Tata Tiago Review & Pictures: Tata's Tiara


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TSIVipul

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Tata Tiago Review Synopsis:
  • Tata Tiago price tag starts at Rs.3.20 Lakh (Ex.showroom, Delhi). It officially launched in India on 6th April 2016.
  • It’s available in both, Petrol as well as Diesel versions and is aimed squarely at Maruti Suzuki Wagon-R, Celerio and likes.
  • The 1.2L three cylinder petrol produces 83.88 BHP of peak power and 114.4 Nm of peak torque with an ARAI certified fuel economy of 23.84 Kmpl.
  • Diesel engine is a 3-cylinder 1.05L unit producing peak power of 69.04 BHP and a peak torque of 140 Nm with an ARAI certified fuel economy of 27.28 Kmpl.
  • Tiago being new entrant in A2 (compact) segment offers many segment first features along with an impressive comfort, ride and handling as it’s set of USP.
Has Tata Motors finally got the formula right? Let’s find out.
 
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TSIVipul

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Tata Tiago: Introduction and Overview


Circa 1998, Tata motors introduced the Indica to Indian market. Known to be the most modern passenger car ever developed by any Indian manufacturer back then, the Indica marked the foray of Tata motors into the passenger car segment and how. Carrying the tagline of ‘More car per car’ being a spacious and affordable car; the Indica went on to revolutionize the Indian compact car market carrying the USP of “Footprint of Zen and space of Ambassador and all at a cost slightly above that of Maruti 800”. Yes, Indica launched with it all and stood true to its tagline. Was it a success? Well, take it this way, this baby Tata way back in 1998 garnered a booking of whopping 1,15,000 units within a week of unveiling.

Then what went wrong? Well, the first batches had quality, reliability and performance issues, which were quickly addressed by Tata in V2. That’s when cabbies entered and turned Indica into our national cab in a short span of 2 - 3 years. This resulted in a bit of hesitation from private buyers and adding more to the woes was the lackluster attitude of Tata motors which resulted in no timely updates and Indica now seems a bit too long into the tooth. There was a time when Indica got more than 1 million takers within ten years of launch but without any significant updates, this despite of being a good looking and tremendous value for money car, was bound to fail the test of time and that happened. Although Tata motors presented other products too to keep its momentum maintained in the passenger car segments of the market like Indica Vista, Indigo (again a runaway success initially), Indigo CS and Manza but none could repeat the success story of Indica and Tata motors slowly began losing its steam.

Tata Motors was well enjoying their position at number 3 by volume in Indian car market until in May 2012 when Mahindra dethroned them from this position too and since then Tata has been only losing on various fronts. More so because Tata seemed to have lost their main USP of ‘spacious diesel cars at low cost’ to the competitors, especially the likes of Maruti Suzuki Swift which actually struck right at the points where the Indica and its siblings were weak. Then Karl Slym came to put the Horizonext strategy into play, four foundation pillars for the Horizonext strategy were intense customer focus, world-class manufacturing practices, enrichment of customer purchase experience and a service with consistent quality.


Soon Tata introduced two new products: Zest and the Bolt which, although seemed to be a major deviation from their regular portfolio in terms of quality, fit and finish, practicality, performance etc but still had the resemblance of Indica line up with a jacked up stance and of course the exterior design. Zest although got a fair to good response from the market but it is the Bolt which got a cold response. Anyhow, these two seemed to be make shift products before the Horizonext strategy has properly come into play and in fact helped Tata test waters and make out what deviations they actually need in their products to set the pulse of buyers running, and of course to make out what all homework still remains to be done.

Well, in this relentless pursuit to get back into the buyers' radar; just like a cat which fights back real hard when its back is up against a wall, Tata motors have this time put their heart and soul into making of this small car, the Tiago. Started as project ‘Kite’, with a time period of around 3 years right from the conception to complete product development, Tiago has been one of the fastest developed vehicles by Tata motors. Initially named ‘Zica’ which stood for ‘Zippy Car’, this hatchback which is placed under the Bolt has a lot going for it. As per May 2016 sales figures, Tata motors has been pushed to sixth position by Toyota and total volumes are now lesser than even that the Indica alone used to sell a couple of years ago. Tiago is the product which, for now is single handedly having the responsibility of pulling Tata back from the brink of being lost in the books. More products will follow sooner or later as per the Horizonext strategy which promises at least one new product per year. What we have with us is Tata Tiago, the newly developed product which has been designed and engineered using the expertise of international teams. We have taken the Tiago on a good long drive just to discover what this baby Tata has to offer.
 
