The Tata Nano EV with standard airbag and ABS would be an interesting proposition in the current scenario
Back in November 2017, Tata Motors and its long-standing collaborator Jayem Automotives announced a partnership to introduce electric version of the Tata Nano under the Jayem Neo brand. The Neo was originally supposed to be inducted into Ola Electric’s fleet with a reported order size of 400 units.
After a delay of almost 2 years, in mid-2019, it was reported that Ola Electric secured a debt fund of INR 40 cr from Tata Motors Finance to purchase Jayem Neo EV as city taxi. Now, a 2021 Tata Nano electric test mule has been spotted in Akurdi, Pune.
Tata Nano EV / Jayem Neo yet to see the light of day
It’s been over three years since the first announcement but the Tata Nano EV a.k.a. Jayem Neo has neither been introduced as an urban taxi nor as a private vehicle. However, it seems Tata and Jayem haven’t completely ditched the project as evident from the recent spotting of an undisguised Neo test mule. Spy shots are credit to Pravin Nair, who shared the images on Rushlane Spylane Facebook Group.
As far as design is concerned, the Jayem Neo is identical to the now-defunct Tata Nano but it does not feature Tata branding anywhere. This particular mule features black bumper to keep the costs low. Closer observation reveals that the Neo EV is equipped with a fully digital instrument display which is mounted above the center console.
Based on the spy video from Smiley Tamilian Tech above, the Tata Nano EV is powered by a 17.7 kW, 48V (23 hp) electric motor supplied by Electra EV, which also supplies electric powertrain to Tiago and Tigor. According to the original arrangement made 3 years ago, Tata Motors was supposed supply Jayem with complete body panels of the car and the Coimbatore-based company was supposed to install the electric powertrain and retail it.
Tata Motors discontinued the Nano as the poor demand did not justify re-engineering the vehicle to meet the latest vehicle safety norms. However, if the company still hopes to leverage the small car’s untapped potential in the emerging electric vehicle market, then a comprehensive safety update is necessary.
Whether it is going to be marketed as Tata Nano EV or Jayem Neo, the urban runabout would have to be fitted with driver airbag, ABS, front passenger seat belt reminder and reverse parking sensor as standard. Top speed will be 85 kmph. It is also FAME II certified.
The Tata Nano Electric will have a maximum range of 203 km. With AC on and 4 adults on board, the vehicle should return a range of around 140 km. We think that, with a silent powertrain and appropriate marketing strategy, the Tata Nano EV could be an interesting proposition as both urban taxi and a private vehicle.