The past one year has witnessed a major transformation of Indian government’s inclination towards electric vehicles. Fast Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric vehicle policy has started giving much-needed FAME to electric and hybrid cars. Till date, very few cars like Mahindra e2o, eVerito, Toyota Prius and Camry Hybrid are the ones which enjoy policy benefits. Recent prices cuts due to incentives from the government have set the ball rolling in favor of these cars. Now when the atmosphere is all electrified, there is a strong reason to believe that recently spied Tata Nano test mule is nothing but an electric vehicle prototype.
This opening on the side of Tata Nano could be an external fuel filler or plug-in socket for charging. Image Source: Team-BHP
The higher purchase price has proven to be the most deteriorating factor for prospective buyers, apart from the limited range of a car. Now, the incentives doled out by government eases out this initial burden. Further, the government is promoting the production of cheaper Lithium batteries which will again lower the prices. If all goes well, electric vehicle market is set to gain momentum, at least in urban India. Currently, Mahindra e2o is the most affordable electric car in India. Mahindra’s arch rivals Tata Motors, have small nimble Nano in their portfolio which can be converted to be a fully electric vehicle to challenge e2o.
The spied car is nothing but a Tata Nano with an external fuel filler cap like opening on its left side and missing rear door handles. One can see it as a new addition to make Nano more conventional. But the lowered suspension hints towards some additional weight towards the rear end of the car. We all know that Lithium ion or lithium polymer batteries, used in any electric car, are very heavy. Thus, we can link the lowered rear suspension of the test mule to the car being an electric powered unit. Already a new, more powerful and feature-loaded variant of Nano – codenamed the pelican, is undergoing testing rounds. So this also rules out the possibility of this mule testing more powerful engine. Which strengthens the possibility of this test mule being an EV.
Lowered suspension of this GenX Nano suggests possible placement of heavy Li-ion or Li-po batteries at the back. Image Source: Rushlane
Tata Nano, which measures 3099 mm X 1325 mm X 1652 mm ( L X B X H), despite its smaller footprint offer lot of cabin space and is feature packed too. The GenX Nano offers the electrically assisted power steering, AMT, AC, music system with Bluetooth, USB, and AUX connectivity. On the other hand, Mahindra e2o measures 3280 mm X 1514 mm X 1560 m ( L X B X H ) but lacks on interiors space especially at the rear seat. This e2o excels on features front with all digital console, gearless electric drive, hill hold assist, start-stop push button, rear seat with ISOFIX mounts, projector headlamps etc. Imagine if Tata pulls off the job of launching an electric Nano with a justifiable price tag, it would turn out to be a win – win situation for customers as well as for the brand Nano. We hope this test mule is Tata Nano with the electric powertrain.
The e2o is powered by a 3-phase induction motor, delivers peak power of 19 kW and torque of 53Nm