Team-BHP reader scoops Datsun Go hatchback testing in India

Brand Datsun is Japanese car maker Nissan's low cost foray. The brand will be positioned as a low cost brand not just in India, but in a whole bunch of developing countries including Indonesia, Russia and South Africa, to name just a few. A couple of months ago, Renault-Nissan supremo Mr Carlos Ghosn flew into India to unveil the first product bearing the Datsun badge on the bonnet, the Go hatchback. Billed for a 2014 Indian Auto Expo launch, the Datsun Go hatchback has already hit the testing circuit in and around the Renault-Nissan factory at Oragadam, off Chennai. 

Team-BHP reader Mr Abdul Shukoor, has sent in these spyshots, depicting a mildly camouflaged Datsun Go doing the testing rounds. The Datsun Go is a B-segment hatchback that is likely to sit under the Nissan Micra Active variant, at a price starting under 3.5 lakh rupees. To keep costs low, the Go shares parts with the Nissan Micra, as is evidenced by its 2,450 mm wheelbase and the 1.2 liter-3 cylinder petrol engine it shares with the Micra. A five speed manual gearbox will transmit the 1.2 liter engine's torque to the front wheels of the Go hatchback. Click here for additional details and official imagery of the 2014 Datsun Go. 

The Go hatchback, as will be the case with other Datsun cars, will be sold and serviced through Nissan India's dealership and after sales service networks respectively. The Datsun range of cars will have their own space within Nissan showrooms and also have a separate sales force handling the new, low cost brand. Each year, Nissan hopes to build about 10,000 units of the Go from the expanded Renault-Nissan factory in India. These ambitious plans are yet to be matched by Nissan's dealership network in India, which with 92 touch points, is a far cry from supporting the brand's aggressive volume forecasts.  

At the recently held Indonesia International Motor Show (IIMS), Nissan also showcased an MPV version of the Go hatchback. Dubbed the Nissan Go+, this compact MPV is likely to follow the Go hatchback into the Indian car market. The Go+ MPV shares its platform, engine, transmission and interiors with the Go hatchback. Datsun's third model for India is likely to be a Maruti Alto/Hyundai Eon rivaling 800 cc small car. Sharing its platform with the Renault A-Entry, the Datsun small car is likely to be launched in India during 2015. Development work is already on at the Renault-Nissan Technical Center in Chennai. 

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