Tata Tiago Facelift Review & First Drive

Tata Tiago Test DriveTata Tiago Overview

Hatchbacks have always been a popular car architecture, especially in the Indian market. Being affordable to buy, cheap to maintain, and easy to drive around, hatchbacks are the most preferred medium of transport for small families. The Indian market has already been flooded with plenty of cars in this particular segment, coming from different auto manufacturers around the world. But our homegrown car maker Tata Motors has gone under the dust in the past few years. The hatchback segment was once stirred by Tata when it launched the original Indica, back in 1998. But with increasing competition, the company just couldn’t keep up to satisfy the customer’s changing needs and priorities.

Come year 2014, and we saw an aggressive marketing strategy from Tata when they launched the Bolt hatch, which was a significantly improved product in almost all fields. The Bolt was developed with cumulative inputs from Tata’s Research and Design centres located in UK, Italy and Pune. But owing to its egg-like structure, the Bolt was perceived to be a redressed Indica. This, along with the fact that Tata bluntly priced it too close to the Maruti Swift, was the primary reason behind the Tata Bolt’s limited sales run. Check for HDFC car loan.

But when Tata took the veils off their all-new hatch in late 2015, we Indians were in for a surprise. Yes, there was already news of Tata developing an all-new product, but none of us knew that the Indian manufacturer would finally say goodbye to its favorite Indica-like design philosophy. And farewell is what Tata actually did! The Tiago surprised everyone with its fresh new looks, and people started waiting for this new Tata hatchback with baited breath.

Initially called the Zica, this new hatchback was soon renamed to Tiago, after the infamous deadly Zika virus breakout. Just like its name, the Tiago hatchback definitely has a sporty and dynamic appearance. What is even more interesting is the fact that Tata used its new ‘IMPACT’ design language to design and fabricate the Tiago. In addition to a refreshing design theme, the Tiago also promises to deliver enhanced driving dynamics along with new innovative features.

Tata Tiago Style

The Tiago bears no resemblance to any other Tata product, which in our books, is a very good thing to begin with. The Bolt and the Vista were plagued by the ‘Indica lookalike’ tag which didn’t go down well with the masses. The hatchback follows Tata’s ‘Impact’ philosophy, just like it’s elder siblings, the Zest and the Bolt. It looks fresh, contemporary and modern. It is amongst the widest cars in the segment at 1647mm, second to only the Grand i10. It has a shorter wheelbase than the Celerio, in spite of being a full 146mm longer. However, it is the heaviest car in the segment by a considerable margin. For more details on Tiago  visit Aryavarta

The front profile is home to a pair of swept back, smoked headlamps. Joining the headlamps is a curved strip of chrome that Tata calls the ‘humanity line’.The grille harbours a three-dimensional Tata logo and hexagon detailing that become smaller as they spread out towards the headlamps. The air dam is sleek and is peppered with some more hexagons. The fog lamps are placed at either end of the air dam and get a chrome surround as well. The subtle creases on the bumper complement the ones on the bonnet, thereby lending the Tiago a confident face

We particularly like the sharp character line that runs across the side of the car and finishes into the wrap around tail lamp. As is the norm in the segment, the Tiago gets blacked out B-pillars and indicators on the wing mirror as well.The side shows off the low-slung stance of the car beautifully, with the 14-inch alloys filling the wheel well. However, the design of the alloy itself is a bit of a letdown. In comparison, the diamond cut wheels on the Grand i10 look truly a class above.

The rear profile is clean and minimalistic. The almond-shaped tail lamps and the faint character lines connecting the two look really classy. It also gets an integrated spoiler that houses a high mounted stop lamp.However, the things that drew our attention remain the gloss black spoiler spats that are placed on either end of the integrated spoiler. Tata says that it not only looks cool but also aids aerodynamics. The matte-black finish around the number plate area helps break the monotony of colour at the rear. Notably, the exhaust is neatly tucked away from view. Boot space stands at 240-litres, which is on par with the Celerio for all practical purposes and is slightly smaller than that of the Grand i10.We will go out on a limb and say that the Tiago is the best designed Tata till date. The proportions, the sharp lines and attention to detail are praiseworthy.

Tata Tiago Space

The interiors seem to be the biggest surprise Tata has given. The cabin is not only well finished but nicely designed and spacious as well. This makes us think that Tata has really upped the game in the small hatchback class. Right from seat fabric options to the knitted roof lining, everything has been a well thought processed. The dashboard features a soft touch dual tone theme and with uniquely textured interiors and gloss black center console lends the car an upmarket feel.

In terms of feature list and equipment level, yes, Tata has given a lot in this car. The top models feature Bluetooth enabled Harman infotainment system with a USB and Aux-In slot. The music system is powered by 8-speakers and the output is amazing. And despite not a touchscreen high tech infotainment, Tata has added a wonderful feature ‘MapMyIndia’ app for displaying visuals and streaming navigation data right on the infotainment screen. The car also gets four parking sensors.

