TATA, which in 2009 launched the Nano, billed as the world’s cheapest car, unveiled a new, pricier variant of the model in a bid to boost flagging sales.
The latest model, called Nano Twist, targets young people. It has power steering, remote keyless entry, a four-speaker music system with Bluetooth, and a higher ground clearance for rough terrain.
Ranjit Yadav, president of passenger vehicles business at Tata Motors, said the car is “loaded with trendy features” to make it a “smart city car to hang out with.”
When Tata Motors launched the Nano in 2009, analysts said it would revolutionize how millions in India traveled. But after poor sales in recent years it became clear the car’s unique selling point—its low price—had backfired as aspirational Indians shied away from buying a vehicle tagged “the world’s cheapest.”
In December 2013, Tata Motors sold just 554 Nano cars, down 75 percent from 2,202 cars a year earlier.
Tata has been seeking to reposition the car in the market by adding features and making it trendier. Company officials said around 45 percent of Nano drivers are aged between 18 and 34.
The Nano Twist will be sold at a price of $3,800 while the base model costs around $2,400.