World's cheapest car gets upmarket makeover

World's cheapest car gets upmarket makeover

The Tata Nano – launched in 2009 as the world's cheapest car – is to get a makeover to attract buyers who have been put off by the car's low-budget image.

Tata – owners of the British brands Jaguar and Land Rover – has repositioned the Nano in the Indian market as a more upmarket city-car, rather than basic, utilitarian transport.
It has suffered image problems since its market introduction, despite Tata's hopes that it would appeal to low income families looking to enter the car-buying market, with its 100,000 rupee (£1,400) list price.

The Nano is currently not available in Europe as its cheap construction means it cannot pass the required safety tests.

"We are now focusing on increasing the features and the perceived value of the Nano with every subsequent model launch," said Tata chairman Cyrus Mistry, speaking to BBC News.

"We are now focusing on making it a smart city car and targeting the young customers."

Unveiling his plans at the company's annual shareholder's meeting, he said that the newly revised Nanos would be fitted with power steering and improved interior and exterior trim. It will also be available in a wider range of colours and return greater fuel economy.

This is not the first time Tata has injected some luxury into the Nano. It previously unveiled a model which had been lavished with £2.8million worth of precious metals and stones.

Unfortunately the company neglected to modify any of the internal components, so despite the additional bling, it still came with just one windscreen wiper and a puny 33bhp 0.6-litre engine.
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