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Old 23rd January 2024, 14:52   #1
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Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review

Tiago EV Ownership Review



About 6 months back, we brought home a Tropical Mist Tiago EV LR Tech Lux. This my first thread in the forum and I hope you would enjoy reading this as much I did writing this.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_hero_image_edited.jpg

This is a long one, so I have broken this into different sections.

Index:
Prelude

The Contenders

Booking Experience

Selling Existing Car

Pre-sales and Delivery Experience

Honeymoon Period & Getting a Choice Number

Home Charger – My Own Fuel Dispenser

Connected Car Features & App Experience

Moment of Truth & Ownership Experience

Accessories & Mods

Last edited by thomahawk : 25th January 2024 at 19:21. Reason: Building index
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Old 23rd January 2024, 14:56   #2
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Prelude



For someone who loves cars, I started driving quite late in my life. Unlike most BHP-ians, I was afraid of taking a car out on the road. Having a BHP-ian for an elder brother meant I grew up hearing my father complaining about my brother driving the car 'enthusiastically'. The cars he drove during his college years raked in lot of repair bills. Mind you – my father used to drive the same way although he never met with any accidents with repair bills running into tens of thousands. I wanted to be better – which I meant I was never confident enough to take my parent’s car out as I was afraid of scraping it.

Once I started earning enough to afford ownership and running expenses of a car, my brother bought me an old rattling Opel Corsa Swing – assuring me that it is safe as a tank. Credit where it is due, the car did feel like a tank – for a newbie it was hard to maneuver as a tank and I could feel the rawness of the mechanicals of the car. The car didn't cost much, but I had sunk quite a lot of money to get it conditioned and replaced the old CD changer unit with a Pioneer unit with a USB-In – I thought the old unit was dead, but it was just a blown fuse. I decided to let the car go after it leaked on a rainy day – and I am from Kerala where it rains half the year. Looking back, I think I should have kept this car, since a station wagon is quite a rare sight in our roads.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-open_corsa_swing.jpg

The only place where I got a decent value for it was a Chevrolet showroom – and I became the owner of a new Beat Petrol LT (2014); the car had just been launched with a facelift. I had seen and driven only the previous model which had the ACC, read head rest etc. and I was in for a surprise when I did the PDI of the car. The facelift lost lot of things I loved about the car. I decided to get the car anyway since I was eager to start driving. It was an uneventful ownership, barring a manufacturing issue with dashboard and door plastic trim. They felt sticky as if they have melted in the sunny weather in Trivandrum. I had to make a scene at the service center to get it done, and the manufacturer was of no help. Once rumors started to pour in about GM planning to shut shop, I decided to part with it before the resale tanked.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-chevrolet_beat.jpg

As soon as I sold the Beat, I got myself a Hyundai Grand i10. By the time, I had also become a regular reader of the Team-BHP forum, thanks to all the goof-ups and issues I had with my previous cars. I had bought the facelifted Grand i10, Petrol Asta (2017). The car spoiled every other car for me. For the price, it felt more premium inside. It was loaded with features, and it had everything I needed – or so I thought. Soon the need for speed bug bit me and I felt the car lacking in performance. I always felt timid while overtaking in narrow roads in Kerala, as the car lacked outright punch. I had been driving my parent’s Brezza ZDI+ (2016) as well and I enjoyed driving it more. The car was perfect otherwise – the service experience was spotless, it was comfortable enough for city use, and the extremely refined engine made my drives peaceful. I had become a sedate driver since my wife and kids have motion sickness, and my car wasn’t suited for spirited driving.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-grandi10_delivery.jpg

Since my father was getting old, he had stopped taking his Brezza out for long drives and the car had not been running enough. My brother and I thought it is time for getting an automatic for him. We decided to sell my car and get an automatic. In exchange, I would get the Brezza and continue to drive it until it gets scrapped.

Last edited by thomahawk : 25th January 2024 at 19:51. Reason: Refining the post for removing title.
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Old 23rd January 2024, 15:02   #3
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The Contenders



We wanted a compact automatic around a budget of 10-15L. The body style did not matter. We considered:
  • Hyundai Venue/i20 DCT
  • Nissan Magnite/Renault Kiger CVT
  • Used Honda Jazz CVT
  • Used Ecosport AT
  • Maruti Suzuki XL6
  • MG Comet
  • Citroen eC3
  • TATA Nexon EV

The Venue and i20 did not feel like a great upgrade from i10. They felt too familiar – which at that point did not make me feel excited. I did a test drive of the ‘N-Lines’ but did not find the performance exhilarating or could feel the sporty exhaust note (with windows rolled up in chaotic city traffic it was hardly audible). I expected the transmission to be smooth and quick – and they were. I expected the car to be quick – and they were. I had lofty expectations and came back underwhelmed because it felt remarkably familiar and exactly as I expected them to be. The Team-BHP reviews were spot on, and it was as if I knew these cars.

Magnite was loaded to the brim with features – but all of it felt built to cost. The IRVM felt as cheap as the one in the Maruti 800 DX we had. The digital instrument cluster and 360-degree cameras felt cheap – they should have removed these and improved the cabin feel. The performance of the 1.0 was good, although it was not as refined as Hyundai’s. The car was comfortable, the price was good, and they had some great financing options if I ever needed it. I ruled this out because the brand gave me Chevrolet vibes.

We also looked at used samples from Spinny and OLX ads. Spinny cars were OK and having seen how Spinny runs their tests – I was OK with getting one from them. My brother found a Jazz CVT in Spinny and insisted I take a test drive. The car felt ‘used’ for a low mileage car. Also, the seats were low slung and I through my father would struggle with this. The performance and refinement were OK, but the rubber band effect was very much there when I floored the car.

For the heck of it, I also checked out an Ecosport which I found from OLX. I always loved the car and strongly considered it when we bought our Brezza. Although the guy who listed it said he is not a dealer, he seemed to be running a business on the side. He claimed the car to be his uncle’s. The car had several mods and some of the electronics were erratic. I decided to stop wasting my time and headed back. My brother found an Elantra AT from Spinny which seemed great, but we could not find any excuses to buy it – so dropped that too.

If Ford was still around, I would have bought an Ecosport AT with my eyes closed. Perhaps it is the fond memories I have with my father's Fusion (I like to believe the Ecosport is its spiritual successor). We also had great experience with a Zoomcar rental.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-ecosport.jpg

Since we were anyway checking out cars that did not fit the need, I decided to head to neighborhood Nexa dealer. Found the guys who sold me my Grand i10 working at Nexa now, had a chat with them and they happily showed me the XL6. The car seemed excellent value – if only I had the need for it. I found the second-row captain seats and even the last row good enough for me – and I am 6 feet tall with a heavy build. The car had all the creature comforts I was looking for and the performance was adequate. I tried convincing my wife about selling both Brezza and i10 to get XL6 Alpha AT. She put some sense into me, and I dropped the idea. We hardly travelled together with my parents and on the rare occasions we did, my brother had an Innova Crysta for the job. Moreover, we thought my father would not be comfortable taking this out.

