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Review: Tata Nano Twist
Driven January 2014
If there was one feature the Tata Nano (cheapest car on offer in the country), could do with – it would have to be power steering. Nobody in this day and age appreciated the fact that you have to wrestle the steering wheel to point the car in a certain direction, especially while parking.
But that has changed. Tata has now addressed that issue with the newly launched variant of the little city slicker - the Nano Twist. With the Twist, Tata Motors has sought the assistance of Bosch, and German automotive engineering giants ZF Friedrichshafen AG, and installed a brushless electric power steering motor into the Nano with the intention of making the car easier to drive and park. And boy, has it made a difference.
In essence, the Twist is the refreshed Nano that’s powered by the same 34.5bhp and 51Nm producing 2-cyl, 624cc motor the company came out with mid-2013, with the addition of Electric Power Assisted Steering (EPAS) and a new information display cluster.
Visual differences that separate the Nano with power steering's exterior from the ones that don’t offer the feature are the ‘XT’ and ‘Twist’ badging on the rear of the car. There’s also a new colour on offer as well – behold, the Damson Purple.
Inside the Twist, the centrally-located information cluster is all-new. It houses a digital clock, LED fuel and engine temperature gauges and distance to empty display, in addition to the standard fare of trip meter, warning lights and an analog speedometer.
Thanks to the EPAS, manoeuvring the Nano in traffic isn’t a problem and you can tell of the tremendous difference from the non-power assisted Nano variants when driving at low speeds, while parking, or even at attempting to quickly make use of its 4-metre turning radius in tight situations.
Company has reconfigured the positioning of the clutch pedal, which now feels a tad better to use. What's evidently clear is that Tata have refined the NVH levels of the new Nano variant, with the Twist no longer sounding like you’re pottering a lawnmower around town.
Tata had previously improved on the Nano in the last refreshed version - the revamped the cabin with plusher interior cladding, Bluetooth entertainment system, twin glove boxes with fewer panel gaps, a new gearshift console which makes the power window switches more accessible, and the seats actually having some cushioning and don’t give you the impression that you’re seated on plastic chairs wrapped in thick cloth.
At Rs 2.36 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), the Twist is priced approximately Rs 13,000 more than the previous top-of-the-line, LX variant that doesn’t feature power steering. Post the refresh and the addition of power steering, the Nano now feels more user-friendly and a more complete package at tackling inner city commuting.
2-cyl, 624cc, 34.5bhp, 51Nm, 4M, Top Speed: 105kph (limited), Fuel Tank Capacity: 15litres, 25kpl (claimed), Rs 2.36 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi)
The Twist variant makes the Nano come across as a neater package than before, for an entry-level city commuter vehicle.