Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Tata Nexon Compact SUV - Review, Price & Technical Specs

Tata Motors, one of the most unbeatable players in the commercial vehicle segment, is very much on course for a complete overhaul in the passenger car segment.They are attempting this through three important characteristic,namely Style (they call it an "Impact" design), feature loaded cars and more importantly aggressive pricing.

tata nexon compact suv review


When they launched the Tiago campaign a couple of years back, you got a sense of what's coming ahead in the Tata stable. Fast forward two years later, they are cruising to victory with three launches in different segments and definitely a hatrick of success. This includes the Tiago (Hatchback), Tata Hexa(SUV), Tata Tigor (Styleback / Compact Sedan) and the upcoming Tata Nexon (Compact SUV).

Nexon incidentally stands for "Next-On" and that says  everything.


Why the Sub 4-metre cars?

Before we go into the review of the Tata Nexon , one should understand why automobile manufacturers including Tata Motors, Maruti or Ford prefer to design sub 4-meter cars.

Overall the taxes for large cars had a good redutction post GST. Even the Hexa's price was reduced by INR 2 Lakhs. However when you consider the actual GST% it's lesser for "Small" cars that are lesser than 4 metres and have an engine displacement upto 1.2L in a petrol vehicle and 1.5L in a diesel engine. These attract only 29% total tax including CESS . For all other  >4 meter cars (Mid size or SUV's), it is a whopping 43%.

This is difference of anywhere between 50-80,000 Rs in taxes alone for the smaller cars. So apart from the hatchback of Tiago, Tigor (Sedan) , the Nexon despite being a SUV will still come under the 28% tax bracket, since the variants fall under the engine displacement limit and literally 5 millimeters shorter than 4 meters.

nexon gst price
GST slab for Cars

Tata Nexon Vs Competitors (Brezza , EcoSport, TUV300)

The Nexon's design combines a look of a sports coupe and a SUV. It takes head on, primarily the Ford Ecosport , Mahindra TUV 300 and the Maruti Suzuki Brezza as key competitors , the latter being more formidable and successful.

Nexon may want to edge the Brezza in several aspects in terms of pricing, style and more importantly the power packed features. 

Be it the 209mm ground clearance(11m higher than Brezza), HD infotainment screen with 8 Harman speakers or the Coupe design along with 3 drive modes, Nexon stands out tough against others. Brezza currently edges ahead in terms of performance and additional mileage of 5-6 KMs(which may or may not be an important factor in this segment)

Key Features of Tata Nexon

Here are some of the key features why the Nexon stands out in the market, much less for any segment:

tata nexon compact suv key features


Nexon Engine

Petrol Variant : The Nexon is powered with a 6 speed transmission (another first in this segment), 1.2 L Revotorq Engine 108 BHP @ 5000 RPM and Torque of 180NM. This is a significantly higher than the 89BHP present in the Maruthi Brezza. . Claimed Mileage for ARAI standard is 19 kpl (but in city conditions it should be anywhere between 11-15).

Diesel Variant : Just like the petrol version, this also has a 6 speed manual transmission gearbox . It has a 1.5L Turbo Diesel engine . Power is108 BHP @ 3,750 RPM . Claimed Mileage is 24 kpl (though in city conditions it may come to roughly 18-20).  Fuel Tank Capacity is 44L.

Nexon Exteriors

tata nexon compact suv

 

The 3995 mm long SUV has a significant ground clearance of 209mm (11mm more than the Brezza and Ecosport). In the front, the chrome radiator grille brings out the signature Tata style, along with striking LED tail lamps. They even have LED lights for the number plate and this adds a nice touch to the detailing.


tata nexon wheelbase


On the wheels front, they have added a 16 inch alloy wheels that makes a significant difference in driving, esp in cornering and uphills. The more the wheel base , the higher confidence and grip you get on the road and this is very much true for the Nexon (the top end variant is rumoured to even sport an 18inch wheels. More the merrier I guess).


The metal roof rails at the top just makes the overall exterior all the more attractive.

tata nexon roof rails


In short the new "Impact" design methodology of Tata Motors stands out vividly in the Nexon.

 

Nexon Interiors

tata nexon interiors review

More than the exteriors , the interiors seems to take up most of the limelight. A premium finish Dual Tone front seat, comfortable rear seats that offers a lot of spacing and leg room and Air conditioning vents with individual controls are some of the key highlights.

The front floating Infotainment system with HD screens mounted on top of the dashboard is quite distinctive and probably the first thing you notice when you sit inside.  The next thing you see is a "Grand Central Console" as they refer to it right beside the handbrake. This contains a sliding tambour door with a neat storage space inside along with a Drive mode change wheel.

tata nexon central console



Glove Box : Nexon surprises everyone with a huge sliding "cooled" and "illuminated" glove box. Not only does it help to store your consumables, but you can actually fit in a 15 inch laptop inside quite comfortably.

tata nexon glove box


Overall storage capacity is 350L, altough with foldable rear seats, you can add another 100-150L to this capacity.

tata nexon boot space

Drive Modes & Performance

 

tata nexon 6 speed gear

Unlike the Hexa, the Nexon comes with a front wheel drive mode only. However this is more than sufficient for a compact SUV segment and the ride is smoothly handled with the right "drive" modes in place for the respective road conditions. The Diesel variant obviously outperforms the Petrol variant in uphills, despite carrying 3+ people inside and the Air Conditioning mode on .

The 3 driving modes : Sport, City and Eco comes super handy in different roads. If you are running low on Fuel , you can switch to Eco and this boosts your mileage , with slightly increased strain on the engine. If you want to cruise at 120+ in a highway, just go for the sports mode and for every other routine drive, switch back to the City mode, adapt for increased gear shifts. However it would have been marginally better if the petrol variant had slightly more power to get that extra boost it deserves.

Nexon Ride Quality

The leg space at the back is quite large compared to any other cars, and you can be quite assured of a very comfortable journey irrespective of where you are sitting. The rear middle seat can be converted to an arm rest . The comfort factor is excellent and the ride quality is not compromised in any way.

Nexon Price in India

The 6-speed manual transmission Nexon is "expected" to be priced between 6.5-7 Laks for the Petrol version and 7.5-8 Lakhs for the Diesel one. On-Road prices and will vary based on GST taxes.

While at it, do read Shrinidhi, Atul, Maitreni, Umang and Danish's review of the Nexon.

Conclusion

Tata Motors has the work cut out here. The launch of the fantastic Tata Nexon has certainly given them all the ammunition they want, to make the conversion happen. Yet its competition against the well settled Brezza is going to be fierce. Tata was once king in the multi utility segment with the Sumo. They tasted a fair share of success with the latest SUV "Hexa".  Now, the compact SUV segment is going to be a little tougher.

Convincing a Ecosport or a Brezza buyer to rather opt for Nexon, a new entrant from Tata Motors is going to be difficult, take time and needs a good word of mouth. Yet they have what every marketer needs under his belt : A fantastic product! This alone could sweep the tide in favour of Tata and their whole new revamped "Impact Design" strategy, as long as they play their cards right.

Instead of "Nexon", it should have rather been named the "Fight is on" !

You can check out more detailed information about the Tata Nexon here.
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1 comments:

Preeti Chauhan said...

I can see that they have retained quite a few features which I liked in the Hexa .