Now that I reaffirmed myself that I need a compact automatic, I decided to test drive the smallest one I can find. The MG comet had just been launched and I decided to just check it out and use the excuse to check out the Astor and Gloster. There was hardly anyone in the showroom and when I saw the car from afar, I immediately wanted to turn back. I decided to check the car anyway since there wasn’t anyone else to catch me on a tiny car. To my surprise, the car looked all right up-close. It felt well put together and the doors were heavy, and the interiors were airy. I was excited and I quickly got into the back seat and to my surprise they were comfortable enough. The sales advisor offered a test drive for a short distance on a pre-planned route. I managed to get out of the sharp incline from the showroom without scraping the underbelly. The car could quickly pick up speed. Since this was the first time I drove an EV, I was mesmerised by the silent cabin. It felt so peaceful. The car had lot of body roll, so I did not try anything stupid and drove us back to the showroom. He showed me all the variants in their yard, and I was convinced that this is the car I want to buy.

Smitten by the EV experience, I quickly drove back home and took my wife to test drive the Citroen eC3. Again, I was greeted by an empty showroom, and I had to call the number pasted on the showroom glass to get someone to come in. It was as if the company already packed up and left. The sales advisor quickly offered a price sheet and went back to get a test drive vehicle ready. There was an ICE C3 along with eC3 on display. They looked good and we loved the proportions. But all of it came crashing down the moment we got in the back seat of eC3. I felt more comfortable in the Comet back seat and that is saying a lot. I blame the thin seats along with raised floor – the ICE version was much more comfortable. Just like the Magnite, the car had lot of cheap bits. Soon we got the test drive car, and I took for it a spin; I am not sure if it was the bad patch on which I drove, I felt my Grand i10 was more comfortable than this on the same road. Perhaps they had overinflated the tire. Since I was bowled over by Comet, I find tonnes of reasons to not consider eC3. We left the showroom, and I quickly gave call to MG sales advisor.

It was well after working hours, but the MG sales advisor waited for us since I called in advance, and he showed us the car again. My wife loved the car as much as I did. On our way back, we were thinking about how practical this car would be. It is an EV, so the whole point is to take it everywhere. Our two kids were little so they would be happy in the rear – but did not think our aged parents will feel the same way. The boot was non-existent, so we won’t be able to travel to our in-laws home as we usually carry things like fruits, vegetables, and other farm produce. Comet had a roof cargo box accessory, but I was not sure if I wanted the car to look so odd ball.

Now all that was left was Mahinda and Tata EV’s. Did not want to pick up a Mahindra since the brand did not leave an impression the last time we went to their showroom (for checking out the Marazzo for my brother). It seemed the sales staff were trained for selling their commercial vehicles only. That left me with Tata, and I had checked out the Tiago while I was considering a replacement for my Beat. The showroom experience was average at best at that time. Since the reviews of Tiago EV were largely positive, I had a good feeling about it.

Last edited by thomahawk : 25th January 2024 at 20:04.
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Old 23rd January 2024, 15:05   #4
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Booking Experience



Since there were lot of Tata dealers where I live, I decided to go to the nearest one. I took my family as well to check out the Tiago EV, to speed things up. The showroom was jam packed with cars ready for delivery and their only test drive vehicle was not available. The sales advisor got my number and promised a test-drive the next day.

I got a call the next day and the sales advisor came with a Tigor EV meant for fleet sales. Tiago was still out, and he told me he will arrange a test drive by evening, If I’m happy with the Tigor. He explained how the EV is different and how things work – regen and all. The car didn’t excite me much till I floored it. The instant acceleration blew me away. I told him I’m impressed and promised him a booking if he can get me the Tiago soon. He sticked to his word and got me the top end Tiago LUX variant for a test-drive. The white leatherette upholstery uplifted the entire cabin compared to the drab interiors of the fleet Tigor. The LUX variant had all the features I had in my Grand i10 – so there is at least some feature parity, I thought. The advisor asked me to drive in sport mode this time and I floored the car when I got the chance – and my jaw dropped. The car had me hooked to EV’s. There was no way I am buying an ICE car now (in that budget).

Now I wanted to get a feel of Nexon EV too. The advisor went back and got me a Nexon EV in an hour. I took the same route and switched to sport mode; The car was mental, and it gave me a scare. I did not think I could drive responsibly with this thing. I felt I could push the Tiago and still live for another day. Got the quotes for all models in their EV line-up and gave him a token amount without confirming a model.

I loved the Nexon, since it felt as a proper upgrade. But it was out of my budget. The base model did not have a reverse camera and the advisor told me electrical accessories can’t be retrofitted without voiding warranty. I thought the advisor was just bluffing and gave a call to their tollfree number. The online customer service agent asked me to call the nearest dealer. I looked at ownership reviews at Team-BHP and found this is what they have been telling all EV owners. So, no base model EV for me.

Now, I knew Punch EV and Nexon EV facelift were due soon. Punch EV would be the ideal package, the tall boy stance would make getting in and out easier for my parents. The car is modern compared to the now dated Tiago. I had no immediate need for a car, so waiting it out for Punch EV made sense. Since I had to confirm a model, I called up the sales advisor and told him to put it against top end Tiago EV. There was a waiting period of two months and no discounts; I said that is fine and I will wait, since I needed to make up my mind. I started watching ownership reviews in YouTube and reading the ownership experiences in Team-BHP. Since we had a Tata in the family before (Zest) and from what I have read in the forum, I knew any car from the brand will have niggles. After reading about the HV critical alerts and premature battery failure horror stories – I thought the more I spent on a Tata, the more I might regret it.

I seriously wanted to wait for facelifted Nexon EV and Punch EV, but I did not want to pay more and loose my peace of mind in case things go south. I thought I’ll use the money saved to setup a solar power plant at home. Also, since the car is basically a ‘nerfed’ budget hatch, body part replacements should be cheap. My father would not have to worry about repair bills. Coupled with lower running cost – the car will not be a burden for a pensioner. My wife and kids had motion sickness in UV's and tall boy hatchbacks - so perhaps the Punch wouldn't work for us - I thought.

I made up my mind and called the sales advisor again and confirmed that I am going for Tiago EV LR Lux, without fast charger and in Tropical Mist color. This color was unique to the EV version of Tiago and looked premium with the white interiors. They needed my Aadhaar and PAN for booking, and I shared low quality copy of them to avoid any funny business. They asked for a clear copy, and I said I will share them when they want to proceed with registration. Next, someone from accounting team at the dealer called me and said they could get the car faster, if I paid up upfront. I refused and told them if they can get the faster, get it to me faster and I will pay for it - the moment I see the car in person. I called up the sales advisor and protested about this. He apologized and told me to ignore it.

Last edited by thomahawk : 24th January 2024 at 19:42.
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Old 23rd January 2024, 15:18   #5
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Selling my Existing Car



Now that I had confirmed what I am buying – the two months wait had become unbearable. I was glued into videos and pictures of the car. I was not planning to take a loan, but I needed to sell my Grand i10, since I did not have covered space for three. I called up the Tata sales advisor and asked him if there were any exchange offers – and there was nothing. He said he can send an evaluator and I agreed – but the guy never arrived.

I listed the car in OLX, Team-BHP classifieds and contacted Spinny and Cars24 to get an estimate. Spinny did through check and later offered me a price that was around 50K lower than what they had shown in website. The car just had 38k on odometer, had proper service record, was non-accidental, had zero depreciation cover and was maintained well. Cars24 quoted 10k more than what Spinny offered, but much lower than what was shown in website. I said no to both. Used the Orange Book Value price estimator and priced the car.

