Instead of launching the Nano Europa in Europe, Tata Motors will be releasing a production version of its Pixel concept car. Unveiled at the 2011 Geneva Auto Show, the Pixel is a stylish, two-door version of the Nano that Tata describes as “the most package-efficient four-seater in the world.”
The Pixel is equipped with Tata’s own ultra-compact 1.2-litre, three-cylinder diesel engine, which delivers about 60bhp and is mounted under the rear seats, powering the back wheels via a five-speed gearbox.
According to group chairman Ratan Tata, the car will partly replace the previously proposed Nano Europa, as soon as its concept-only swing doors are swapped with two conventional doors and when the engineering of instrumentation and controls is completed.
At only three meters long, the car is about 250mm shorter than the compact Nano. Nevertheless, the car is a full four-seater. It is expected to weigh about 750kg in European trim and have CO2 emissions of under 100g/km of CO2.
Tata said that it’s likely too that the company will launch a four-door Pixel that has similar styling but is built on the original Nano wheelbase. Tata Motors improved the handling of both models and also reduced the noise by making chassis modifications.
Ratan Tata admitted that start-up sales had been slower than initial expectations but he denied that there were any difficulties with the Indian production of the Nano. He explained that the Nano is “a different kind of car,” since it is meant to replace motorcycles in India.
That is why its marketing is different, especially in rural areas where potential consumers are new to cars. He said that the company has already made adjustments to its marketing plans.Europe’s new concept for a city car, Tata Pixel, is introduced by Tata Motors at the Geneva Motor Show 2011. The Tata Pixel, which is derived from the Tata Nano model, is considered the world’s most efficient four-seater, package-wise. Unlike typical city cars, it can comfortably seat four adults in its over three-meter-long body.
Tata Motors’ Managing Director Carl-Peter Forster describes the Tata Pixel as the reflection of their brand’s ideals of a city car, specifically in space optimization, manoeuvrability, and eco-friendliness. Mr. Forster, who is also Tata Motors’ Group CEO, adds that Europe now has the opportunity to have this city car.
Thanks to its zero turn toroidal traction-drive, the Tata Pixel is able to steer and park even in tight spaces. Infinitely Variable Transmission (IVT) creates a 2.6 meter-turning circle radius by assisting in the outer rear wheel forwards-inner rear wheel backwards rotation, as the front wheels rotate at acute angles. Even in the tightest of spaces, passengers can effortlessly get in and out of the car using the 'scissor' doors that rotate from the front in an upward motion.
The new styling is emphasized by the extensive roofline and minimal overhangs on the front and rear of the car. Incorporating connectivity in the Tata Pixel’s design includes allowing the driver control of the key functions of their car using their smart phones. This is made possible by Tata Motors’ human-machine interface (HMI) called 'My Tata Connect,' the brand’s first integrated HMI concept.
Tata Pixel’s animated performance is attributable to the three-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine, with a 1.2 litre capacity, located at the rear. The diesel engine’s low-friction design features a variable coolant system, oil pump, and quick warm-up technologies. The Tata Pixel restores European combined cycle (NEDC) at 3.4 l/100km fuel economy and just 89g/km CO2 emissions with its optimized aerodynamic drag, stop-start technology, quick battery charging, and low rolling-resistance tyres.