Many months ago, Team ICB was the first motoring publication in the world to scoop the Tata Nano Diesel on testing rounds. We even went ahead to deliver a render of the new bumper design the Nano Diesel would sport. Today, our friends over at OnCars are carrying a bunch of spyshots of the Nano Diesel in action. The car caught on camera shows a deluge of testing equipment on it. One big give away that the car being tested was indeed a diesel variant of the Nano is the bumper design that it features, with cut outs that is specific to the diesel powered model.
Expectations around the Nano Diesel are high given the fact the 800cc, twin cylinder common rail turbo diesel engine of the Nano could deliver a stupendous fuel economy figure of 35 Kmpl+, a figure that will make the Nano Diesel the most fuel efficient car in India, and perhaps the world. If the real world economy of the Nano Diesel manages to stay at the 35 Kmpl mark, the car’s running costs will better that of many two wheelers in India, a move that could result in many two wheeler owners jumping on to four wheels.
Given that the Nano Diesel is yet to see the light of the day in terms of being production ready, the engineers working on the project will be under plenty of pressure to ready the car for a launch in late 2013 or early 2014. In the meantime, Tata Motors will launch the Nano CNG-Petrol dual fuel version. Expect the diesel powered version of the Nano to cost well under INR 3 lakhs, making it the least priced diesel powered car in the world, continuing in the tradition of the petrol powered variant.
Tata Motors desperately needs to shore up the volumes of the Nano as the car’s factory in Sanand, Gujarat, is running at under 40% of its installed capacity of 250,000 cars. Tata Motors needs to run the factory with a production of at least 150,000 units a year in order to break even with the Nano project. So, highly fuel efficient variants of the Nano like the CNG and the Diesel versions will be crucial to Tata Motors’ plans of boosting sales of the Nano hatchback. As of now, Tata Motors is losing money on the Nano project, the continuation of which could eventually force Tata Motors to cull the Nano from its product line up.
Spyshots courtesy OnCars