OLX seemed to have gotten worse with teens and dealers lowballing. The guys who offered better prices never showed up – guess they were testing waters. I paid up to feature the listing twice, and after a month, I got one genuine buyer who was OK with the asking price. Since I had the car parked at my in-laws, I did not meet him, and it was my brother-in-law who showed the car and gave him a test-drive. He was happy with the condition of the car, and we agreed on a price. I looked at Parivahan to make sure that I could initiate the transfer on the spot. Aadhaar faceless verification method made things easy. To my surprise, I could not do anything on the portal since tax paid was not updated in Parivahan. I called up the buyer and apologized and asked for some time to fix this. I immediately went to local RTO and submitted a written request along with copy of the RC which clearly has tax paid details. I was told to expect an update in week – and it did get updated in a week. Called up the buyer to get things done and he apologized to me and told me he could not arrange for funds. He was a junior diving trainer in the navy, and I think he was being honest. From what I understood he was trying to get a loan from his PF which I do not think was happening. I told him that I will update him if I sell the car.

Tired, I also listed the car in Facebook marketplace. But the story wasn’t any different. I didn't like the Ad responses from strangers coming up as messages in messenger - but I guess that is how it works.

After a week, someone from local Cars24 office called and asked me what I was looking for. Tired with dealing with OLX, I told him what I think is respectable and he said he will revert. The next day he matched the price, and I had a deal. I asked for a week’s time, and he agreed to wait with a condition that the price he offered might change. I left a message to the navy chap that I sold the car.

Getting NCB before selling the car

Since my car had 50% NCB, I contacted the insurer (Acko) to claim the NCB certificate. I was afraid about Cars24 or their buyer raising a claim while the car was still under my name. It was all online since they did not have any physical offices. They asked me for proof of transfer, and I explained that I want to forfeit my NCB benefit claimed for the year (it was just over 1k) and get a certificate, so that I can transfer it to my new car. They sent me a payment request for over 6k. I asked about the extra charged (it was around 50% of premium I paid) and I just got a standard response that it is their policy. I had read the terms and conditions in the policy document and nowhere it mentioned about this. They had provided me zero depreciation cover for sixth year for a marginal discount and I believe now they wanted to charge the full amount. I had no luck with their reps and supervisor, and I told them I am complaining to IRDAI and insurance ombudsman. Now, before I could do that, I had to escalate this to their L1 and L2. L1 was not helpful and gave me the same story with their policy. Couple of strongly worded emails to L2 got me what I wanted. I got my certificate and new policy document emailed.

Cars24 - Post Sales Experience

I handed over the car to Cars24 after I got my new car. They transferred the amount to may account, and their staff got me sign several forms (They had a handy booklet with all sorts of forms including NOC for each car they buy – must sign all of them). Their staff then drove off the car and I took a video of the parting shot. The car is still in my name to date and every time I contacted their customer care, they tell me they have a buyer, and they are initiating the transfer. The associate who was in touch with be before, ghosted me and there was no response to any of my message. I guess there was no reason for him to get involved now – not part of his job. I checked for legalities of Cars24’s modus operandi, as there was a ruling that car ownership should be with the dealer for the interim. Their website said they are working on a license and that was it. They do promise legal and financial support on any eventualities till transfer is done, but that does not mean you are off the hook.

Thanks to 'myHyundai app', I found that Cars24 had taken the car for accidental repairs to a Hyundai workshop. That made me nervous and I checked with the customer rep who confirmed that the car met with an accident and they got it repaired. I could see the bill was just under 3K - and not sure if they claimed insurance. Regardless, I believe getting the NCB prior was a good move.

Last week their call center executive called me asking for an OTP (guess the countless forms they had me sign doesn't mean they can do things without my help). They initiated the transfer and I could check the owner details in Parivahan. Hopefully I can get this over with before my insurance is due for renewal.
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Old 23rd January 2024, 15:27   #6
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Pre-Sales Experience



I was getting impatient and there was just two weeks left for the two months waiting period the dealer quoted. The sales advisor was honest and told me they do not have a car yet. He said he was confident that he could get me the car before the regional festive holidays. I was getting frustrated but decided to stick to the sales advisor and dealer since he seemed to be honest.

Another week passed and that is when my wife told me about a contact at a newer Tata dealer. It was my brother in-law’s buddy from collage. He apparently joined the dealership a week back, to score some discounts for Crysta for his uncle. The dealer was supposedly from the same network that managed Toyota and they put him in the Tata dealership. I called him up and asked him about waiting period etc. I didn't want to switch my bookings - it was just a casual chat. I knew a sales manager (SM) at the dealer network; his team had sold me my Grand i10 (the dealer had shut shop during COVID and the staff moved on to different showrooms). When I mentioned about the SM, he said that guy is his SM. Soon I got a call from the SM and we had a chat and I told him about my situation. The next day, he called me up and told me he can get me a car in a week as they have one in transit. I paid a small token via Google Pay.

I called up my first sales advisor and told him about this. He said he understand and asked me to give them a chance and offered some discounts. I told him whoever gets me the car first – will get my money and they have had a head start. Another week passed, and I called up both and it now seemed that both cars were in transit. I was inclined to get the car from my first advisor since he did all the pre-sale work – if they had the car in yard around the same time.

But it was the latter who got the car first. I went down to check the car and they had the car washed and brought into their showroom. I decided not to do a proper PDI as per Team-BHP checklist – I was afraid I will never buy a Tata if I did a thorough check. I checked for the common issues in Tiago EV and the car had all of it. Wonky fuel filler flap (yes – but I knew how to fix it), hard to close front door (yes – asked them to do something about it). I decided not to check the car in detail as it will ruin the car for me. This was a grave mistake and I realized this later.

The car was manufactured in the previous month, although I was told the car is fresh from factory. The car did not seem to have any glaring issues.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_pdi.jpg

There were some paint chips on the rear bumper. Checked out some other Tiago's in the showroom and they had similar marks. Guess this a QC problem.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_pdi_marks.jpg

Since the SM already had my quote from the first dealer – he gave me matching quote to make remaining payment. I told him about the discounts offered by first dealer, and he went back and came with some more discounts thrown in. I called up my first sales advisor and told him that I got the car. He said OK and asked me if I could recommend him to anyone who wants to buy one and I said – yes. If anyone wants to buy a Tata EV from Kochi – DM me and I can share his contacts.

I had kept NCB off the table till I had the final quote. I told the dealer’s insurance desk that I have an NCB certificate. Now, these conversations were through my brother in-law’s friend. They started to make things difficult and asked me for a physical copy of NCB certificate with a seal. I reached out to Acko and their rep said they will take a laser print and courier it to me – and that nobody is going to put a seal or sign on it. Since they did not have a physical office – I did not have place to get a seal anyway. We took a colour print and gave that to the insurance desk. Now, they wanted to see the RC of the car and original policy. I shared the RC, and policy with and without NCB factored in. Finally, I got the NCB applied on insurance.

I transferred the amount and sealed the deal. The paperwork was simple since everything was done through Aadhaar verification and my address was same as in my Aadhaar. For TCS (since the car cost more than 10L), they need the owner’s PAN. The backend team needed some OTP’s for registration and that was it. No visits to the local RTO office.

