By on November 11, 2010

The Tata Nano was seen as the car which will set the Indian car market on fire. Unfortunately, it seems it’ll also roast its owners.

After several reports of pyromaniac Nanos, the BBC reports that Tata offers free safety upgrades for Nano customers.

But this isn’t a recall, insists the company. They say they are merely providing customer with additional safety features. (What, a fire extinguisher? A 112 decal?)

Not only is this a PR disaster, but also a financial one. The profit margin on a Nano is slim at best. So to conduct a recall free safety upgrades will be costly and probably hack away at the already anorexic profit margin.

Tata said that teams of internal and international experts concluded that the fires were “specific to the cars which had such incidents” rather than a general fault. Now that’s reassuring.

While doing their research, Tata also found serious faults. With their customers. They said that instances of “additional foreign electrical equipment having been installed or foreign material left on the exhaust system” had been discovered. “Foreign” meaning non-Nano, not Pakistani, we hope.

Tata also said that it was up to the customer whether to take the upgrades or not.

I’d be extremely interested to meet the person who bought a Nano, read this story and though “Nah! I’ll take the risk…” If they do, that’s natural selection for you.

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