By on January 1, 2011

Bloomberg has it that Tata’s Nano sales are rebounding after the parent has given the little car some TLC and attention. The Nano sales rose 1136 percent from the month before. In real numbers: 5,784 in December after 509 in November.

That number is 60 percent above a year earlier, but still a far cry from the 9,000 sold in July. And Tata had to do a lot to resuscitate ICU-bound Nano sales.

Tata started an advertising blitz, added more dealers and introduced a $2 per month maintenance option. That in addition to the four-year, 60,000 km warranty, and easier financing.

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17 Comments on “Tata Sales On The Mend...”

  • avatar

    The photo says a lot – where there is interest (as the guys on the bikes exhibit), there is desire. If 1% of that desire is satisfied, well, that’s a lot of cars, and even the tiny Tata uses much more petrol than the motorcycles/scooters that it replaces. We know what that means…

  • avatar

    Sell a billion and voila’,  the country becomes TaTaLand.
    Though LaLaLand lends itself to a niftier nomenclature.

  • avatar

    I’m curious if TaTa has to replace all the Nanos that self-immolated.
    I’m also curious if they can book those replacements as “new sales.”

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t really think there were that many cars that caught fire, possibly in the single digits. It’s just that the launch of the Nano was so high profile that when those few cars caught fire, the news spread around the world.

  • avatar

    With the advent of the Internet it’s become a small, small world. McLuhan’s global village is far smaller than he would have ever thought. There are no “emerging markets” any more. They have all become aspirational markets. Indian’s are not ignorant. Create something that you try and sell “because that is what you can afford” won’t fly since your potential market *knows* what is available. You give them second best, weirdly designed or poorly made and they *will* know it. Try to hide bad word of mouth and it will leak.

    All that said, I do feel a little sorry for Tata. They tried to innovate, got caught in the gears of politics and have released a failure. I don’t think that this will ever be a success even if it gets a ground up redesign. They will need to do a conventional vehicle and do something about the factory. It could be just that the price point is unsupportable.

  • avatar

    What’s up with the flowers?  I’m pretty sure this was explained on another thread about the Nano, but I can’t recall whether this is a local custom, or just something Nano does for new customers.  What it looks like at first glance is they’re using this Nano for a hearse and there isn’t enough room for the flower arrangement.

    • 0 avatar

      I assume the ornamentation is a leftover from a Poojha, a Hindu ceremony for blessing a new car.  The process is explained in this excerpt from CNBC’s documentary “Ford: Rebuilding an American Icon.” When I was listening to this excerpt I swore I heard Phil LeBeau say “Peugeot.” That would certainly have explained the lemons under the tires! I say so lovingly as a still-recovering former owner of a 505 wagon.

    • 0 avatar

      I thought that that CNBC thing of Ford was very well done for a non-automotive news organization. I told LeBeau that when I saw him at the Chevy Volt launch at Poletown. He graciously accepted the complement.

  • avatar

    The rear-engine architecture is a bogus idea fundamendally. It could work back in VW Beetle days, but not anymore. It goes true for Mitsubishi’s “better Nano than Nano” i as well. Automotive journalists may fall over themselves praising these cars as much as they want, but people want place to put their things.

    • 0 avatar

      “The rear-engine architecture is a bogus idea fundamendally.”
      Why do you think that? This is an exercise in efficient packaging not designing a racing car!

    • 0 avatar

      Why is it fundamentally flawed? Sure, there are disadvantages, most important being trailing throttle oversteer I suppose, but there are definite pluses to ass-engined cars in terms of acceleration, braking and handling, over conventional engine in the front RWD layout. Most of it has to do with weight transfer.
      I say that not as a Porschephile but as someone who favors mid-engine designs for sports cars.

      Also, it’s worth noting that Mercedes-Benz chose a rear-engine layout when they designed the smart cars. Like the man said, it’s about efficient packaging.

      There are many ways to make performance cars and often success lies more in the execution of the details than in the basic design. There are cars with non-independent front and rear suspensions that can be made to handle and corner.

  • avatar

    If Tata could reverse engineer the Honda 600 for the Indian market and price it competitively, I bet it would sell.

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