Delivery Experience



The car was to be delivered on a Saturday evening – just before Onam. I had opted for choice number and the car was to be delivered with a 6 month’s temporary registration. I took my father with me on our Grand i10 to the showroom, before the delivery time to get a floor mat selected. Plan was to go to my in-laws, pick up my wife and kids and have my brother-in-law drive my old car to his place. The freebie was a universal mat, so had to get that swapped with a better one by paying the difference. When we came back to where the car was parked, one of the front tires were flat. I never had a puncture before. All sort of things started to go through my head – I like to believe that I’m not superstitious. I had mentioned to my father that Tiago does not have a spare as we were driving – and that it will not be a problem because I never had a puncture in any of my cars. Is my car now mad at me? I was after all getting her replaced - I got Herbie vibes. I cursed the decision to park on a murky spot, filled the tire with my inflator and drove to a shop nearby to get it repaired.

We had lunch from my in-law's and came to the showroom on time for delivery. Since mine was the only car being delivered the showroom was free. My kids played around while the staff did the paperwork. They had put up a photo wall – something my brother in-law and his friend setup. The car was under wraps now. After a small cake cutting ceremony, we took the wraps off, and my father accepted the keys from the showroom manager. We also got a gift hamper with some snacks. There was a scratch and win coupon as well - which my father tried before I could. We won a crockery set.

Our Tiago had two Punch ICE cars parked on either side - guarding our cute little EV:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_delivery.jpg

I did the honors of squeezing the lemon by rolling over it (I wonder what is the point since the staff has anyway taken the car in and out several times already). Since the designated sales advisor was new, someone else from their staff did the walk through. He asked me if I know how to drive it and I said I got a test drive from another dealer. He took that as a yes for everything and went on his way. Since the first sales advisor did a terrific job – I knew what I had to know.

I noticed that the toggle button to unfold the mirrors were finicky. I was told that is how it is. Perhaps a sign of things to come. Looking around, I found the rubber dash mats I ordered were put all over the place. The accessory installer was brought in and he told me the part is common to Tiago and Tigor and hence there were some extra parts and some didn't fit. He had pasted the parts that didn't fit in dashboard where he thought "it looked nice". We played a game of jigsaw puzzle for some time and found we could paste it somewhere else where I thought "it didn't look ugly". He had soiled the white upholstery with some grease, so we had them clean it up before we drove the car out of the showroom.

Last edited by thomahawk : 25th January 2024 at 20:51.
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Old 23rd January 2024, 15:53   #7
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Honeymoon Period



OK, a car that runs on electricity isn't a new thing. After all, the 'the oldest Indian-made automobile' is an electric car.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-swan_car.jpg
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The Tiago EV was enticing because it could very well be the first mass market EV in India. The test drive had made me a believer. Since I had done my homework, I got used to driving the EV in no time. Out of all the variants - think the Tiago EV Lux variant in Tropical Mist color looks the best. The metallic luster of the paint, the black roof and the premium upholstery makes it look chic. It doesn't look futuristic enough for an EV though.

The tri-arrow air dam is a nice touch:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_front_edited.jpg

Not a fan of what they did with the rear. The camera and sensor should have been integrated better:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_rear_edited.jpg

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_front_quarter_edited.jpg

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_rear_quarter.jpg

I love this bit of the car - looks sporty:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_integrated_spoiler.jpg

The 50 lakh badge of honor is a nice touch:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tata_50th_badge.jpg

This is no Hyundai, but I can live with it:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_interior.jpg

Fly in the Ointment

The next day, while trying to install the dashcam the unit was not powering on. I tried the second socket near the hand break lever and that worked. I thought never mind, it’s a Tata after all. I reached out for the cabin light to check for anything on the socket and noticed that there is a dead cricket inside the light dome.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_dead_cricket.jpg

I didn’t know what to think of it – I felt sorry for the sad state of things at our home-grown manufacturer. Since I found issues that were not yet reported, I decided to check for more. I found that the left side horn pad didn’t work properly – one must really press on a particular point to make it work. There wasn’t any water spray coming off the windshield washer – I popped open the hood and the reservoir was empty. Filled it in with washer fluid I and checked for leaks – there wasn’t any. At last, some relief. I found some loose nuts in the boot and some broken plastic rivets – think they must have fallen off from the assembly line (couldn't find any place missing these).

Part of the Tiago now lives in my little one's trike:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_lost_part.jpg

Found one of the doors had a torn rubber beading. The roof liner had a minor imperfection too – but it didn’t bother me much. I was relieved that these were all I could find.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_rubber_beeding.jpg

Couple of days later, the driver side mirror started to work erratically - it didn’t unfold completely and seemed to be getting stuck at certain points (have replaced both my units now). I called up the SM and complained about the poor PDI done at dealership. He promised to have all these ironed out when I came into dealership next. I got most of these fixed when I went to the dealer's service center to get the HSRP plate fixed. The service center didn't open a job card to fix these (I should have insisted that they open one, so that I have proof that the car had far too many QC issues). The mirror assembly was replaced and others were take care of. While fiddling with the horn pad they made some deep marks on the leather wrap of the steering wheel. I wish they didn't use a screw driver for prying it open - it was hard to unsee it every time I took the car out for a month or so.

Since I was complaining about service and QC issues, the Sales Manager offered to call up the service center which was closer to my parent's home. He said that he will make sure ask them to give some preferential service if anything else cropped up. That is when I found out that the dealer used to own the Chevrolet showroom and service center from where I got my Beat and had it serviced. The Toyota connection was just a marketing ploy - Yes, they are related but the owners are different people all together. Regardless, they are on an investing spree (the group owns lot of dealerships now) and it is rumored that they are opening a giant showroom and service center which would become Asia's largest. I hope Tata improves things from their end too.

Getting a Choice Number



I had my choice number allotted the week after the car was delivered. The car now had my father’s first car’s (a Maruti 800 SB308) number – or at least the last 4 digits of it. The process is simple, once the dealer pays the road tax and submit application for temporary registration – you can opt for a number from the open series in ‘Parivahan-Fancy’ portal. The details about the open series, current auction timeline and rates are listed on the website. If there are multiple bookings against a number, it goes to auction, and one can bid; the number goes to the highest bidder and the party who yields, gets a refund. You have 6 months to get a number before you attract any sort of penalty.

If there is no auction, you get the car number allotted and letter is generated. You can let the dealer know and they will source the HSRP plate and stickers (they can see the car's they are responsible for from their end). Once the plate and sticker is ready, visit the dealer and they install it, takes some snaps and uploads it to Parivahan and you are done. The RC would be then be printed and sent to your address. This has now become very convenient for the owner, since one is spared from visiting their regional RTO themselves.

