When the Tata Cars Nexon was first launched back in 2017, it took buyers by surprise with its unique SUV styling, almost making every other rival seen staid in comparison. It was a huge success for Tata Motors for various reasons, and for 2020, received an all-new face, some more features and even a fully-electric EV version. We take you into the details of the new model to help you better understand the new model.
There are a host of exterior changes, particularly at the front, that give it a far more aggressive and sporty look. It features a different grille, flanked by stylish headlamps and a restructured bumper that boasts of C-shaped surrounds placed below, along with an integrated bull bar and a faux scuff place that gives it a rugged look. Look at the lower intake, and you’ll notice tri-arrow patterns in the lower air intake. Even the bonnet has been redesigned to meet the new pedestrian norms. It is now higher up and flatter, which is what gave the design team the liberty to experiment with larger headlights. It gets white strips alongside the car, highlighting the up-sweeping character line, wrapping itself around the tail section. Giving it a sportier look are the black C-pillars – and if you move to rear, you’ll that ‘Nexon’ is now lettered in chrome across the tail gate. The tail lights too, get a revised cluster, giving it a somewhat similar look to the Union Jack. It also gets faux vents in the lower half of the rear bumper.
Engines on offer
The new Tata Nexon also gets an updated 1.2-litre, three-cylinder, turbocharged petrol engine that now produces 118bhp, after a few software and hardware revisions. It even features a new induction system, exhaust system, lowered friction levels and a tweaked turbo. The 1.5-litre diesel engine too, has received some updates to meet the new BS6 norms. Both motors can either be had with an AMT automatic or a 6-speed manual transmission.
Let’s look in..
Much of what’s found on the inside looks the same. The dashboard looks and feels well built; there’s also the free-standing screen in the middle, those neat chrome-lined vents, and the flush-fitting glovebox release button. What’s new, is the flat-bottomed steering, the tri-arrow patterns on the dashboard, and a digital LCD panel for the instrument cluster. So the speedometer has a digital readout along with LCD bars that reflect other functions. The quality has improved and the buttons work well. However, there are no cupholders here. There are also umbrella holders in the holders.
Comfort levels remain the same as well, thanks to the smartly carved out cabin room and its width. At the front, the wide seats are positioned nice and high, and there’s good room for front occupants. It now features a sunroof, and the new seats features the tri-arrow patterns as well. Stepping in would require you to bend your head a bit because of the sloping roofline. Legroom and headroom are never an issue, and the seat back is a reclined because of the sloping rear. It also features a huge rear AC vent and a 12-volt socket at the back. Boot space is a usable 350 litres.
New features include auto headlights, LED DRLs, a tyre pressure monitoring system, auto wipers, 8-speaker Harman audio system, Tata cars IRA connected car tech, roll-over mitigation and brake assist and ESP and traction control.
Performance for the course
The updated 1.2-litre, turbo petrol is small, but this is apparent only at idle. Give it some throttle, and the rocking motion disappears, and as the revs build, the engine smoothens out further. The engine sounds nice and higher revs. However, at low revs, the throttle response isn’t great but power delivery is better. With this new motor, Tata have focused more on frugality. The 6-speed ‘box isn’t particularly smooth, despite being light. And the clutch isn’t user-friendly. Some turbo lag can be felt, but once past 2,000rpm, performance begins to shine through, particularly in the mid-range. While Eco mode is best for city use, it’s Sport mode that feels more engaging.
Behind the wheel
The Nexon gobbles up bad roads with aplomb, and stability is fantastic, thanks to the tall, stiff springs. However, you do feel the worst of ruts filter into the cabin, particularly at low speeds. Pick up speeds, and the Nexon is sure to flatten out the irregular stuff. Also, grab the latest info on the Kia Sonet, only at autoX.