The two-pod instrument cluster with a crisp display is draped in simple brushed silver colour. The multi-information display gives info on trip distance, average fuel consumption, time and distance to empty. The center console features a pair of AC vents, music system and controls for AC. Another wonderful addition is the Juke Car App which allows simultaneous connection to 10 smartphones via WiFi hotspot. The car beside featuring a cooled glove box has a lot of storage space including 22 cubbyholes, space near the gear lever and pockets on all 4-doors. Other features include keyless entry, height adjustable driver’s seat, EPAS system and heater. Overall, this car has the right amount of features one can expect at this price point.

Tata Tiago Engine

Petrol

The Tiago not only brings good looks and premium interiors to the table, but it also promises a zippy ride from its newly developed Revotron 1.2 Litre petrol unit which promises to deliver around 85 PS of peak power at 6000 rpm and 114 Nm of torque at 3500 rpm. While it looks sufficiently powered on papers, real-world performance can not be termed as enthusiastic. Off-the line acceleration is a bit lethargic, but the engine comes to its own once the rpm needle climbs.

The 5-speed gearbox too is a joy to use, and has been aptly tuned to enhance driveability as well as performance. It has been placed at an ergonomic location, and thus falls to hand perfectly. Short and crisp throws ensure that enthusiastic drivers will have a grin on their face every time they slot down a gear.

What is even more interesting is the fact that the Tiago gets the segment’s first Multi drive mode, which includes City and Eco modes to ensure an improved fuel economy as well as superior and fun filled driving experience. The petrol engine promises to return an ARAI rated fuel efficiency of 23.84 kpl.

Diesel

The diesel variant on the other hand gets a Revotorq 1.05 Litre, 3 cylinder unit which is capable of delivering around 70 Ps of peak power at 4000 rpm and an impressive 139 Nm of torque at 1800-3000 rpm. This diesel mill is also equipped with a small turbocharger from Honeywell, that is tuned to enhance city driveability as well as fuel economy. In terms of real-world performance, the diesel mill too wont disappoint anyone, as it has a well-distributed spectrum of power across its rev range.

The new drivetrain comes loaded with technologies like duel overhead camshafts, central injectors and low friction crank train which helps in delivering an impressive fuel efficiency figure. Just like the petrol, the diesel unit too has been paired to a 5 speed manual gearbox. The Tiago diesel promises to return an ARAI certified fuel efficiency of 27.28kpl.

Tata Tiago Driving

The steering is just as light as one would like it at city speeds. Going lock to lock isn’t a task at all, making the Tiago a nippy little hatch inside the city. Parking in tight spots or making a quick u-turn is fairly easy thanks to the light steering. At highway speeds, it weighs up sufficiently. It isn’t vague when shoved into a corner and doesn’t feel as light or twitchy like the Grand i10.

The suspension strikes a fair balance between ride and handling. While it is on the firmer side, it doesn’t thud over broken roads or potholes. The suspension setup is better on the petrol Tiago compared to the diesel. Since the diesel engine weighs an extra 20 kilos, Tata has used stiffer front springs and dampers to account for it. Ride quality is acceptable for most parts, and at highway speeds, it does ride relatively flat. It does not bounce around like the Hyundai. The added weight comes in handy here, as the car feels planted at high speeds.

Tata Tiago Safety

Tata has played smart here as well. The brakes are sourced from Bosch with 9th generation ABS and EBD. The braking power is progressive after a little rev. Further, the safety kit includes dual front airbags, corner stability control, central locking, seat-belt pre-tensioners, speed sensing auto door lock, engine immobilizer and rear parking sensors.

Tata Tiago Cost in Pune

Tata Tiago On-Road Price in Pune ranges from 5,04,078 to 7,44,220 for variants Tiago Revotron XE and Tiago Revotorq XZ respectively. Tata Tiago is available in 20 variants and 6 colours. Below are details of Tata Tiago variants price in Pune. check for Tiago price in Pune at Autozhop.

Tata Tiago Conclusion

The Tata Tiago is positioned in between their entry level hatchback Nano and the Bolt and this is quite aggressively priced as well. The Tiago is also backed by city friendly as well as fuel efficient drivetrains but what sets it apart from the rest is the fact that it gets a newly designed exterior, newer platform for better handling, and spacious interior and offcourse a diesel engine option under its hood along with the petrol engine option as well.

The Tata Tiago may not be an exceptional looking hatchback but it surely has enough juice to keep those customers happy who are searching for an alternative other than the Celerio or the i10.

In our opinion, the Tiago makes perfect sense for anyone and everyone entering this segment. The only factor that might stop people from deciding on the Tiago is the word that precedes its moniker – Tata. We just hope Tata Motors provides satisfactory after sales support from now, in order to break away with the perception of it being a poor-quality brand.

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