart automobileby Daimler AG. When you building a compact car, there is little design you can go except make it looks like beetle.

The first question is, how they make it. Compare to Malaysia, after few billions of tax payer money channel into national car project, Proton failed to produce a car with cheap mileage. Just look at all Malaysia city, we are swamp with many SOV(Single occupant vehicles). Since Malaysia government are not interested to pay effort to improve public transport, a compact car can solve the huge petrol consumption on subsidiaries, pollutions, parking space as well as the expensive installment.

With Tata Nano, there is little chance Proton can really win on this export market : Tata Nano just seal the lower range Proton market. For mid and high income group, who the hell want to buy a Proton that does not have protection of tax levy on other brand of car?

You wouldn’t know whether China is going to make the same move. Since petrol consumption and pollution is the biggest issue for today China.

No matter how good the Proton management portrait their forecast, it is a counter to avoid. Not until they have the will to make a car below US$ 8000.(RM28,000)

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