Tata Zest Petrol Review: New 1.2 litre Revotron engine is impressive
Zest’s 1.2 Revotron is a 1,193 cc first in segment turbocharged petrol engine, with MPFi (Multi Point Fuel injection). Maximum power produced is 90 PS @ 5,000 rpm and 140 Nm @ 1,750 – 3,500 rpm range. Made of cast iron block and alloy head unit, Tata’s new Revotron engine operates smoothly without noticeable vibration.
Zest petrol gets first in class Multi Drive mode with Shift on fly technology. By default, engine is set on City mode, Sports or Eco system can be turned on using buttons on centre console. Each mode has different ECU settings that govern the engine to deliver appropriate throttle response, performance and fuel efficiency. While driving in each mode, difference in acceleration and vehicle behaviour were not loud.
It is possible that 1.2 Revotron engine’s linear power delivery masks performance distinction between three modes; turbo lag also is not pronounced. Zest petrol engine revs steadily upwards and downwards, but a tad too sincere at that. Sudden burst of power enthusiasts would be looking for is absent, even in sports mode. From speedo you can learn that Zest is speeding like a 90 PS 1.1 ton car should, but somehow the thrill of heavy acceleration is not passed on to driver. On paper, it is a better engine in compact sedan segment.
5 speed manual gearbox is mated to Zest Revotron engine, no AMT in petrol variant. Gear shifts are smooth, but lack mechanical feedback. You don’t get the sporty slotting or planting feel while operating the rod, but this setup facilitates effortless continuous changing of gears while negotiating heavy traffic. Considering Zest a city car, gear shifter is a boon to mile munchers and non stop errand runners.
Overall performance and drivability of Zest is better than previous Tata cars. Gear ratios are carefully spread to offer good low end and mid range power / torque delivery, not racy at high engine speeds. Good sense of gear shifting will get Zest swiftly out of situations that demand time sensitive manoeuvre or exit.
It is safe to say that Zest is a driver’s car, that would attract younger ones than typical Tata cars do. Top spec Zest gets pilot seat height adjust, and tilt steering is available in lower variants as well. Smaller than usual 360 mm steering wheel is crafted for sporty grip and control.
Buttons and instruments are driver centric; falls well within reach (Zone 1). Starting with ones on steering wheel, those behind – indicator & wiper stick switches, and all those around – ORVM and window controls on right and centre console – AC and music system on left, are very ergonomic and tactile. Material quality and feedback from switches are better than what Tata has offered thus far, proving that the company has taken intense care on moving ahead in the race.
Ironically, you don’t need to use buttons in high end Tata Zest, as Harman Infotainment system comes equipped with voice command feature that takes care of almost every control on centre console that otherwise require a manual push. Press the speak button on right spoke of steering wheel and the Zest will obey your command.
Good thing is that you don’t need to be shy saying keywords out loud, Harman understands nearly every English accent used across the diversified country of ours. It is likely that you’ll start dictating terms with Zest once you find out what all it can do for you, at least for the fun of it.
Voice command functionality can arguably add to list of safety features, reducing driver distraction and negligence, in one of most sold car segments. Other safety equipment include driver and front passenger airbags, standard 3 point seat belts for all four door-side passengers and lap belt for 5th, centre occupant at rear. Speed sensing door lock, central locking with remote, immobiliser, burglar alarm, inside day / night rear view mirror, reverse parking sensor & display, ABS with EBD and Corner Stability Control, clutch lock, follow-me headlamps (via remote) with timer adjust and LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL) are also on offer in Tata Zest compact sedan.
All said, Tata Zest is not limited to fun and fulfilment of driver alone. Backseat passengers get to enjoy ample head, shoulder & leg room, appreciable thigh support as well. Seat cushioning will absorb any bump or thud that escapes from shocks and try to get to the occupants. Zestful interior design and multi colour pattern – beige and black on dashboard, piano black, silver and chrome motifs on centre console, instrument cluster and steering wheel and brown, grey and beige combination on inside door panels come as a feast to anyone travelling in a Zest. Not to mention music coming out of 8 speaker Harman audio system.
Zest compact sedan easily accommodates 5 adults and most of their luggage inside rear boot. At an expected price bracket of Rs. 6 to 9 lakhs, Tata Zest petrol would be a well suited car for youngsters and families.
For description of Tata Zest’s exteriors, extensive picture gallery and review of diesel variant with AMT, head here.
Why would you buy Tata Zest Petrol
– Fresh exterior design
– Best in class interiors
– Peppy engine
– Drive modes to play with
Why would you not buy Tata Zest Petrol
Engine and Tech Specs