Last edited by thomahawk : 26th January 2024 at 01:45.
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Old 23rd January 2024, 15:58   #8
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Home Charger – My Own Fuel Dispenser



The car was delivered with the charging box in the boot. I was told Tata power team would facilitate home installation in 3 working days. During the two months I waited for the car, I had applied for a 3 Phase connection (anything more than 5kW load requirement needs a 3-phase connection as per my state’s electricity board). BHP-ian sushanthys thread is an excellent reference to get this done.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sushanthys View Post
Note: This is partly a technical post with lot of electric jargon. I have tried to keep it as simple and interesting as possible.
Also, setup a 4kW on-grid solar roof top power plant with MNRE subsidy. As I changed the wiring - to support additional load, I got the single-phase DB moved to the porch with a separate wiring from the main fuse. I had also added a 16A socket to charge an EV. Damage to the pocket was around 2.5L.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-solar_plant.jpg

Since I already had provision done, I was not in a hurry to get the Tata power team do their job. Since nobody from Tata power seems to be bothered, I called the dealer and told them nobody had got in touch with me. Soon, I got a call from someone, and he said he will come over if its urgent. Since it was the festival holidays, I told him to take the time. Finally, it took them two weeks to come over and install the box. This was outsourced and they guy had taken the contract. They extended the connection from the power plug to an MCB and wired the charger to it. Took them about 30 minutes and they took some photos, and they reeled the remaining wire. The first 15 meters is free, and anything longer is to be paid by the customer. The customer doesn’t get what is left of 15 meters if their connection didn’t need it. The box isn’t weatherproof and if one needs to keep the box in an open area – they can arrange for a weatherproof box as a paid extra. I was told it is useless since the car can’t be in rain while being charged. I wonder why some DC chargers are not in a shed if that is true.

The Legrand box comes with lock and key; there is also a cutout for the cable so that you can lock the box while you charge. Since the portable charger is quite expensive to replace, ability to lock it is a nice touch.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-home_charger.jpg

If your home has old or poor earthing, the portable charger wouldn’t charge and will just blink red. The portable charger wouldn’t work over a connection with faulty earthing. So take this into account when you plan your halt for the night after a long drive. There is a hack with a wire and an iron rode - but try that at your risk - it is not recommended (or safe?).

During installation, the next customer in their list had called and while they were talking, I overheard that the owner just wants a slow charger. Once they were done talking, I asked about why someone would not use a faster charger and he mentioned that the customer had an EV Max which comes with an AC fast charger, and he doesn’t have a 3-phase connection. When I asked can’t they program the fast charger to work as a regular charger (I had read about this in MG forum) – he said he doesn’t know about that. I got the number of the EV Max owner, and we had a chat. I told him about the process to get a 3 Phase connection but said he didn’t want to change anything. He offered his charger, but he wanted what it would cost from the dealer. Since I didn’t want the hassle with any warranty claims, I refused (I got mixed inputs about the fast charger warranty – but I think it is just for 1 year).

Since I wanted charging provision at my in-laws too, I asked about the charges, and he told me 1k in labour plus material cost. He didn’t know from where to source the Legrand charging box though – and suggested just installing the regular plug point. Since I didn’t want to skimp on protection, I enquired about the charging box at the dealer, and they had no clue. Went to an electrical supplies store and they didn’t have much idea about it. They said they will find out if they can source it from Legrand. They sourced it in couple of weeks and told me it will cost around 6.5k. Much more than the MRP printed on the box that came with the car. Seems these have different part numbers. If you want to buy one from Tata, get in touch with service and not the sales team. I decided to consider this later. After all, the box is nothing but a glorified DB with an RCCBO and an integrated socket.

The one available through retail and the bundled unit had different model numbers and MRP's:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-electric_chargers.jpg

Since my home wiring supported it, I decided to check the price of fast AC chargers. I think any fast charger would work just fine. I called the MG dealer since I was curious to know how much their charger would cost – they shared the service center number, and I got in touch. They said they will get back since they haven’t sold one yet. Got a call couple of hours later and they shared the price. About 10k cheaper that Tata’s. Didn’t think I would have much use for the faster charger since I will be doing overnight charging anyway. Tata doesn’t recommend opportunity charging (topping it up whenever one likes and not charging up to 100%). If one were to charge the car to 100% using the AC fast charger – that still takes time. So decided to keep this on hold. But the MG service team did leave a good impression; they took a note of all my questions and reverted with answers for all of them, in a matter of few hours. I wasn't a customer (I had told them I'm just planning to buy a used EV) and I didn't have to follow up. Good job, MG.

Last edited by thomahawk : 25th January 2024 at 21:47.
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Old 23rd January 2024, 16:07   #9
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Connected Car Features and App Experience



The connected car features, free for first year isn’t activated till the dealer completes the KYC process. Again, it just needs Aadhaar. For me, it took couple of weeks after delivery since the backend team ‘forgot’ about it. After some follow-ups it was finally activated.

I like the feature spread. Geofencing, tracking, usage statistics, pre-cool, remote unlock, break-in alerts, valet function – all good. The valet function lets you pick the distance (radius) the valet can take the car. So, nobody is running away with your car – that is unless they know how to disconnect the connected car module. I wonder if this will work in a basement parking with poor signal reception.

The app feels outdated and has some very annoying bits. It used to ask for OTP every time I opened the app (removed now) – as if I am connecting to RBI’s cash truck. There is the annoying loading animation and even when there is sufficient signal on the car – it won’t connect to the car. After a minute or so, it will connect to the car and then there is the delay. Every time you initiate an operation (say you want to honk the car to find it), it takes around a minute. The app sometimes doesn't sync the data properly and shows outlandish efficiency figures.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-z_connect_tiago_ev.jpg

There are apps for smart watches too (I used the wear OS app). It lets you access the controls – like the mobile app, and view a short version of vehicle status. It shows the picture of a Nexon in place of a Tiago. I don’t use it much, since I did not expect the experience to be any better than the mobile app.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-watch_app.jpg

There is also a 'EV TMSC' app for booking service, checking your service history etc. It is clearly an inferior product compared to Maruti's and Hyundai's offering. You have to put your own reminders to remind when your next service is due . The app is stuck in its splash screen for the last couple of weeks for me - since I have seen other users complaining about it in play store, it is not just for me. The Tata group clearly has the capability - but it seems they lack the will.

Last edited by thomahawk : 25th January 2024 at 22:36.
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Old 23rd January 2024, 16:55   #10
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Moment of Truth



Once I sorted everything and was comfortable with the car, I took my father for a drive and told him it’s time for him to switch cars. We drove to his cousin’s home, and he enjoyed the convenience – it was an empty road so he didn't have to worry about anything else. He needed some time to rest his left leg (I found it hard for couple of days as well – since I never drove an automatic regularly before). On our way back we took a busy route and just before a speed breaker, he just slammed the brake, and the car came to a screeching stop. I asked him to go easy and thought he is just getting used to the car. Luckily there was nobody tailing us.

We resumed. It was getting dark, and my father had stopped driving at night. He said let’s switch now, and instead of slowing the car, again slammed the brake. There was an Altroz just behind us and the driver swerved to avoid a crash. He honked for a minute and when he saw my father, he decided to let it go and drove off. I asked my father why he slammed the brake again, he said he can’t modulate the brake pedal properly. He was diabetic and had weak sensation on his toes and foot. With the manual, he said he could manage it using the clutch pedal. Once we got home, he said he doesn't want to get into an accident and he will continue to use the old car. He said he anyway use a car only when he couldn't manage it without it. That was the last time he took the Tiago on a busy road.

I never had him test drive any of the cars; I broke an important rule. It was a very stupid mistake. This meant, the Brezza was no longer at my disposal, and he would continue to limit his runs. I don’t have the daily running to justify an EV, nor did I want the Tiago for my use. I broke the news to my wife and heard a mouthful. I sold a perfectly good car which served our needs well and brought something which I keep cribbing about.

