The first Tata Mo­tors car to be of­fered in the com­pact SUV seg­ment and, oh boy, what a mark it has made! The De­sign of the Year also bags the Car of the Year crown


THE IN­DIAN SUV MAR­KET IS GROW­ING AT an ex­tremely fast rate with 32 per cent of the to­tal car mar­ket share dom­i­nated by SUVs. Out of the to­tal SUV sales, the com­pact SUVs and crossovers ac­count for 39 per cent. Maruti Suzuki, Ford and Hyundai had al­ready made their mark and re­ceived huge suc­cess in the com­pact SUV seg­ment with their Vi­tara Brezza, EcoS­port and Creta re­spec­tively. How could our home­bred man­u­fac­turer, Tata, stay away from the lime­light? That's how the Nexon was born.

The Nexon marks a new era at the ven­er­a­ble Tata Mo­tors – a com­pact SUV that takes on the best in the world and comes out on top. This is a prod­uct that doesn't of­fer you par for the course but sets the bench­mark with its qual­ity, its ride and handling bal­ance, its in­te­ri­ors and most of all its styling while at the same time not for­get­ting that value for money fac­tor that has al­ways been cru­cial with Tata Mo­tors.

What is de­sign if it does not evoke an emo­tional re­sponse? That's some­thing the Tata Mo­tors de­sign team have been able to evoke bril­liantly with the Nexon and all the new gen­er­a­tion cars rolling out of their Pune fa­cil­ity. There is hardly any­thing that looks as strik­ing and ab­stract as the Nexon in its price bracket. The Nexon looks eye catch­ing, has those typ­i­cal Tata Mo­tors styling cues and looks like a con­cept car that rolled off the Expo floors di­rectly into the show­rooms. Its just been a cou­ple of months since the Nexon was launched and the car is al­ready mak­ing a strong pres­ence felt on roads, mark­ing a strong re­vival for Tata Mo­tors.

The Nexon is pow­ered with two new tur­bocharged en­gines – a 3-cylin­der, 1198cc petrol and a 4-cylin­der, 1497cc diesel unit. Both the mo­tors make sim­i­lar power out­put of 108.49bhp while the peak torque is 170Nm and 260Nm for the petrol and diesel, re­spec­tively.

What makes us fall in love with the Nexon is the way it drives. Ride qual­ity has been a USP of Tata cars since the Indica days but the Nexon sets a new bench­mark on this front. The sus­pen­sion setup pro­vides a pli­ant ride at all speeds while pos­s­esing the abil­ity to take over ev­ery­thing from speed­break­ers to mild off-road ter­rain with­out a fuss. What is in­cred­i­ble is that with proper at­ten­tion to a driver's needs, the Nexon also turned out to be an ex­cel­lent han­dler around the MMRT. All in all, a great pack­age that fuses great de­sign with ex­cel­lent prac­ti­cal­ity and good per­for­mance and dy­nam­ics. A nat­u­ral win­ner of the ti­tle of over­all Car of the Year. ⌧

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