Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Friday 11 January 2008

Indian firm Tata unveils 1 Lakh car!

Quite a concept, a 1 Lakh car. For just over Rs100,000 (about £1,277, €1,700, $2,500) a lot of Indians will soon be able to own a 5-seater all-weather vehicle as an alternative to the ubiquitous 50cc scooter with a family and often a fair amount of luggage precariously balanced on top. I imagine if this project is a success there will soon be a clamour for it to be available in other countries, and possibly not just in the third-world. According to an AFP summary box included in this BBC article, the Tata Nano meets European emissions standards, although there is no mention of its possible Euro NCAP rating (wikipedia article on Euro NCAP is here).

It seems to be relatively fuel-efficient car and will undoubtedly meet the aspirations of a lot of moderately affluent Indians. I might even consider buying one myself, except for this nagging worry that it might be a death-trap; some of the other inexpensive imported vehicles on sale in recent years in the UK (although still a lot more costly than this one) certainly never received very high marks for safety from consumers' organisations. However, I certainly don't wish to pour cold water on Tata's remarkable achievement.

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