In its bid to revive the sagging fortunes of the Nano, widely touted as world’s cheapest passenger car, Tata Motors is looking at various alternatives including launching it with a different image in another developing market such as Indonesia and then bringing it back to India.
Launched with an unprecedented hype in 2009, Nano has failed to live up to its expectations with below-par sales each year. Tata Group chairman emeritus Ratan Tata said in an interview to news channel CNBC that the company is working on re-launching the product with a more premium image.
“Maybe it (Nano) gets launched in another country like Indonesia, where it doesn’t have the stigma and the new image comes back to India. Or maybe as a changed product that gets marketed in Europe. There’s a lot of interest in Nano outside India,” Tata said.
“A re-launched Nano with some of the differences that we’re trying to incorporate, yes I do...We are going to relaunch the car not as the cheapest but in the image as it is.”
While the Nano has been launched in neighbouring markets such as Nepal and Sri Lanka, it is yet to make its debut in bigger overseas markets though it has reportedly been spotted testing in Indonesia, Malaysia and France.
Tata had in the past admitted that positioning the car as the cheapest one can have in India, was a mistake but maintained that it should have been marketed for a two wheeler owner looking for an upgrade.
“I always felt that Nano should have been marketed towards the owner of a two-wheeler because it was conceived giving the people who rode on two-wheels with the whole family an all-weather safe form of affordable transportation, not the cheapest.”