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Tata Tiago: Looks and Design


Whenever I think of a Tata hatchback, an egg comes into my mind and a rotten one at that (c’mon, it’s more than 15 years since the egg inspired Indica came into existence). With nearly all Tata hatches in past having no edges (Do eggs have edges?), no sharp creases, a jacked up stance like they are standing on their heels and yes, they all look like they are derived from an Indica, which in turn is derived from egg shell and hence they are all an egg; with some creases (deep thinking). This is where the Tiago comes in as a fresh breath of air, it has edges, it looks and feels European, very reasonable, no jacked up stance and tyres do fill the arches well. Sounds different and gorgeous ehh? Well, it is. The design looks energizing and new, nothing like what we had in Zest and Bolt which had a resemblance or two of the Vista. The Tiago looks like a new product developed grounds up from the scratch and it works. Tiago has got creases, edges, very European essence and near perfect proportions. The overall design looks very appealing, the smiling Tata grille is there but in what a beautiful way; modern and proportionate; giving the Tiago a much agreeable stance. Well, looks like the IMPACT design language is quite spot on and quite fits to the mantra ‘immediate impact at first sight, lasting impact over time’. Well, what’s IMPACT now? Read it here.


Up front the first thing you notice is the gloss black grille carrying the new 3-dimensional Tata logo in the middle of it. Well, gone are the days when we had that old smiling grille with a lot of chrome in it, what we have now is a much elegant design with hexagonal design language, gloss black finish (which other car in this segment has it?). And yes, this grille is really wide. The grille extends to the headlamps, appreciable is the way the hexagonal rings do get smaller in the size as we approach extreme ends and end up into a solid gloss section before meeting the headlamps. Instead of having multiple chrome slats into the grille like many competitors, Tata has simply went on its own way by providing their signature humanity line which seamlessly integrates into the headlamps and not only this, there is a neat attention to detail. The humanity line doesn’t end up inside the headlamps only but seamlessly passes through the headlamps and merges with the joint line between the front bumper and the quarter panel, although it loses the chrome finish here (it would look weird there of course) but anyone with an eye for detail will definitely appreciate this design element. Check this picture to make out what I precisely mean when I say that humanity line passes through the headlights and integrates into the bumper-quarter panel joint line:


There is another prominent crease which starts adjacent to the headlamps at their extreme ends and runs parallel to the headlamp outline vertically. After that it starts running parallel to the humanity line ending into the upper half of the sides of the registration plate area. The lower air dam also carries the similar hexagonal grille pattern as on the upper grille but there is no gloss black finish here, anyhow; we still appreciate that Tata paid attention here and not given us 2-3 bland looking horizontal slats. Adjacent to lower air dam sits two round fog lamps enclosed inside a chrome ring which isn’t actually complete; but the section where the chrome ends is the one where only few will anyways notice. The minor crease running on the bumper just below the registration plate seamlessly ends into the wheel arches and will give its actual impression only in shades like Red and Sunburst Orange, others may have it ignored or not having its presence felt. Additionally there is this V-shaped crease on bonnet which virtually ends into the grille (going by their direction of flow from the point they fade at) and flows into A-pillars. An attractive design element is black appliqué on the bonnet which employs windscreen washer nozzles too, it looks even better on the lighter shades. Trust me; it adds quite a bit to the design element. The only concern is about plastics losing their finish with time, especially in the cars which are parked under sun most of the time.
 
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Tata Tiago: Looks and Design

All the lines give the Tiago a very unique design for the segment it competes in where we have the designs as exciting as Vanilla in the form of Wagon R, Celerio etc. The build of bumper, fit and finish as well as the bonnet shut line etc all felt quite well with very consistent panel gaps. We tried tapping with thumb on the bumper and some sections, the result was satisfying as there was no major depression in the bumper (minor should be there) and the build also felt decent without any tinny sounds. Here is a shot showing the creases on the bonnet and bumper:


Coming to the side, first thing you notice is that Tiago is different. It is no more the same age old bulky Tata riding small wheels with a jacked up stance. The entire side profile looks very proportionate and yes, the tyres now fill the wheel well quite well without that old jacked up stance in the rear quarter. The design theme of IMPACT design language seems to come quite alive here as the side profile looks all ‘EXciting’, ‘EXpressive’, and even has a couple of ‘EXtraordinary’ touches too. Look at Tiago’s side and you’ll definitely appreciate the sporty stance this baby Tata has got with near perfect proportions. Front quarter has quite a character with those wrapped around head lamps and a strong crease that begins from edge of headlamp, this crease flows all the way to back making for the window line and then slowly fades into the C-pillar after turning towards the roof. Additionally the crease under the headlamps and over the fog lamps makes their presence felt quite strongly from the side profile. There’s also a unique design element in front grille that gives it a semi-circular design biased towards the outside as we move on the center. Although other cars too have a similar design pattern but here in case of Tiago, it’s a bit more amplified and the gloss finish just adds more to it.

side profile.JPG

Well, Tata has added quite a bit of drama to the side profile but in what way! Nothing at all seems to be overcooked and there is exactly the right amount of every ingredient. On the front quarter panel starts this another strong crease which very tastefully runs parallel to the window line and ends up meeting the tail lamp giving it an edge. On the same crease are the tastefully designed door handles. Notice the design of door handles, don’t they look like arrowheads? Wow, what a tasteful touch of detail. Anyone with an eye for detail will definitely appreciate these minor touches of detail which Tata has very tastefully incorporated in side profile. Adding more to drama are the sculpted wheel arches and this lower crease which runs parallel to lower shut line of the doors and slowly fades into the rear door itself. We doubt if anyone would need to get the side beadings for Tiago given the style elements and a worry to spoil the side profile. The rear quarter hints a resemblance of Ford Figo but that’s not a cause of concern. The ten spoke alloy wheels carry a neutral design theme, but they cleaning them will be a painful task. However, what we do appreciate are consistent panel gaps and shut lines; Tata has done a commendable job considering what their products were 3 - 4 years ago.