Ownership Experience



So, I became the primary user of both the Tiago EV and the Brezza. Both cars are meant to be a sensible buy for someone who clocks lot of miles. I decided to make peace with the blunder I made and make the best out of the ‘arranged’ ownership.

The Drive

I enjoy my solo trips in the car and I'm getting around 200KM+ range. It sated my need for speed as I can easily overtake anything on the narrow, twisty roads in Kerala. Using sports mode feels like applying a cheat code on the regular Tiago – nobody expects it. I managed to improve my efficiency and the Wh/km reading is usually between 85-100.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_mid.jpg

I keep the regen to 1 since anything more is nauseating for my wife. I didn’t get what she was saying till I was in the backseat once and she maxed out the regen. The brisk acceleration and then quick deceleration with regen felt terrible in the backseat. Also, the car doesn't mask speed that well; you would either appreciate it (get the thrill without going in triple digit speeds) or hate it (80km/h is terrifying for my kids in Tiago EV; I could easily cruise at those speeds without them complaining in our Grand i10). Coming from the Grand i10, I found the suspension stiff; I have more confidence in taking on the twisty roads at speed - but my wife complains a lot on bad patches. The brakes takes some getting used to, as the bite is different based on how much charge you have left. At 100% the regen is off and the brakes would suddenly feel inadequate. Once you drop below 95% regen kicks-in and they feel adequate. The care sometimes lunge by itself when you have slowed down for navigating a pothole and regen has kicked-in (this will get you by surprise - but others have documented this so I guess it is a known 'issue'). The hill hold 'assist' helps but the car moves back by few inches - you'll have to use hand brake if you are ever stuck in bumper to bumper traffic in a slope (as seen in lot of hill stations recently).

This is a great car for solo trips - I sometimes take the car out just to play with it as if I'm a kid with a ride-on toy. Not having to pay any fuel bill feels like pure bliss. The small solar plant at home takes care of my charging expenses.

Some Worries

Range anxiety is still very much there, and I think one should look at half the shown DTE and think of that as the range (since you would ideally want to go somewhere and come back home without DC charging). That makes Tiago LR a 100km car (around 2km for every 1% drop in battery). Doesn’t look good when you look like that – but that is the truth. Also the range depends on the terrain and weather - so one needs to do a lot of planning. For me the DTE shown in car was always somewhat accurate - so didn't have to rely on the Wh/km. The car will restrict performance if the battery goes below 25% (you will be restricted to D mode - but the dial will continue to indicate that you are in sport mode if you went below 25% while on sport). Once the battery drops below 10%, the car enters limp mode and the entire dynamics of the car will change. Speed (restricted to 55) and acceleration becomes poor and you might struggle on inclines. I wonder what happens if I ever have to stop on a steep incline while on limp mode - I sometimes have to use sports mode to get the car to move from a standstill on a sharp incline. Perhaps I have to ask the passengers to get out. Taking all these into account - I wonder this car is ideal for senior citizens; there are far too many variables to consider.

The battery pack in the boot seems well protected, I pray I would never have to test it:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_battery_pack.jpg

Since I'm not sure if a repair is possible, I worry about an impact to the front or rear damaging critical components of the car. An expensive replacement is what one might have to pay for. Up-to-date insurance is a must.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_heart.jpg

Since the car doesn't have a spare tire and I'm scared if the random HV error would decide to greet me, I usually don't pick the car for long trips with family. The car is comfortable for shorter trips, but I don't think spirited driving on an EV with aggressive regen enabled will be kind to fellow passengers.

The Cabin

The front seats are one size small for me, but I'm on the heavier side and 6'. They are height adjustable, but on longer trips I have to keep fiddling with the position for better comfort. Wish the steering was telescopic. I find the rear seats adequate but I miss the head rests.

I didn’t account for my little kids while opting for the Lux variant with white upholstery. It needs regular cleaning, but being leatherette, that is easy. If you have family members who are claustrophobic, they won't complain :
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_airy_cabin.jpg

The roof liner feels premium and the handles are spring loaded:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_liner_light_dome.jpg

There are no immediately visible screws:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_screw_caps.jpg

Getting in is easy, thanks to wide opening doors:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_rear_ingress.jpg

Storage Space

The front door pockets are tiny and car only hold tiny bottles or small umbrellas. The rear pockets are wider but still a bit smaller than what I would have liked:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_front_door_storage.jpg

The cooled glove box has ample storage space and gets a top compartment for the owners booklet.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_glove_box.jpg

With Fast-Tag now being the norm, I use the one in windshield for parking tickets and the one in sun visor for:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_ticket_holder.jpg

There are lot of places to keep your stuff, but sometimes I miss an armrest.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_center_console.jpg

There are lot of storage hooks. In the front:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_front_hooks.jpg

And the boot has two of these:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_boot_storage_hooks.jpg

This space is meant for the warning triangle, but you can fit the portable charger here if you want (but you risk loosing it, incase of a collision):
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_charger_storage.jpg

The front seats doesn't get any back pockets - they should have provided them.

In Car Entertainment

The ICE systems user interface is dated:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_ice.jpg

Although the ICE system is dated, the 8 speaker (that is including the 4 tweeters) setup sounds good. At higher volumes, the door panels vibrate a bit too much and ruins the experience. Might have to dampen them. Since the ICE system's LCD doubles up the ACC display - I don't think this can be upgraded to something better. I had applied a plastic screen protector since the pre-applied one one had lot of bubbles in it. I'm not sure if the poor touch response is because of the protector - but it has an annoying lag. Call quality is good, but dialing directly through the ICE system drives me mad because of the lag and falls touch activations. The FM radio suffers from poor reception and the constant hissing is very annoying (my Grand i10 seemed to filter these out).

I wish it had a more modern USB C port as well; you are stuck with a single USB A port. There are two 12V sockets in the cabin, one in the dash and the other near the parking brake lever.

Missing Reverse Sensors

The lack of reverse sensor bothered me a lot as I have little kids. The Tiago EV's reverse camera isn't recessed, so during rains the camera would easily get covered with spots and murk - making it useless. Since dealer said installing accessories was not possible – I decided to live with it. That is when I saw the post in Team-BHP that the Tiago now came with a reverse sensor. My car probably was the last batch that did not come with one. When I went to the service center for my first check-up (2k KM), I discussed this is service manager and he promised that he will check with Tata on possibility. I was willing to pay for the parts including harness, if required. After following up couple of times, I got a hard NO as an answer.

Dynamic guidelines are a nice touch, but I miss the sensors.
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-reverse_guidelines.jpg

Visible Cost Cutting:

The car has a single LED cabin light and gets nothing in the boot. There is a cut out for it but I think Tata had removed it from Tiago at some point to save some pennies. Since tampering with electricals will void electrical warranty - you can't do nothing about these things.

They should have added a plastic panel here, this looks cheap:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_fuel_lid_charging_socket.jpg

The carpet in the boot looks and feels cheap:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_boot_carpet.jpg

Tiago when it was launched had a sill protector. The premium EV variant (and current Tiago) gets nothing:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_bumper_exposed_metal.jpg

These should have been organized/covered better:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_dashboard_cables.jpg

The rear parcel tray doesn't life up with the boot door - because somebody wanted to save few rupees on the rope. Tata should have undone lot of these cost cutting stuff on the EV version - at least on the top versions. I would have appreciated a car in its best form when I'm ponying up for the top model.

