• Efficient ride and handling
• Value for money
• Stylish cabin
Not so Good
• Rear seat lacks under-thigh support
• Engine gets vocal at high speeds
• Rear seating of 3 people is a cramped affair
Tata Tiago is Tata Motor’s latest compact hatchback that was unveiled in the first week of April 2016. Derived from the Tata Kite project, Tiago was initially named Zica. Sadly, its uncanny resemblance to ‘Zika’; a virus majorly spread around the world forced Tata Motors to opt for a different nomenclature.
Tiago is a well proportionate vehicle that illustrates a dimension of 3746mmX1647mmX1535mm with a ground clearance of 170mm. The front façade of the car sports a couple of cuts and creases which gives it a sporty look. Standing in front of the car, you will notice a hexagonal shaped grille with a chrome outline that looks like it is smiling back at you. It has a glossy black finish and houses a chrome ‘T’ logo on top of it. The headlamps are elongated making the car look pretty stylish. Below the license plate and body colored bumper, there are fog lamp at both ends of the air intake.
Moving to the side, two definite character lines are visible defining the stance of the car. One is present at the bottom of the door curling up to the handles while the other connects the front fenders with the tail lights. The rims are ten spoke alloys and the tire measurements are 175/65r14 further accentuating the silhouette of the car.
From the rear, the Tiago looks little boxy irrespective of the swollen bumper it possesses. That said, it is hard to ignore the matte black claddings around the license plate as well. Moreover, the boot-lid looks small, however inside is a modest 240-litrespace with availability of utility pouches and hangers for storage. There is a rear-window wiper and a body colored baby spoiler with black corners in Tiago which comparatively uplifts it outer layout. But what I personally admire is the elongated shape of the tail lamp which looks similar to a cat-eye.
The Ambience Inside
Stepping inside Tiago, all the preconceived notions that we had for previous Tata products are gone as the interior seems a definite step up, possibly the best Tata has ever offered in their product. In the cabin there are lots of elegant touches like the highlights of the exterior color around the horizontal air-vents. Even the dashboard has honeycombed textured plastic. Look up and you’ll notice the roofline appearing to be knitted. There is also a button present to open the glove box instead of the mainstream handle.
The Tiago is a very pragmatic car as it provides you with 22 storage spaces like bottle holders, pouches, hangers etc to store your knick knacks. The seat and steering wheel are height adjustable
The car will satisfy the tech savvy in you as it comes loaded with technology. It sports an intelligent Next-Gen Connect-Next Infotainment system with eight speaker audio system exclusively developed by Harman, first in segment applications like the Sat-Nav app and the Juke-Car app which utilizes your mobile data to create a virtual network in the car enabling you to share music and create a playlist of your choice. You can connect maximum 10 devices on the system which is a pretty good thing.
The ambience of the car is pretty good as it has a layered design theme with a dual tone interior. The seats are comfortable with body hugging seat bolsters giving it a very sophisticated feel. At the rear, legroom also is quite decent though the under-thigh support is compromised to an extent.
What Powers the car
Tata offers the Tiago with two engine options, one petrol and one diesel along with first in segment multi-drive modes; eco & city. The first is the petrol version which is a 1.2-litre 3 cylinder ‘revotron’ power-mill mated to a 5 gear manual transmission that churns out 84bhp@6000rpm and a torque of 114Nm. The car is heavy with the petrol variant measuring 1012kg. Power delivery of the Tiago is linear though the clutch feels little hard and takes time to respond in traffic. At highways, the car feels steady and planted due to its weight. Tiago’s engine is clamed to give an average fuel efficiency of 20kmpl.
The other engine option is a 1.05-litre (1047cc) 3 cylinder ‘revotorq’ power-mill coupled with a 5 gear manual transmission. It delivers 69 bhp@4000rpm and 140Nm of torque between 1800-3000rpm. It has a top speed of 150kmph.
Comparatively, after driving both the options, the diesel version felt more nimble that allowed us to have some fun.
Ride and Handling
The ride quality and handling of the Tiago did impress us and is different from the previous product portfolio of Tata. Particularly what drew us in favor were the gearshifts that felt very smooth when compared to earlier models. Even the Tiago is able to hold the gearshift tall which was not the case before. Refinement level of the engine is good as NVH level has been well taken care of. The engine response to throttle is quick and hence being behind the wheel the car feels maneuverable. Even the engine noise is audible after 2400rpm mark and the cabin is well insulated as it restricts road noise being intrusive.
While steering and cornering, the response from the car is accurate plus the vehicle undergoes minimum body-roll due to its heavy weight. Hence, you don’t bobble much around the car. At low speeds, the car absorbs the bumps and potholes quite well giving you a very comfortable ride. All that being said, the car under-steers at high speeds and it takes a while to clock triple digit speed as well.
How Safe it is
In Tiago, Tata offers a surety to keep the occupants safe as it does impress with in-trend safety features. The top-end variants of the Tata Tiago come equipped with Anti-Lock Braking system (ABS), Electronic Brake Force System (EBD) and dual front airbags. The car rests on 14” alloy wheel with disc breaks in the front tires and drum breaks in the back tires for an advanced grip on the road.
Tiago could be Tata’s winning formula that would mark the company’s re-entry into the automobile market. It gives its competitors a run for their money by showcasing a powerful engine and efficient fuel efficiency. Though in city, drivability is a bit lazy. Tiago Backed by Tata’s trust is a pretty good option for people looking for mid-sized hatchback at a very competitive price of Rs.3.20 lakhs.