Tiago looks chic from front and rear is no different. We’ve have become habitual of designs with a lot of drama on front and sides but a bland rear; not with Tiago for sure. At the top there’s a small spoiler with black extensions. They look and stand apart but my biggest fear; yes, let me speak it out – the worry that they may get loose or break or fall apart or rattle, is gone. I hit them quite hard a few times but they remained sturdy. The rear windscreen is like most of our style laden cars – compromised and is on a smaller side if we go by practicality and so is the well chiseled tail gate. The creases are prominent and it’s the crease from the side flowing to the tailgate passing through tail lamps and ending at the ‘T’ logo, everything is well designed I must appreciate but the loading lip is on a higher side and tailgate opening is bit narrow too. What else? Well, the name and variant decals but no mention or no variants differentiation to tell you if the car you are following is a petrol or diesel (BTW exhaust does that job). :biggrin:

The rear bumper is large but the bulk is well-hidden by design elements. There is this small section in middle for putting hand to open the tail gate (which in itself is light). There’s a tastefully added black appliqué on lower half of the bumper which takes the cake here. Registration plate is housed on the same section and there’s provision for rear foglamps too (perhaps for foreign markets and future facelift). This black section definitely helps break the bulk and looks pleasing to the eye, especially on the lighter shades. On a different note, the silver display car at dealership made me weak at the knees because of elegant black bits on hood, rear spoiler, rear bumper and above all, the gloss black grille which just knocked me out in no time. Personal viewpoint here, but if Tiago ever falls in my shopping list then it has to be in silver.
 
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Tata Tiago: Interiors, Features and Comfort

Before moving on to the interiors, sharing an excerpt of the IMPACT design language from official press release:
The Interior of the vehicle will be defined through ‘INviting’, ‘INtelligent’ and ‘INtouch’ features.
  • Inviting interior architecture and proportions including Layered Cockpit Design; Driver Focussed layout; Outstanding Textures, Fabrics and Materials

  • Intelligent Cabin Layout with clever storage spaces, surprise & delight features. All displays, commands & controls will be within easy & intuitive reach

  • Intouch and connected to the world inside and outside the vehicle
Open the front doors and the first thing you will notice is the heft. Yes, the doors of Tiago are hefty going by the segment standards and feel more so because of the wafer light doors of Wagon-R and Celerio. Close the door and there is a thud with which the door closes and this is what welcomes you in:


It’s since the Zest and Bolt that Tata has deviated from their older dash themes but it is the Tiago which came as the biggest surprise of all. Of late, like many other manufacturers; Tata also has deviated from beige and what we have is a black + grey dashboard. Anyhow, the first points of contact when you enter the car are steering wheel and driver’s seat and while being seated in the driver’s seat (Yes, you don’t sit on them like in Celerio or Wagon R but you seat in them) the first thing anyone will praise is the seat design and cushioning. I am a 5’10” medium sized adult and had absolutely nothing to complain with those front seats. They are sized perfect, the cushioning is spot on and best part; thigh support is adequate (something almost all low stance hatchbacks miss). The steering wheel is carried from Bolt and scores well in terms of look and functionality. The diameter is on a smaller size but thick rim with right contouring given at right places.

Although the cockpit design is more or less simple, but what makes it different from the plain designed cockpits of the competitors is the dual color theme as well as the design language itself. The dashboard is well sculpted and there are many minor design elements which the customers will appreciate during the term of their ownership. The upper layer of dash and the door pads is in a well textured material that is going to please the customers for sure. Additionally, piano black finished AC vents (body color in orange and red cars) just add that last bit to the feel good factor which will anyway help prospective buyers sign on dotted line.