They should have swapped this for a shark fin antenna; And since this is at the front - you can't upgrade it either (without making it look odd):
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-antenna.jpg

The plastics are budget grade and there are fit and finish issues as well:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_misalignments.jpg

The piano black finish on the dashboard gets scratches easily - wonder if self healing PPF would work on these:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_piano_black_plastics.jpg

I am finding plenty of use for my 3m automotive tape:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_poor_fit_boot.jpg

This looks barebone, Tata should have added a cover:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_no_insulation_edited.jpg

Approved Electronics Accessories

When the facelifted Nexon launched, I went to the dealership from where I got the car delivered. A friend was interested in the Nexon, so I thought will check it out for him. While I was there, I noticed that a Tiago EV was getting a reverse camera retrofitted.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_camera_installation.jpg

I got hold of my brother-in-law’s buddy and he brought the accessory guy to talk about this. It seems Tata now have released several ‘approved’ accessories, but a reverse sensor is not in that list. All models now had it, so it was obvious. They brought the accessory technician next, and I asked him about doing something. He said I would have better luck with service technicians – but I told him they won’t do it. He discouraged me and told me not to do anything with electricals – since I might have a problem with warranty claims. He said the control unit cost about a lakh and that is connected to 12v system, and this is risky. That reminded me of extending the warranty – and got it extended to 5 years for around 26k.

Charging Infra

The charging infra in Kerala is quite good. There are lot of pole mounted AC slow chargers from the state’s electricity board for emergency use. I have only tried Zeon and Tata DC charging stations – and both were good experiences. Lot of the ANERT ones are useless – so one must always check the status beforehand. It seems awareness about charging etiquette is poor; I have seen a Nexon EV plugged-in the whole day, with only one another charger around. I believe one can always use the emergency breaker to release the gun if the owner is nowhere in sight and you have an emergency (but that is inviting trouble). Before setting out on a long trip on the EV, I spot the DC EV charging station enroute with CCS2 support and pick a spot to take a break and charge the car. Google maps or Plugshare helps in planning this. Once I pick a spot (ideally with multiple chargers that are in working condition - one can check in the charging companies’ app), I can either reserve a spot in the respective companies’ app or look for current availability of the charger just before I arrive at the location. Some vendors provide covered parking (this is preferable) and there are usually some amenities in the vicinity, if not at the location (like toilets, supermarkets, cafe etc.). The charging is initiated through the app (some companies have RF cards you can purchase through their app for a faster transaction) and you can decide on how long you want to charge. The charging rates are also different based on vendors (it is listed in their apps), and reservations sometimes cost a tiny extra. Once the car is charging you can lock the car and do your business – but please do plan to come back once your session is over and not trouble a fellow EV user. The car’s AC and ICE will work while charging, so you can relax in the car itself - if you prefer it. If there are multiple chargers, I pick the slower one and leave the 50KW chargers to owners whose EV can make the best of it – I recommend fellow Tata’s EV owners to do the same.

Air Conditioning: Fan & Sensor Replaced

I clocked few thousand kilometers, and on a short trip to market with my wife and kids on two, they complained about it being too hot. I fiddled with the ACC knobs, and it didn’t seem to cool the cabin. The battery was hovering above 20%, so I thought perhaps it is the energy saving kicking in. Came back home, juiced it up to 100% and then turned on the AC again. It felt cold for a second then it was just blowing air. There was no cooling – I popped open the hood and the fan wasn’t working. I had taken the day off anyway since it was my birthday. Decided to drive to the service centre to check if it was some blown fuse or something.

After waiting an hour at the reception (didn’t use the lounge as it was too cold), the service advisor told me the sensor and fan requires a replacement – it would take a week for them to source the part and they will keep the car. I asked if they would give me a loaner and the said, No. I asked if I could keep the car since it is just going to sit there and they told me yes, but do not take it on long trips as the motor relies on AC for cooling. I didn’t think that is right but was in no mood to debate so took the car and left. Parked the car safely and started doubting my decision to go with Tata. At the end of the week, I called the service advisor again and I was told the part is on back order and it will take another week. I called up the regional office to escalate this, since I had far too many issues on a brand-new car. Someone picked up the phone only to tell me that someone else should attend the call, so call later. I called later, and this time I was told someone will call back – but nobody did.

I realized that I’m left at the dealer’s mercy. I scoured their website for contacts to escalate my issue. Only the toll free and email ID was listed – I knew both will just be directed to the dealer. Finally found some names on the website and wrote an email explaining my situation with a new car. After sending the email, I realized that these were regional contacts for commercial vehicles. I quickly replied to them with an apology and asked if they could redirect this to the correct contacts. The two gentlemen responded in couple of hours (it was later in the day) and forwarded my concern to their counterparts at passenger vehicles – and looped me in. Maybe I should have bought an Ace EV instead. My email was forwarded to the dealer and regional office asking them to act. The next day I got a call from the dealer again saying that they are working on it – the dealer then responded to the email citing the same. I guess my issue is probably trivial to them and there might be lot of owners stuck with dead cars – my car at least is alive.

Couple of days later, on enquiring I was told the part would arrive the next day. I was relieved. I called up the service advisor and I was told he mean by evening, so come the day after. I took an appointment and got the part changed. I pointed out some minor scratches and decided to not make fuss about it – I was just tired.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_replaced_part.jpg

Charging – Error Code

Clocked hundreds of kilometers more and I kept wondering if ended up with a lemon. Decided to try draining the battery under 10% so that the car goes to limp mode. Maybe the dreaded HV error would come and that will be the end of it. Just drove around in sport mode till the battery dropped to under 10%. The characteristics of the car change dramatically as it drops below 20% and 10%. Limp mode is exactly what the name says. I also noticed that the dial continues to indicate sports mode unless once switches to drive mode once. Once it is in drive mode, it will reject mode change and indicate that.

Mission accomplished, I put the car on charge. I was shocked when the car refused to charge. I could hear the HV engaging, and the fan would turn on and then go off - this cycle would keep repeating. I tried the charging ritual again, but it didn't help. I called up the support line hoping to get technical assistance. The call center executive asked me if I have some charge left and whether the car is parked at home. I said yes, and they asked me to visit the nearest TASS. I told them it is a Sunday and their service center won't open. Then they gave me the nearest TASS manager’s number and asked me to seek help from them. I dialed the number, and nobody responded. I tried the diagnostics function in Z-Connect and it reported everything is great.

I gave up trying to get help and decided to try charging again and keep it plugged in to see what happens after few minutes. After few minutes, the fan turned on and the car started to charge. I assumed it has to do with the recent fan and sensor replacement. Had taken a video of this and sent that to my service advisor – but he did not bother to check. I had a family function near the service station, so dropped my family and took the car to the service station. They took the car and after an hour, returned it and told me that they had cleared a flag/error code. They advised me to not drop the car below 20% again. I was dumbfounded but decided to stick to their advice till next service. The issue cropped up again and I have decided to live with it till the next service.

Summary



I sometimes think about selling both my cars and upgrading to an ZS EV. I don’t think I need it, but I don’t think I will enjoy an ICE car now. I love the EV part of the car, but Tata and rest of Tiago - not so much.

