The Nano did need some upgrades from time to time and Tata never stopped working on them. Every year, Nano received enhancements in various aspects like engine, transmission, suspension, ergonomics, and other minor additions to make the car as functional and fulfilling as possible, for the budget it demands. Now we have the new top of line Nano Twist XT (Xtreme Edition) carrying one of the major functional upgrade Tata has ever given the Nano.
Tata Nano Twist XT was launched in mid January 2014 with Electric Power Assisted Steering (EPAS) and some noticeable changes in interiors. Manual steering in Nano LX is good for changing lanes but to make a serious turn, especially at higher speeds, it may not allow you to predict the path the car takes. But the new electric assist system developed by ZF Steering Gear India in association with Bosch, helps the driver effortlessly and consistently steer the Nano. This reduces driver fatigue and makes the car more fun to drive.
The new power steering not only aids turning the car, but also helps in centring the steering wheel upon exiting a U turn. The Active Return feature in the EPAS uses torque sensors to guide the assist motor to turn the steering wheel back to centre position. Unlike other cars slightly above Nano’s segment that weighs a lot more, Nano’s steering setup receives less Self Aligning Torque that does not effectively rather naturally steer the wheel back to straight position. Now this Active Return does it for you, but don’t accelerate out of the turn more than needed, wait for steering return to happen in its pace.
Not only inside the city, but on highway too the electric power steering helps boost confidence and control while driving the Nano Twist. Even over speeds of 80 kmph, the Nano feels well under control, as EPAS is programmed to give only adequate assist when necessary, to retain the feel of natural steering.
Rest of enhancements inside the cabin are aimed at providing finesse to Nano’s interiors. First I would like to thank Tata for moving the power window switches to a position that is easily accessible while driving. Other enrichments in Nano Twist’s interiors are the instrument console with multi function digital display, premium looking beige glove boxes, relocated speaker provisions and bluetooth inbuilt audio system with USB & AUX as well. The instrument console in Nano Twist displays Fuel level and Temperature level in coloured blocks, and the LCD display with orange backlight shows odo reading, trip reading, AFE (Average Fuel Economy), DTE (Distance To Empty) and time. The speedo remains analog, placed at the centre.
Overall fit and finish of Nano Twist’s dashboard looks upmarket, with good plastic quality as well. There is one glitch with complete beige and silver colouring of the panels, it reflects on the windshield when driving against the sun and causes distraction while driving.
Speaking of driving, Nano Twist hosts the same old engine in its same old state of tune. The 624cc MPFI (Multi Point Fuel Injection), water cooled, naturally aspirated petrol engine features 2 cylinders with 2 valves each. It is coupled to a 4 speed manual transmission. Max. power produced is 38 PS and peak torque is 51 Nm. Fuel efficiency of 25.4 kmpl is recorded by ARAI.
Driving through city is a breeze, delivers adequate push when needed. Good thing is that it doesn’t vibrate much, promising smooth drive while revving up. Shocks are tuned soft, absorbing most potholes and bumps at city limit speeds, without passing a bang to the driver. Softer suspension do cause quite amount of body roll, but the Nano would slide in corners if it was any harder. Brakes are good enough too, nothing to complain there.
Passenger comfort is appreciable, needless to say the Nano has got best in class roominess. Boot space behind the rear seat backrest can hold more than a shopping cart load of items or medium sized travel bags. But beware shoving groceries or laptop bags there, as quite a long trip even at night may cook the veggies or fry your laptop (engine is just underneath). With rear seat-back folded, the Nano Twist can easily gobble up a cycle frame!
Verdict – At just about Rs. 13,000 more than Tata Nano LX, Nano Twist XT makes for a great city car with very good value for money. We believe those who stopped and checked out the Nano LX and did not end up buying it yet, should consider taking a look at the Twist. We do have more expectations from Tata, which we believe will be fulfilled in the upcoming Nano Plus. Price of Nano Twist XT is Rs. 2.36 lakhs (ex-showroom Delhi).
Tata Nano provides the perfect commute option for young students and working professionals. It’s easy to park on crowded city streets, and gets you to destination and back home on an evening out. Those who’re only beginning out when it comes to driving, Tata Nano would be an esay car to use in heavy traffic keeping in mind its tiny tot appeal, apart from being an affordable small car.
Why would you buy the Nano Twist:
You have a family of 3 or more and looking for a safe and least expensive vehicle
You have a giant sedan that wouldn’t go faster in traffic and wouldn’t get into most parking spaces
You want to buy your kids their first car
You want to buy your elderly parents a car for shopping
You are young and in college, looking for your first car
Why wouldn’t you buy the Nano Twist:
AC performance is inconsistent
You need to make a lot of long distance trips
Click here to check out Tata Nano Twist AMT.