Driver Focused Layout: Well, “if it’s a Tata car then it will be an ergonomic disaster”, that’s the notion I always carried for Tata cars but not anymore. Steering wheel is small but acceptably well sized, the steering rim seems to have the right thickness, the buttons feel perfectly placed, horn pad is also easily reachable and requires acceptable effort to blowing the horn. But the adjustment range seemed quite less; I wish it was an inch or two more towards the lower side as the steering always felt set a bit high to me. The brushed aluminum finish on the steering wheel as well as on the instrument panel does look nice and had a durable touch to it. The instrument cluster has two pods of which it houses a tachometer on the left and speedometer on the right.

instrument panel.JPG

The temperature and fuel gauges in form of LED lights (very inaccurate, we would have preferred analog needle or digital display here) inside the left and right pod respectively. In the center is MID that shows data like which door is open, instantaneous FE, twin trip computer, average FE for both the trips, gear shift indicator on the top along with gear shift recommendation. On the top of MID is the drive mode display which simply states if the vehicle is in city mode or economy mode. Additionally, there are regular warning signs in the instrument panel for various purposes. The seat belt reminder is the one with an alarm and the alarm gets annoyingly sharp once the speed goes over 20 kph; this will force even the most shameless guys out on roads to buckle up.

Part sharing: Instrument panel is shared between both diesel and petrol siblings, only the needle turning red is different for showing redline. But yes, 8000 rpm marking looks a bit too optimistic on the diesel, especially for an engine which redlines at 4000 rpm itself. The stalks are same as that of other Tata cars and that’s no bad. The chunky stalks have all the controls over them like front and rear wiper controls on the left stalk and all the lighting controls on the right stalk along with that of blinkers. There is that dummy button too which we used to oppose strongly in first gen Storme for being the ICE mode selection button. Though it would have been better if Tata had kept at least headlight leveling switch different as both the stalks seem to be a bit too cluttered with the controls. The saving grace is that they feel well built and positive in action too but yes, many controls means more expenses in case anything fails.

The hexagonal ORVMs provide nice view of the going on behind the car. The IRVM has a limited scope of coverage, thanks to small rear windshield. It’s also positioned in such a way that coverage won’t be far enough, there will always be some bias towards downwards, I guess a placement around an inch lower could have helped here (I was driving with seat at lowermost position BTW). Overall visibility is really good given the fact that the glass area is quite large and you sit quite high even at the lowest seating position. The driver’s seat itself is quite comfortable place to be in but pedals, like most of the Tata cars seem to be placed a bit too close to each other (my foot touched brake once while depressing the clutch). And yes, there is a dead pedal too, although a bit away from clutch but there is one, it is on a higher side but still better than not having one at all.


Outstanding Textures, Fabrics and Materials: Well, the upper black portion of the dash gives a sense of premium quality, be it the plastic quality or the texture on it; we couldn’t resist but appreciate it. Mark my words; some cars from even two segments above also don’t get such quality plastics with such a rich texture. What disappointed us a bit is the quality of lower grey section of the dash but it is also well acceptable if one goes by the price this car asks for. Ya, you can say that this lower dash in no time will remind you how much you have paid for this car at times anyhow. The fit and finish is on a good side (not close to Hyundai standards but maybe segment best) and so is the material quality overall. The piano black finish on the AC vents, inner door handles (front only) as well as around the center console gives a good sense of luxury and so are the tastefully added touches of chrome (I’m happy that Tata has deviated from overdose of chrome in and out) especially the ones those surround the AC vents. The door latch is chrome finished and looks quite well. What is a downside is that there is no dedicated central locking button and there are those ugly old school pull type door locks; the quality of them is decent though.

The seats are made up of a durable fabric and they feel good too. Roof lining feels real nice and will never give you the feeling of a budget car. The buttons have a nice tactile feel to the way they work (some people like a bit of heft in buttons, including me and there these buttons disappoint but they aren’t bad either) and so is the finishing on the ICE and AC controls, overall there is very less to complain and if you bring the price into picture then we are also left searching for the points where we can put a complaint or two. What actually makes for biggest amusement is the glovebox opening mechanism. Firstly there’s a nicely integrated button on top black section of dashboard. Secondly, the glovebox opens up in a very damped manner. My photographer friend opened and closed it at least 50 times just to get a feel of it time and again (it’s actually that good; even I too did the same).

Additionally the rear seat passengers also will be happy to have a decent amount of legroom and nicely contoured seats instead of a flat bench. Although the seats are set a bit low but they aren’t devoid of the legroom and thigh support. Headroom can be a bit of concern for anyone over 5’ 10” as I was also facing the problem of my hair brushing against the roof. There is no piano black here but the door trim has good fit and finish. The legroom is acceptable for anyone upto height 5’10” sitting behind an another occupant of same height, six footers may feel a bit claustrophobic on the rear seats at least and if co-driver a six footer too then rear passenger is definitely going to curse them.
 
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Tata Tiago: Interiors, Features and Comfort


Any Zest and Bolt owner may know the value of storage spaces; especially that small single cup holder ahead of the gear lever in which they try to store everything. They will definitely break into tears and emotionally explain you how they use every single dimple inside the cabin to store a thing or two. Thankfully that’s not the case with Tiago. There’s plenty of storage space inside to store all your knick knacks around and the best part is that those storage spaces are ‘actually’ useful. The front door pockets have two 500 ml bottle holders each, but they will fit only small sized or those tall 500 ml bottles which are small in diameter. The rear door pockets get one bottle holder each and these ones can easily store a 600 ml bottle and a small 200 ml bottle parallel to it.