Likes:
  • The car is a lot of fun in twisty, narrow roads in Kerala. Instant torque is addictive. Overtaking is quick and easy.
  • Have all must have modern features (ACC, push button start, auto wipers, Android Auto and CarPlay).
  • Connected car features are nice.
  • White leatherette interior and dual tone finish makes the dated car look premium.
  • Supports AC and DC fast charging. The small battery fills up sooner over a standard plug point.
  • Cheap to own and run. Not having to pay for fuel feels great.
  • Can run A/C and idle the car without a worry.
  • Mostly silent (barring creaks and random parts vibrating).
  • Smooth and effortless drive.

Dislikes:
  • For an EV, the car does not feel modern.
  • It is a Tata – Niggles, QC issues, Poor grievances support.
  • It is a Tiago – The EV is based on an old, dated, cheap hatch. Probably at the end of its lifecycle.
  • No spare wheel. If you keep one in boot along with charger – there is not much boot space left. The sealant costs around 799 - and you have to get the puncture repaired anyway.
  • No rear head rest – you need one with the brisk acceleration.
  • There is no dedicated park mode. Unless one has applied hand brake properly the car will start to roll. You will be searching for stones if parked on inclines.
  • Random squeaks and rattles – since the car is silent otherwise, these irks me a lot. Fixing these will probably require begging at service center.
  • No reverse sensor in top models (available now) – only an average camera.
  • Poor FM reception. The ICE unit doesn't filter out the hizz - making the experience very annoying.
  • Dated Infotainment unit – my 5-year-old Grand i10’s unit is far better.
  • Apps (EV TMSC and Z-connect) needs a makeover.
  • Safety – only 2 airbags. Crash test results are of the ICE variant. Worried about rear impact since there is a battery in the boot.

Last edited by thomahawk : 26th January 2024 at 00:59. Reason: Improving clarity
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Old 23rd January 2024, 16:58   #11
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Accessories



7D Mats (Tata)
Costs about 6k. Felt as good as Nomad mats but with more coverage. My Nomad mats on Grand i10 had worn off where my heel would rest. This has a PVC sheet there – so might last longer.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-accessory_7d_mat-copy.jpg

Dash Mats (Tata)
Wanted to avoid rattles on otherwise silent cabin. Got these ill-fitting rubber mats which are common for Tiago and Tigor. Most pieces did not fit, and the installer used the pieces that didn’t fit as decorative pieces in the dash. Took those out. Would have avoided if they had not pasted it on the car. The double side tape these have are pathetic. Costs around 1k – went down the drain. The kit also has a peace that is apparently taped over the passenger side airbag panel . Wonder who manages these at Tata.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-accessory_dash_mats.jpg

Ventilated Car Seat Cover with Massager (Honda)
I bought the Honda accessory launched with Elevate since it had a year warranty – from Honda. Consumes about ten watts. It serves the purpose and vibrations from the massager feels good. There are three speed levels and I usually max it out every time I get in the car (it doesn’t remember last setting and doesn’t turn on automatically). It makes the seats slightly uncomfortable and is a bit noisy (in Tiago’s silent cabin). It looks out of place with Tiago’s white leatherette seats and is one size large. Costs 6k at a Honda dealer.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-accessory_ventilated_seat.jpg

Door Guards (MGP)
Cheap rubber guards from MGP catalogue. Costs Rs. 5 per piece.

Door Visor & Sill Guard (Falcon)
After market from Boodmo. The fit is not perfect but costs only a fraction (~1.5k for both) of the genuine accessory.

Frameless Wiper blades (Bosch Clear Advantage)
Tata Nexon and Altroz has more premium wiper blades; Decided to change them just for aesthetics. The stock ones are not hidden from view when they are resting. I don't see any difference in performance; Bosch is perhaps less noisy.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-accessory_frameless_bosch_wiper.jpg

Side Door Beading (Galio-GFX)
After market from Boodmo; fit isn’t perfect because of gap in adhesive strip. Wonder if it will lead to rusting.

45w Fast Charger (Ugreen)
Since the car only has 12v sockets and a USB slot of connecting the phone, bought this off amazon. Cost me around 1.7k. Has a USB C port with 45w output and another 18w for USB A. Can connect both my phone and dashcam.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-accessory_ugreen_charger.jpg

Dashcam (70mai Dashcam Pro)
Gift from my brother for Grand i10. There was too much glare when installed on Tiago's windshield. Had to buy the dealer’s CPL filter (nexdigitron) to reduce this.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_windshield_glare.jpg

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_sensor_dashcam.jpg

H7 LED’s for Hight Beam (Blaupunkt Velocity 55w)
This is a genuine accessory for the car authorized by Tata. Got it installed since the high beam is poor on the Tiago. They charged 7k including labour. The technician told me they will have to cut the rubber gasket, but I insisted on not doing that.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-accessory_led.jpg

They then removed the entire assembly and shoved the unit inside. Works well and comes with a 2-year warranty:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_bulb_replacement.jpg

I have not changed the projectors yet since they did not have a compatible accessory in stock. Perhaps leaving it as stock is better since I'm not sure about performance of LED unit in rainy weather.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_lamps_edited.jpg

It is difficult to do this without removing the assembly:
Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tiago_ev_hard_to_reach_lamp_assembly.jpg

Mods
Have only done the parcel tray strings (used a mix of Tata and Hyundai genuine parts). Planning to get reverse sensors installed one way or the other. Another mod planned is the rear head rests; it would need welding, so on hold for now.

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-mod_parcel_tray.jpg

Last edited by thomahawk : 26th January 2024 at 01:57.
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Old 26th January 2024, 02:55   #12
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re: Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review

Thread moved from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 26th January 2024, 12:57   #13
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Re: Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review

Thanks for a well detailed review, lots to learn for first time EV buyers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thomahawk View Post

Moment of Truth


...
I asked my father why he slammed the brake again, he said he can’t modulate the brake pedal properly. He was diabetic and had weak sensation on his toes and foot. With the manual, he said he could manage it using the clutch pedal. Once we got home, he said he doesn't want to get into an accident and he will continue to use the old car. He said he anyway use a car only when he couldn't manage it without it. That was the last time he took the Tiago on a busy road.

I never had him test drive any of the cars; I broke an important rule. It was a very stupid mistake.
...
Sorry to hear it didn't work out as you planned. I guess its natural to assume EV with such smooth driving will only be easier to drive for your father and avoid bothering him with test drives. But your post highlights the importance of the intended person test driving at least the finalised car before booking.

But did your father try driving with regen set to the highest level, that way just taking foot of the accelerator would give moderate braking? Or maybe some tuning of the brakes?
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Old 26th January 2024, 13:20   #14
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Re: Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review

Exceptional, unbiased & detailed ownership reviews of cars have started going to our homepage reviews box. It's the ultimate stamp of trust from Team-BHP (as a platform) because lakhs of visitors every month check out reviews from there & make purchase decisions.

Your review has also gone here. Thank you so much for sharing .

Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review-tata-tiago.jpg

Last edited by Aditya : 27th January 2024 at 08:26.
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Old 26th January 2024, 14:22   #15
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Re: Getting Zapped | Tata Tiago EV Ownership Review

Hi Thomahawk! Lovely review of the Tiago EV.

Regarding the ICE, could you please check and let me know what software version the unit is running? Our Pre-Worshipped 2020 Tiago XZ+ has the 2019 version but Android Auto is somewhat laggy and hence, would like to get it updated to the newest version.

Thanks!
Akashdeep
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