India's trade press laud world's cheapest car
Car magazines on Tuesday gave the thumbs up to the new Tata Nano, hailing the world's cheapest car as "one of the greatest bargains of all time" and "a triumph of Indian ingenuity."
The tiny car, which costs just 100,000 rupees (2,000 dollars) for the basic model, was unveiled to great fanfare Monday, with Tata Motors chairman Ratan Tata saying it would revolutionise travel for millions of Indians.
India's trade press agreed that the Nano passed the test as a bona fide vehicle, with one reviewer even suggesting it could quickly earn classic car status along the lines of the iconic Volkswagen Beetle.
"It's not a toy or an autorickshaw with a fourth wheel as many sceptics believed," said the Autocar India monthly.
"It's a credible car that does the job brilliantly for its target customers and in the process trounces much more expensive cars in areas like passenger space."
Auto India said the Nano is likely to be safer than many of its direct competitors in the small car market in India.
"The Tata Nano is worth every bit of your hard-earned money and we believe it has the makings of a cult car," it added.
Vardhan Kondvikar, from BBC Top Gear magazine, described the Nano as "one of the greatest bargains of all time."
"The Nano's a real car: By which I mean it looks, feels and drives the way you'd expect any car to," he wrote in the Mumbai Mirror newspaper.
"It doesn't feel different, or cheap, or bad just because it costs so little -- if Tata hadn't committed to a price, they could have charged twice as much and you wouldn't have blinked."