In terms of in-dash storage, there’s a dedicated flat section smack in the middle where one can put idols, car freshener etc. There is a small storage cubbyhole for storing medium sized mobile phone etc on the right of steering wheel, a large storage space just under the AC controls (can hold even a large 6 inch screen phone) on the center console, 3 glass holders (which can veer hold three glasses together of the sizes they are cut in) in the middle, a small cubby behind them with an arrangement for an another 12V socket and behind all, just in between the front seats backrest is the biggest cubby hole which can serve as the only 1-liter water bottle holder for the entire cabin. Being in the center, the rear middle passenger; who actually will be cursing for being there due to high floor hump for most of the time will find this cubbyhole practical.

On the right hand side of front passenger footwell is this smart luggage hook which can be flip opened whenever you have anything light to carry, this hook can carry up to two kg of loads and that means no more pulses, milk, curd etc being placed on seats and hence no more the risk of having spilled eatables in the car. The rear right hand side roof handle gets a coat hook too.


The cooled glovebox is acceptable in terms of size and is just good enough to carry documents, some CDs etc and perhaps small tidbits; but wait, there is something more here, a practical shelf to easily store your tablet, small books etc


The boot is a generously spacious at 242 liters. Its opening is narrow and a bit high too (people like me who carry 50 kg wheat bags will never like it), other than that everything is quite well. On both the sides are 3 Kg hooks for carrying the items and yes, the boot is illuminated with a small light on the right hand side. The rear seat does not offer split function but can be folded flat. You can fold it normally for carrying light items which are large in size and can also remove the seat base and fold it almost flat when you need to haul medium to heavy luggage. All displays, commands and controls will be within easy and intuitive reach. Tata design team has certain done a good work here. Be it illuminated power window switches, AC and ICE controls or the steering mounted controls; everything seems to be placed just spot on. Only wish if the ORVM controls were provided on the driver’s door armrest, it would have made for a perfect fit.


In-Car Entertainment is one of the strongest USPs of Tata Tiago. The ICE from Harman with a sound quality and features can be unheard even a segment above. If you think that it will give you that sort of ‘tashan’ quotient then you are right. Be it sound quality or features, this Harman unit has got enough to keep any ICE enthusiast busy for at least couple of hours. It packs radio, MP3, USB, Bluetooth (telephony too) and auxiliary playback and also doubles up as your park assist display along with the offline navigation tool. The sound quality from 4-speakers and 4-tweeters is simply the best. Adding to this, the juke car app will give a distinct advantage, using this app one can create a single playlist by adding songs from separate devices inside the vehicle having juke app installed in them. This way everyone can add their favorite song(s) to the playlist.


Additionally, the offline maps provide the facility of turn by turn navigation giving all the info along with voice instructions, helpful but it would have been better to have a proper screen where one can get the position display like in Google maps. The ‘display off’ button on top left, turns off the screen with songs still on; a convenient feature while driving at night. All in all, the interiors along with ICE are impressive and a good place to be in. The best bit about the interiors is that they won’t keep remind you how much you have paid for this car. In fact, in terms of exterior and interior design, seating comfort and features; the Tiago owners will find it quite acceptable even in the company of cars from a segment above including Swift, Grand i10 etc.
 
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Tata Tiago: Engine and Performance

20160319_113823.jpg

1.2L Revotron petrol and 1.05L Revotorq turbo diesel are two engine options which the Tiago comes with. The petrol is an in-line three cylinder 1199 cc unit equipped with DOHC and 4 valves per cylinder (that’s one for better efficiency) under square engine with bore * stroke tipping the scales at 77mm * 85.8 mm. The power output stands at 83.88 bhp @ 6000 rpm and a rated peak torque of 114.4 Nm @ 3500 +/-70 rpm. Unlike the previous Revotron engines, this one didn’t get a turbocharger and has one cylinder less too. This is anyhow an all new unit grounds up and has an all aluminum construction. The diesel engine is an in-line three cylinder 1047 cc unit equipped with DOHC and 4 valves per cylinder, under square with bore * stroke tipping scales at 75m * 79 mm, this common rail turbocharged unit develops a peak power of 69.04 bhp @ 4000 +/-50 rpm with a rated peak torque of 140 nm @ 1800-3000 rpm. Both of these engines have got hydraulic lash adjusters for valve train adjustments.

Unlike the Zest and Bolt, the Tiago engines don’t get three drive modes. The sports mode is missing in case of Tiago and only City and Eco mode are available to play with. Unlike the Zest and Bolt where the immediate difference can be noticed between the drive modes; especially between the sports and other modes, in the Tiago the difference isn’t as much amplified. Well, that isn’t something we will appreciate because customers love to feel the difference and that is what Tiago doesn’t give in plenty. Actually the difference is there but it is noticable only when you push the engine a bit, if you are doing your regular day-to-day drive then you’ll notice only slight difference between the drive modes; press hard and the difference becomes apparent though. City mode is the default mode and every time you switch the ignition ON, the vehicle will automatically shift to city mode and can be switched to eco mode by the press of the ‘eco’ button on the center console.

