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Old 15th August 2013, 18:51   #556
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With 30% gradeability and a 180 mm ground clearance, the Nano should take you everywhere where a 'car' may take you, and a few places where an 'SUV' or 'MUV' might.

Rest assured though it looks small, it's actually big. And there is absolutely no problem in climbing gradients, from running or from standstill.
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Old 15th August 2013, 21:21   #557
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I posted this on another Nano thread, copied here as well since it may be of interest to Nano owners and those on the fence!

Check this out!
http://topic.ibnlive.in.com/narain-k...rA-204851.html
Or, read this:
Ace Indian Formula 1 driver Narain Karthikeyan recently drove the Tata Nano at the Madras Motorsports Club racetrack at Sriperumbudur along with numerous supercars which included Porsches, Lamborghinis, BMWs & Mercedes Benz for the annual Autocar India track day.

Dubbed as the fastest Indian in the world, Narain was absolutely surprised with the Nano when the standard road car (with no modifications whatsoever) blazed the lap time charts setting an astonishing time just of 2 mins and 45 secs. The rear engine along with rear wheel drive helped Narain in accelerating out of corners much faster and easier, and
Narain as well as the experts at Autocar were overwhelmed as pre lap calculations based on times set by other cars, suggested that the Nano wouldn’t do a lap time of less than 3 minutes.
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Old 15th August 2013, 21:35   #558
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Originally Posted by Sesh2000 View Post
I'm now even more confused about the car's performance. Any advice from actual Nano owners would be highly appreciated. Thanks.
I agree to honeybee. I have a Xylo and a Nano so can make a fair comparison. You don't have to worry about the pickup. Even with full A/c you don't feel any issue. In every respect we are happy with the car. The only minor issue I have felt is getting used to the clutch adjustment.
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Old 15th August 2013, 21:45   #559
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Originally Posted by Sesh2000 View Post
I'm now even more confused about the car's performance. Any advice from actual Nano owners would be highly appreciated. Thanks.
It can take most gradients on our roads with much ease. Test drove this vehicle with 5 people on board on a steep incline. Put off only by the sound(only reason) and social pressure - do you really need a 'cheap' car talk!
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Old 15th August 2013, 22:21   #560
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I was a bit deflated to read about the Nano's [in]ability to negotiate higher gradients, especially from a stationary position.
I have spotted Nanos on the Mettupalayam Ooty hill roads, which are quite steep with a lot of hair-pin bends. (I have never driven one myself though)
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Old 15th August 2013, 23:01   #561
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Originally Posted by Sesh2000 View Post
I was a bit deflated to read about the Nano's [in]ability to negotiate higher gradients[quoting the relevant bit]:

I'm now even more confused about the car's performance. Any advice from actual Nano owners would be highly appreciated. Thanks.
I recently visited matheran ( By train ) and had a good chat with one of the taxi driver ( From Neral to Dasturi ), i wanted to know if i can get my nano to climb this ghat, he very quickly said why not, according to him Nano can climb this ghat even with 4 people on board and many people do it.

Below are the ghats which i have done with full load.

Sinhagad fort ghat ( Pune )
Bhimashankar
Satara - Kaas - Bamnoli & return.
Lavasa
Gaganbawda ( 3 on board )

No issues till date , but i wish to do Matheran some day, that would be the ultimate test since i feel nano will struggle on one or two hair pin bends. ( the ones before which we have a 1st gear board )

Nano is capable of handling most ghat sections which you would encounter on majority of roads.

Last edited by silverado : 15th August 2013 at 23:13.
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Old 16th August 2013, 00:33   #562
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I've been to Yercaud (Tamil Nadu) with 4 OnBoard in my Nano. Not one time in my climb to the hill did I need to use the 1st gear, I easily managed to stay between 15-30kmph in 2nd and 3rd even in the hair-pin bends. All that and I still managed to get 22kmpl in that whole drive (B'lore - Yercaud - B'lore). The RWD gives quite some traction and the weight of the engine probably helps too. I have the GPS tracks too (with time taken, speed etc), will dig out & upload by tomorrow.

