What is it?
Tata‘s fresh-new compact hatchback for the highly competitive lower-B segment. The new Tata Tiago, which was earlier known as the Tata Zica, which was known simply as the ‘Kite‘ during a large part of its pre-production life, will find itself slotted between the highly popular Indica eV2 and the ‘so far unsuccessful’ Bolt, and will be seen locking horns with the likes of Hyundai Grand i10, Honda Brio and the Maruti Suzuki Celerio. We drove the Zica, nay, the Tiago in the picturesque town of Goa and here, in this Tata Tiago test drive review, we try to answer all your questions on this hot new car from Tata Motors.
Tata Tiago Video Review (English)
Looks Good. . No?
Yes, the new Tata Tiago (Zica) impresses with its exterior design! Its front-end is characterized by a pair of stylish, swept-back headlamps, which are bridged together by a wide, sleek front grille that features the new TATA logo and some chrome applique. You also get a neatly sculpted bumper that gets a rather wide air-dam, and fog-lamp enclosures sprinkled with some more chrome. The most well-executed element, however, has to be the clamshell hood, which adds some weight to this car’s front-end design and makes it look sufficiently matured.
In side-profile too, the Tiago (Zica) looks nothing like anything we’ve ever seen from Tata Motors. The highlights here is a bold belt-line, and a rather discreet crease on the C-Pillar. We believe that this surface treatment should enable an almost seamless integration of a boot on the Kite 5 (Zica Compact Sedan). Other styling highlights here are stylish ORVMs that feature turn-indicators, blacked-out B Pillars, and an unfortunately boring set of alloy rims.
It is the Tiago’s rear-end design that leaves us with mixed emotions. Don’t get us wrong, for we do appreciate the neat-looking posterior, but it is the uncanny resemblance to the new Ford Figo and the Hyundai Grand i10 that robs off some freshness. Among the highlights here are swept-back taillamps, a neatly sculpted boot-lid, and a chunky rear-bumper that adds some sportiness to the overall design.
Also See – Tata Tiago Aktiv
On the Inside?
The interior of the Tiago (Zica), much like its exterior, is aesthetically pleasing. You get a stylish dashboard that comes with two-tone beige-and-black color theme, and you’ll be quick to notice that the steering wheel has been borrowed from the Zest. Adding some zing to the cabin are chrome-plated door handles, a sporty speedo console, and body-color accents around the front aircon-vents. The cabin is adequately spacious, and while one might miss the Indica-like rear legroom, the well-bolstered seats offer a high level of comfort. You also get roughly 250-litres of boot-space, which, while not being exceptionally high, stands at par with most of its rivals.
While the Hyundai Grand i10 takes the cake for offering the most comfort & convenience features, the new Zica comes at a close second, with features like electric-adjustment for ORVMs, steering-mounted audio controls, and a Harman-sourced 8-speaker infotainment system with telephony and basic sat-nav features making this car sufficiently feature-laden. However, we would still want to have features like a reverse-parking camera, and a cooled glove-box on the top-end XZ trim.
Tata Tiago Test Drive Review (Hindi)
What’s Under the Hood?
Powering the Tata Tiago are a set of all-new engines that are high on both power and fuel economy. The petrol variant is powered by a 1.2-litre, three-cylinder Revotron engine that outputs a max. power of 85 bhp and a peak torque of 114 Nm. The engine comes mated to a smooth-shifting 5-speed manual transmission and our guess is that the oficial fuel mileage, when announced, would be upwards of 20 kms to a litre. The Diesel variant also gets an all-new motor, which, by the way, marks the debut of the RevoTorq family of oil burners. Tiago’s Diesel motor displaces 1.05-litre and akin to its petrol sibling, is a three-cylinder unit. This engine too comes mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox and the car has a peak power-torque of 69 bhp-140 Nm. Both the motors could get an automated manual transmission (AMT) at a later stage, but, for now, they’ll have to make do with the manual unit.
The petrol motor has a good spread of torque across most of the rev range and we found ourselves effortlessly carrying speeds of 40-50 km/h in the fifth cog. Speaking of the gearbox, this has to be by far the slickest unit we’ve ever used on a Tata car. The gear ratios are well spaced out too. The petrol-powered Tiago (Zica) can effortlessly cruise at speeds of 110-120 km/h on the expressway, but it rapidly starts running out of steam post, say, 140 km/h. The new 1.2-litre Revotron has to be among the most polished low capacity petrol motors from Tata so far, but a small clinch in the armor is the fact that it doesn’t rev as freely or sound as healthy as Hyundai’s 1.2-litre Kappa motor.
Even the diesel engine, which is just a 1.0-litre three-cylinder unit, exhibits enough vigor to make the Zica a peppy performer. The turbo-lag is quite pronounced below 1200 RPM, but the engine gets pretty ‘zesty’ post 1500 RPM. Again, the gearbox impresses with its shift quality and the Diesel-powered Zica scores highly on tractability. While the top-end performance is rather ordinary, the drivers will love the Zica for the eagerness it shows in the low- and mid-range. The biggest blemish, however, is the slightly higher NVH levels.
Does it Offer a Comfortable Ride?
Tata cars have always been known to offer a good ride quality and the new Tiago is no different in this aspect. The car is pretty softly sprung and the occupants should love the way this car can simply glide over most of the potholes and speed humps that our roads are known to be pockmarked with. Yes, the bigger craters do threaten to unsettle this car to some extent, but on most occasions, the Zica exhibits a matured ride quality that is sure to be appreciated by its occupants. Even the high speed stability is pretty good for an entry-B-segment hatchback.
And Around a Corner?
The new Tata Tiago (Zica), much like all of its rivals, comes with an Electronic Power Steering (EPS) that offers little in terms of feedback. However, this car’s steering isn’t overtly light, and while this weight does feel artificially induced, the steering is pretty direct and the enthusiasts won’t be a hugely disappointed lot.
Should I Buy One?
Tata is yet to announce the price of the Tiago, and while we would be able to give our final word only after the Tata Tiago (Zica) hits the showroom space later this year, we can safely state that Tata seems to have got it really right with its all-new hatchback. It looks good, has a pleasant and a feature-laden interior, gets sufficiently potent and fuel efficient motors, and exhibits decent ride and quality manners too. True, it isn’t much fun to drive, but when was the last time you went on an apex hunting trip in your budget-end small car? The Tiago looks, feels, and drives exactly like a modern small car should and don’t be surprised to see this car replicating the success story of the Indica!
Tata Tiago Specifications
|Length x Width x Height
|1012kg (P)/1080 kg (D)
|Wheel Type and Size
|175/65 R14 alloy wheels
|Engine Type/ Displacement
|1.2 L Petrol/1.05 L Diesel
|85 PS/70 PS
|114 Nm/140 Nm
|Acceleration (0-100 km/h)
|Air Conditioner Type
|Steering Audio Controls
New Tata Tiago Price List
|INR 3.20 lacs
|INR 3.94 lacs
|INR 3.59 lacs
|INR 4.29 lacs
|INR 3.89 lacs
|INR 4.69 lacs
|INR 4.19 lacs
|INR 4.99 lacs
|INR 4.75 lacs
|INR 5.54 lacs
all prices ex-showroom, New Delhi
New Tata Tiago Photos
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