Like any other 1.2l three cylinder unit, this engine also is not as much rev happy as much vibe happy it is. Anyone who has driven the Suzuki 1.2K or Kappa 1.2 of Hyundai will definitely be disappointed on the NVH front. But wait, this is a 3 cylinder unit from a car that belongs to a segment below. Well, bring in the 3 cylinder 1.2l engines from Nissan and VW (That’s two segments above but still a 3 cylinder 1.2l engine) and you will definitely appreciate the NVH of this baby Tata. As the engine revs, one can feel the vibes smoothening out but the engine note isn’t very inspiring at least till 3000 rpm mark, after which one would love to listen to the exhaust note which even crackles very slightly at times once you release the throttle with rev needle hovering near its top end.


This isn’t a rev hungry engine and the power build up also has no sense of urgency but where this 3-cylinder engine excels is the drivability. You can potter around the town in a gear higher than what you will select in most of the competitors and this engine will keep pulling the car without any drama or without asking you to put your left foot on the clutch pedal. The engine can revv all the way to 6300 rpm where the rev limiter comes into play and tell you that it’s the time to upshift, what we liked is that the rev limiter is not an over enthusiastic unit and will tell you in a calm manner where to stop. Anyhow it’s no use pushing this engine hard as all the entertainment lasts hardly till 5000 rpm, after which the progress is nothing to write home about. 100 kph comes around 2750 rpm in fifth gear.

The clutch action, like any Tata isn’t progressive and it is more like an ON-OFF switch, it either is fully depressed or isn’t, don’t get me wrong; the clutch is on a lighter side and there is nothing weird about the way it engages or disengages but that feel factor is missing where one easily discovers the biting point in no time and clutch feels very progressive. The gearshifts are light but there is some notchiness associated to this gearbox, the throws are medium but not very precise. In fact the gear lever had a tendency to get stuck in the mid every time we tried to shift between the first and second or third and fourth gears, other than that everything else was acceptable for a petrol drivetrain.

While the petrol engine has a bit of resemblance to the diesel engines in terms of NVH, the diesel felt much better in this department. The vibrations are less and overall NVH feels a bit better. The vibrations do exist but this one feels a bit more refined as compared to the petrol one. In terms of performance, this engine is just adequate enough to keep the car being driven around and there is absolutely nothing that we can term enthusiastic. Being a low displacement engine, the low end is where you would seldom want to keep this engine at, just press the throttle and it’s around 1500 rpm that the power build up starts and it’s at around 1800 rpm that the engine actually wakes up and starts pulling with the pull getting stronger and stronger all the way to 3500 rpm after which the progress is again slow. Redline comes at 4000 rpm and the engine revs all the way to 4500 but it’s no use pushing the engine to those limits. Work the gearbox well and you won’t be concerned about the turbo lag, it’s just that when you up shift quickly then the turbo lag raises its ugly head and can get even annoying as there seems to be absolutely zero performance if there is even slight incline and 4 people on board.


This is more pronounced between the second and third gear as the third gear is on a taller side while the second gear is a bit short. In fact if you end up shifting at even 30 kph into third then you are again back from meat of powerband at around 2250 rpm to a lazy 1300-1350 rpm point and that’s definitely going to be very annoying. Fifth gear seems to have the right ratio and 100 kph comes at a shade above 2500 rpm. Overall everything seems to be quite acceptable and the owners will seldom complain on the performance front, at least going by the segment standards. Clutch is more or less identical to the petrol Tiago in terms of pedal feel and slightly (very slightly) on the tighter side and overall NVH of this engine is well appreciable, in fact which revving around 2000 rpm doing 80 kph on highways, we could have a very silent cabin as the engine sound was quite well out of the cabin but wind sound from A-pillar was there for sure despite multiple layers of insulation. What actually surprised us is the fact that first three gears are absolutely same ratios for both petrol and diesel contrary to what we normally see as petrols having shorter gear ratios, maybe Tata opted to have shorter gear ratios initially to aid the turbo lag in case of diesel as in the petrol powered Tiago, we were okay with the gear ratios.
 
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TSIVipul

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Tata Tiago: Ride and Handling


Steering wheel is just as nice to operate as it’s to hold. This short diameter unit is light at city speeds and weighs up really well as the speeds build up. Four of us drove the Tiago time and again (Honda, Ford, VW and Hyundai owner) and all of us appreciated the steering wheel. It’s absolute breeze at the city speeds and quite confident at the three digit speeds. The communication from wheel is very positive and it can be well placed above most of the competition in terms of operation and feel. The one of the petrol felt even smoother at low city speeds; maybe because of a lighter note but at high speeds, the feedback and heft are nearly same.