Point is, given its weight & the RWD, Nano can definitely do very well in ghats. Moreover the independent suspension & 180mm SUV-like GC really helps.
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Old 16th August 2013, 06:52   #563
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Thank you to everyone above [and those still to do] so for sharing his/her first-hand experiences.
I'm more confident now about seriously considering the Nano. The funny thing about this car is that it is loved by its actual owners, but is sneered at by those who don't own it.
It does sound a bit noisier than comparable cars, but, personally, as someone seeking to migrate upwards from a motorcycle, it is not really a major issue
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Old 16th August 2013, 07:36   #564
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To be fair to the question, no one has quite answered this part of the review which says:
Quote:
However, and shockingly, on three occasions (twice on a Pawna hill and once on the Bungalow approach road), I had to ask my passengers to get off as the Nano just wouldn’t climb with 4 onboard. The only way to climb these two sections was to build a run-up and then use the resultant momentum to reach the top. If you stop in the middle of a steep incline, the Nano will stubbornly refuse to go further. I even got a little brutal with the clutch, slipping et al, but the Nano wouldn’t budge. The thought of driving a Nano in stop & go traffic on a steep ghat section scares the wits out of me. It is important to note that a 100cc motorcycle and a 796cc Alto had absolutely no trouble in tackling the steep inclines spoken of here.
I haven't come across this, because I haven't come across such a situation. It is probably a rare one - I know the places referred to in the review.
Doing a steep climb with a loaded car in stop start traffic is a skill. Those of us that have done the Mumbai Pune ghats in the good old Fiat 1100s up to the eighties know what it did to the car and to the driver's blood pressure. Would the Nano have pulled off what the old Fiats could, when well handled? I can't say.
On the other hand, I vividly remember my experience in my 1.3 Esteem about 15 years ago, climbing a gravelly tar road to a bungalow in the Mulshi area. In a loaded car, the only way to make it to the top of a 4 kms twisty narrow stretch was to take it at speed, like a rally/hill climb race driver. I chickened out half way, had to stop and the car wouldn't move - with all the weight at the back facing uphill, the front wheel drive kept spinning the front wheels, I had to ask my passengers to get out and walk. While they were doing so, a 1L Gypsy went past at a comfortable speed, being rear wheel driven. Would the Nano have done just the same? Perhaps, again hard to say now.
One thing I can say - the way traffic moves on the highways today, I would not venture out in the Nano on them, given the lack of airbags and ABS in the car. As a city runabout, it is perfect.

Last edited by Mpower : 16th August 2013 at 21:03. Reason: There is function that allows you to insert quotes. Last button on toolbar that looks like a text box
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Old 16th August 2013, 11:18   #565
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Default Re: Tata Nano : Test Drive & Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
To be fair to the question, no one has quite answered this part of the review which says:
Quote
However, and shockingly, on three occasions (twice on a Pawna hill and once on the Bungalow approach road), I had to ask my passengers to get off as the Nano just wouldn’t climb with 4 onboard. The only way to climb these two sections was to build a run-up and then use the resultant momentum to reach the top. If you stop in the middle of a steep incline, the Nano will stubbornly refuse to go further. I even got a little brutal with the clutch, slipping et al, but the Nano wouldn’t budge. The thought of driving a Nano in stop & go traffic on a steep ghat section scares the wits out of me. It is important to note that a 100cc motorcycle and a 796cc Alto had absolutely no trouble in tackling the steep inclines spoken of here.
Unquote
I haven't come across this, because I haven't come across such a situation. It is probably a rare one - I know the places referred to in the review.
Doing a steep climb with a loaded car in stop start traffic is a skill. Those of us that have done the Mumbai Pune ghats in the good old Fiat 1100s up to the eighties know what it did to the car and to the driver's blood pressure. Would the Nano have pulled off what the old Fiats could, when well handled? I can't say.
On the other hand, I vividly remember my experience in my 1.3 Esteem about 15 years ago, climbing a gravelly tar road to a bungalow in the Mulshi area. In a loaded car, the only way to make it to the top of a 4 kms twisty narrow stretch was to take it at speed, like a rally/hill climb race driver. I chickened out half way, had to stop and the car wouldn't move - with all the weight at the back facing uphill, the front wheel drive kept spinning the front wheels, I had to ask my passengers to get out and walk. While they were doing so, a 1L Gypsy went past at a comfortable speed, being rear wheel driven. Would the Nano have done just the same? Perhaps, again hard to say now.
One thing I can say - the way traffic moves on the highways today, I would not venture out in the Nano on them, given the lack of airbags and ABS in the car. As a city runabout, it is perfect.
Sawyer, the old FIATs were adequately powered. The 1089 CC engine generated a very respectable 48 BHP (good for those times) and max torque of 7.6 (not very sure of the torque figures). We had the 1100D for about 13-14 years and Ranchi is again a place which is at a relatively higher elevation than the surrounding places. The car used to manage the inclines pretty well with all loaded with people & luggage; that too so many times. Though the later padminis I guess had lower BHP, think about 39-40. The rear wheel drive set up is surely good for takling the inclines, but won't help if the engine does not have the low grunt. When you are using the momentum for climbing, its a different thing altogether, but if you are gradually getting on the incline, the torque really matters a lot; which apart from the engine also depends upon the gearbox ratios. A good engine, if not mated well with a gearbox would put out very ordinary performance. There are various cars in the market with same engine mated with different gearboxes which differ a lot in speed, torque & acceleration like the Fiat's diesel powering the Swift/ D'zire/ Manza/ Linea etc.

