Tata develops the Nano for European tastes with the new Pixel city car concept, unveiled at the 2011 Geneva motor show.
Tata? So it’s a basic car for the developing world, rough edges and all?
The Nano has won praise for its smart cost-effective engineering but the general fit, finish and feature set of the existing Tata range has left something to be desired when viewed against established European competition.
The Pixel aims to rectify that with advanced technology and features on a Nano-size city car footprint. Everyone talks about the Nano’s cost, yet its fundamental brilliance is equally its packaging.
Tata Pixel – the lowdown
As with the Nano, the Pixel is an ultra-compact four-seater, with the powertrain mounted in the rear, and driving the rear wheels. For the Pixel Tata has debuted a 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbodiesel.
The headline efficiency figures are 89g/km CO2, and fuel economy of 83mpg on the European combined cycle.
One engineering highlight is the ‘Zero-turn’ transmission, featuring a toroidal traction drive Infinitely Variable Transmission (IVT) created by Torotrak. That’s a very complicated way of saying it can execute an extremely tight turning circle of 2.8 metres, using the drive wheels rotating in opposite directions to twist the car around.
Inside, the Tata Pixel boasts the first application of the new “My Tata Connect” infotainment system, offering the expected synchronisation with smartphones and operation by a central touch screen.
The exterior styling with its deep side window treatment is reminiscent of Kia’s Pop concept from the Paris 2010 show, and features forward-hinged scissor doors to provide access to the cabin.