Tatas start GenX Nano to take on Maruti Alto and Hyundai Eon
Tata Motors, whose world-renowned Nano has been struggling for quite some time, on Tuesday launched all-new version of the entry-level car -- priced up to Rs 2.99 lakh -- that sports an array of features, including automatic transmission and <g data-gr-id="26">bluetooth</g> connectivity. Repositioned as a smart city car, the GenX Nano is pitted against the market leaders in the entry-level hatchback segment such as Maruti Alto and Hyundai Eon.
The new car, which comes in five variants -- the XE, XM, XT with manual transmission, the XMA and XTA with automatic transmission -- and in seven colours, is priced in the range of Rs 2.10 lakh to Rs 2.99 lakh, ex-showroom Mumbai. The GneX Nano is the third avatar since the maiden launch five years ago and the Nano Twist around two years back. But none of them could revive sales. In fiscal 2014-15, the Nano sales hit a rock bottom, falling over 20 <g data-gr-id="32">per cent</g> to 16,901 units from 21,129 units in the previous fiscal.
With the launch of the GenX Nano, Tata Motors will discontinue all other models except the CNG variant of Nano which created history as the world’s cheapest car when launched in March 2009 selling the initial 1 lakh units at Rs 1 lakh as promised by the then chairman Ratan Tata before the launch. Since then the company has sold more than 2.67 lakh units. When asked about the pre-launch response to the new car and whom the company is targeting, Tata Motors president for passenger vehicles business unit Mayank Pareek said out of the 2.7 lakh existing Nano customers, they have contacted almost 2.5 lakh with a ‘one-for-one’ offer, offering them an upgrade to an automatic transmission model. “Out of this 2.5 lakh customer outreach we did, over 11,000 have positively responded. And that’s good number and a fantastic response,” Pareek said.
When asked whether the GenX Nano will also face the same fate as its previous two launches - the Bolt and the Zest, which could not meet demand due to supply constraints, Pareek did not offer a straight reply. He said the Nano plant at Sanand near Ahmedabad is running at a low 15 per cent capacity against an installed capacity of 2.5 lakh units per annum (demand has been falling continuously over the years).
The new Nano comes with advanced technological features and will be available for sale across the country from today in over 450 Tata Motors sales outlets, Pareek added.