Suspension and ride quality are Tata’s forte and Tiago is no exception. In fact it just makes that reputation of Tata even stronger. We hit a real bad stretch and Tiago surprised us with the suspension setup, the same stretch where I used to get a crashy ride in most of the cars from even triple segments above, the Tiago simply dismissed everything we threw at it and we did it at a good speed. Like the Zest and Bolt, Tata has used the dual path struts up front with 2 cup system which no other hatchback incorporates in the segment or even above (except Zest and Bolt) and they prove their worth quite well in Tiago, video of Tiago passing over rough surface has been attached in the video section, I let that speak now for me. Brakes are definitely the best in class by all the measures.


We conducted the 80 – 0 Kph braking test and the performance was nothing but outstanding. The Bosch’s ninth generation ABS + EBD with CSC works really well with accurate amount of feel at the pedal, thus offering a very precise feedback. Overall we have returned impressed from the dynamic test and it won’t be exaggeration to declare Tiago head and shoulders above the rivals and even some cars from a segment or two above in this specific area.

In terms of safety, the top end variant is equipped with ABS + EBD with CSC as well as dual front airbags. Adding to which, there are optional variants throughout the range which get dual airbags, height adjustable driver seat and adjustable front headrests. Now to answer the chief question: Has Tata Motors finally got the formula right? This new baby Tata has succeeded in impressing us and our initial impressions are all positive about this car. As an ideal family hatchback for regular city commute and quick highway trips; Tiago makes a strong case for itself. The design is definitely pleasing and so are the interiors. Both engines are frugal and refined. The ride and comfort are by far the class leading and so is the space inside with very comfortable seats. Overall, Tiago seems to have hit the right balance of all ingredients for making it a successful product. On top of that, a mouth watering sticker price is just a cherry on the cake.
 
Thread Starter #9

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Tata Tiago: Likes, Dislikes and Star Ratings


You’ll Love:[thumbsup]
  • Price; it’s a tremendous value for money.
  • Balanced exterior design. Build quality is appreciable.
  • Features, fit 'n finish of interiors. No apparent cost cutting.
  • Awesome ride quality. Suspension is simply the best in class.
  • Good all-around visibility, proportions and steering make it a competitive city car.
You’ll Loathe: [thumbsdown]
  • Rear seat headroom is an issue for tall passengers.
  • NVH levels could have been better. Particularly in petrol.
  • Perceptions are changing although some may still shy away from Tata brand name alone.
  • Tata’s after sales is a risky proposition. Being newly developed engines, their long term reliability is yet to be seen.
  • Both 3-cyl engines are mediocre in performance. There are also conflicting reports regarding FE from petrol owners.
Tata Tiago Star Ratings:
  • Design and Quality.................:
  • Comfort and Features............:
  • Engine and Performance.........:
  • Handling and Ride Quality.......:
  • Safety and Security Levels.....:
  • Overall Fuel Consumption.......:
  • Sales and Service Network.....:
  • Value For Money Factor.........:
  • The Automotive India's Verdict:
Here's how to interpret above ratings: The Automotive India Reviews Star Ratings Explained
 
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Tata Tiago: Price, Specifications, Comparison and Brochure

Tata Tiago vs Maruti Suzuki Celerio vs Maruti Suzuki Wagon-R vs Chevrolet Beat


Tata Tiago Price (Ex.showroom, Delhi):

Petrol
  • XB: Rs.3,20,000
  • XZ: Rs.4,75,000
  • XE: Rs.3,59,500
  • XM: Rs.3,89,500
  • XT: Rs.4,19,500
Diesel
  • XB: Rs.3,94,500
  • XE: Rs.4,29,500
  • XM: Rs.4,69,500
  • XT: Rs.4,99,500
  • XZ: Rs.5,54,000
Tata Tiago Specifications:

Petrol
  • Engine: 1199 CC
  • Power: 84 BHP
  • Torque: 114 Nm
  • Transmission: 5 Manual
  • Fuel Efficiency: 23.84 Kmpl
Diesel
  • Engine: 1047 CC
  • Power: 69 BHP
  • Torque: 140 Nm
  • Transmission: 5 Manual
  • Fuel Efficiency: 27.28 Kmpl
General Specifications
  • Front Brakes: Disc
  • Rear Brakes: Drum
  • Front Suspension: McPherson Strut with coil Spring
  • Rear Suspension: Semi-Independent; Twist beam with dual path strut
  • Fuel Tank: 35 Liters
  • Boot Space: 242 Liters
  • Length: 3746 mm
  • Width: 1647 mm
  • Height: 1535 mm
  • Wheelbase: 2400 mm
  • Tyre Size: 155/80 R13 | 175/65 R14 (XT / XZ)
  • Turning Radius: 4.9 m
  • Ground Clearance: 170 mm
Tata Tiago Exterior Colors:
  • Berry Red*
  • Striker Blue
  • Platinum Silver*
  • Espresso Brown
  • Sunburst Orange*
  • Pearlscent White
Note: Asterisk (*) denotes our preferred choice of colors.
 

