The Tata Nano is a revolutionary car for its simplicity and price. The three-cylinder, small wheeled car costs just over $2,000, and has opened the car market in India to millions of people. The next cheapest car for sale in India, the Maruti 800, costs almost $4,000. It is cheap, efficient transportation. Unfortunately, it still runs on gas, and the extra cost and limited range of electric vehicles aren’t likely to catch on anytime soon in India.
But Europe is already well along the path to electric cars and Tata has chosen to take advantage of that fact. At the Geneva Auto Show, Tata unveiled an electric E-Nano concept that they say will sell in Europe within three years.
The Nano is the perfect platform for an electric car. It is a small, lightweight, four-person city car; it isn’t mean for long range driving, but it is intended for mass production. If Tata could produce an affordable, practical electric car with a decent range, it could jump start the electric car movement. Tata has already laid out plans for the Nano Europa, which is a top of the line Indian-market Nano that also meets European crash standards. Plans are to begin selling an electric Nano in Britain and Scandinavia first, and then expand across the European continent.
Tata had previously announced plans to bring the Nano to the US as well. Both Europe and America have emerging electric vehicle infrastructures, though arguably Europe is farther along right now. Does that mean we might be in line for an electric Nano too? I should hope so, though I still think it would look (and sell) better as a coupe here in America. The E-Nano is purported to have a range of about 100 miles, with acceleration on par with a frightened sow; 0-37 mph in ten seconds. The batteries are “super polymer lithium-ion”, which are being used in the upcoming Indica Vista EV as well.
No word in pricing or charging capabilities, but it isn’t likely to be all that expensive. How much would you be willing to pay for 100 miles of gas-free driving in a tiny, bare-bones car with the performance of a sponge?
Source: Green Car Advisor | Image: Tata