Last edited by saket77 : 16th August 2013 at 11:22.
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Old 16th August 2013, 11:30   #566
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Sawyer, the old FIATs were adequately powered. The 1089 CC engine generated a very respectable 48 BHP (good for those times) and max torque of 7.6 (not very sure of the torque figures). Though the later padminis I guess had lower BHP, think about 39-40.
My memory is that it was 44hp, I learnt my driving on a 1971 model, and drove it for close to 18 years. I don't think torque was even specified. The one litre Esteem was also about 45hp, the 1.3 carburetted was about 68, and the FI version of the 1.3 was about 80.

The Nano is around 38. But lighter than the Esteem, and a lot lighter than the Fiat.

With 4 forward gears as in the Fiat, the gear ratios can't be vastly different.

So to me it is a bit of a puzzle as to why the Nano can't match the Fiat 1100 climb performance. It is quite possible the Fiat too would have failed as the Nano is said to have. Also, although the 796 alto is said to have succeeded, it isn't clear if it was carrying the same load as the Nano.
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Old 16th August 2013, 15:31   #567
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My memory is that it was 44hp, I learnt my driving on a 1971 model, and drove it for close to 18 years. I don't think torque was even specified.
Could be, the one I had was 1967 model, FIAT 1100 Delight. It had 48 BHP. Padminis had a tad lesser power. Yes, torque was not specified, I checked on some website and quoted that figure.

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So to me it is a bit of a puzzle as to why the Nano can't match the Fiat 1100 climb performance. It is quite possible the Fiat too would have failed as the Nano is said to have. Also, although the 796 alto is said to have succeeded, it isn't clear if it was carrying the same load as the Nano.
Nano has two cylinders while Fiat/ Padmini had 4. So, by construction, they should be able to generate more twisting power due to the extra cylinders. The Alto may have 'just' made it. Also, the theory that 'pulling is easier than pushing' may help the cause for the Alto.

Last edited by saket77 : 16th August 2013 at 15:38.
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Old 16th August 2013, 15:55   #568
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It does sound a bit noisier than comparable cars, but, personally, as someone seeking to migrate upwards from a motorcycle, it is not really a major issue
Noisier is from outside, why bother?! Inside you leave the sound behind you when you are on the move. And insulation inside from the noise is also much improved now.
The best thing to do is to take a test drive of the 2013 car, that is now with dealers.
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Old 17th August 2013, 12:18   #569
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I've been to Yercaud (Tamil Nadu) with 4 OnBoard in my Nano. Not one time in my climb to the hill did I need to use the 1st gear, I easily managed to stay between 15-30kmph in 2nd and 3rd even in the hair-pin bends. All that and I still managed to get 22kmpl in that whole drive (B'lore - Yercaud - B'lore)... I have the GPS tracks too (with time taken, speed etc), will dig out & upload by tomorrow.....
Link : http://app.strava.com/activities/40507025

O.T. : I've stopped using this app since long, there's another app called Sports Tracker that's good.
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Old 17th August 2013, 14:12   #570
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I haven't come across this, because I haven't come across such a situation. It is probably a rare one - I know the places referred to in the review.
Yep, it's certainly not an everyday climb, although some parking lots & outstation roads might pose a similar incline.

Fact is, other cars - including Maruti Altos - do the climb just as well in 1st. The Nano, however, completely failed in this department. Rather than lack of power, the reason is a 1st gear that's too tall for the size of the engine.

The long road in question is this one (RHS of the pic):

Tata Nano : Test Drive & Review-p1280295.jpg

Quote:
On the other hand, I vividly remember my experience in my 1.3 Esteem about 15 years ago, climbing a gravelly tar road to a bungalow in the Mulshi area. In a loaded car, the only way to make it to the top of a 4 kms twisty narrow stretch was to take it at speed, like a rally/hill climb race driver.
I remember my Esteem also struggling on some hotel approach roads in Mahabaleshwar. Poor low end torque + taller gearing!
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