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Tata Tiago: Videos Review

Turn the key on and instrument performs a clean-swipe. A self-check feature.

In-cabin NVH at engine start up.

Engine start up, it shakes quite a bit inside the hood but the mounts do their part well and very less is transfer to the cabin.

0 - 100 Kph sprint took us approx 16.8 seconds but if the shifts are done right then a second can be saved easily.

There is enough wind noise inside at 100 Kph.

Braking performance is impressive.

Suspension easily dismisses small to medium sized undulations. Ride quality is awesome even over rough surfaces.



Here's how to fold the rear seat of the Tiago.
 
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Tata Tiago: Pictorial Review

Tata Tiago vs Chevrolet Beat



Tata Tiago vs Maruti Suzuki Wagon-R



Tata Tiago vs Maruti Suzuki Celerio



A couple of strangers came up to talk about the car. One even followed for 12 kms just to overtake and ask if he should buy it for his wife.



This front grille is a deviation from the age old smiling grille of Tata. A welcome move.



The foglamp chrome surround isn't actually a complete ring but it looks beautiful nevertheless.



Notice the dimple on the tow hook cover. Neat attention to detail and a good way of telling where exactly to press.



Headlamps are actually stylish units with smoked effect too. Notice the chrome stripe on lower portion. This is an extension of the humanity line.



Wipers do wipe quite well and the best thing is that they are out of driver's sight when in their default position.



Windshield washer spray jets are laced on the black applique of the hood.



Bonnet shut line, look at the evenness of this panel; Tata has significantly improved in this area.



The long antenna looks a bit out of sync. We wish it was a rear mounted short one.



Alloy wheels have a simple 10-spoke style but they are tough to clean. Smart extension of rear bumper, will work as a mud guard itself.



Rear windshield and wiper. Notice unique rear demister design.



Rear wiper has washer integrated into it.



Black extensions on the rear spoiler look sporty.



Sporty crease passing through the tail lamps.


 
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Tata Tiago: Pictorial Review

LED blinkers on the ORVM's. Notice the view from driver side ORVM.



ORVMs offer a good coverage, their control joystick is awkwardly positioned though. And look at what we just overtook. :biggrin:



Tyre pressure placard and VIN number are put on the B-pillars



Doors open wide and have a heft associated to them.



Pull type door lock isn't much appreciable. Don't mistake door latches for metal, they are chrome plated plastic.



Rubber stopper to prevent hit the panel hard and hence prevent rattling in long run. Nice touch. Also notice the rich door texture.



Nice and supportive front seats unarguably the best in segment.



Pedals could have been offered with better spacing.



MID shows time, gear, gear shift indicator, exact door open, twin trip meters and average as well as instantaneous fuel economy and odometer.



Center console has piano black finish surrounding it. Notice the buttons under ICE, it has buttons for fog lamps, rear demister and Eco mode.



USB / iPod and auxiliary ports in lower section of center console. Dummy hole for a second 12V socket?



The cubbyhole next to steering wheel is good enough for a medium sized smartphone.



Front tweeters are mounted on the A-pillar while the rear ones on the rear doors.



Ticket holder is something unheard in many cars from even multiple segments above.



Well-contoured and sized rear bench. They are well cushioned too.



View of rear windshield.



The rear seat legroom is quite good and there is enough space for seating two 5'10" guys one behind another.



Enough space with rear seat backrest folded. If you remove the seat base then even more space is liberated.



Pocket behind the rear seat for storing the warning triangle.



Luggage hooks on both the sides of boot.



Well packed tool kit is placed cleanly in a cubbyhole in the boot, a well covered one.



Manual boot illumination



Bootlid is insulated too.



Grip handle to shut the boot.


 
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Tata Tiago: Pictorial Review

Steering mounted controls.



AC controls receive a tinge of chrome.



Illuminated power window switches, driver side window gets auto down feature.



Illuminated keyhole, yet inserting the key wasn't a smooth affair.



Rear right roof handle handle gets a coat hook.



Flimsy flap type hood opener.



Properly hidden wiring harness in boot.



Good to hold gear lever and is neatly finished too.



Handbrake lever is light to operate.



Headroom up front is good enough but the rear is tight on headroom.



Boot and fuel lid opened in driver footwell.



Full size spare is not an alloy.


 
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Tata Tiago: Pictorial Review

Park assist displays location of obstacle as well as warnings like handbrake engaged etc. It stops working over 10 Kmph.



Both diesel and petrol get proper under hood sound deadening material.



Honeywell turbocharger.



Struts are covered. Good attention to detail.



Well tucked windshield washer pipes, very un-Tata.



The car had a rear tyre in the air on this axle twister but nothing got twisted, broken or scraped.



An idea of GC over rough surfaces



Tata bus vs Tata Tiago ground clearance for reference.



The name that has marked beginning of turn around for Tata Motors.



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