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Tata Motors Nexon
    Change Model
Customer Rating
: 4/5
Expert Rating
: 7/10
Warranty
: N/A (Whichever is earlier)
Ex-showroom price in 
Delhi
 help (Rs.Lakhs)
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6.58 Lakhs-10.9 Lakhs

Strong Areas

  • Feature Loaded.
  • Awesome Looks.
  • Plush and Premium Interiors.
  • India's First Turbo Petrol Engine.
  • Compact SUV with Coupe Look & Feel.

Weak Areas

  • Looks Small.
  • Sluggish Petrol Engine.
Tata Motors Nexon
 
 

Tata’s Stylish Entry into Compact SUV Zone Nexon Review

An elaborately designed compact utility vehicle, Tata Nexon has a good balance of style and performance. The diesel model is particularly good. 


Author

By

ecardlr.com National

The company that had been hitherto bringing only full sized UVs to the market has launched its compact SUV to the segment that has grown substantially in the last 5 years. Tata Nexon comes to compete with Maruti Vitara Brezza (already leading the segment), Ford Eco Sport, Hyundai i20 Active and Mahindra TUV 300.


        Tata’s Stylish Entry into Compact SUV Zone Nexon Review
 

Tata Motors had showcased the Nexon concept at Auto Expo 2014 and two years later they brought the production version to the next Auto Expo. The car got launched in the festive season of 2017. The factors – design, value for money pricing, and features – that made Tiago successful have also been applied here.


          Tata Nexon Projector Headlamp
 

The Nexon uses the same X1 platform on which Zest and Bolt are based. Reportedly, Tata Motors is also working on a new modular platform that will underpin its cars in future but this one shares its base with the recently launched siblings.

Powering this compact SUV are:

  • 1.2 litre Petrol engine that churns out 108 BHP at 5000 rpm and 170 Nm torque at 1750-4000 rpm
  • 1.5 litre Diesel engine that churns out 108 BHP at 3750 rpm and 260 Nm of torque 1500-2750 rpm

Both of these are mated to 6 speed manual gearbox.

The External Impression

What differentiates Nexon from its rivals is its funky styling. It has a short front hood, prominently raked front windscreen, sloping roof-line and angled rear. The opinions on its design will be polarised but admittedly it stands out in the crowd.

The combination of black grille, chrome humanity line and swept back headlamps give its face a smiling appearance. The headlamp assembly comprises LED daytime running lights and low beam projector lights. A set of creases on the bonnet are placed parallel to the headlamps. The front bumper is curvy and air dam is large with horizontal slats.

        Tata Nexon Reverse Parking Assist

Chrome bezel fog lamps have neat black housings and they also work as cornering lamps – they light up in the direction of the steering wheel. There is a U shaped ceramic white inlay on the lower edge of the housings.

Nexon measures 3994 mm in length which is comparable to Brezza, WR-V and Eco Sport. The wheelbase of 2498 mm is less than competitors’. It has a width of 1811 mm making it wider than all three. The ground clearance of 209 mm is segment leading. Nexon’s kerb weight of 1305 kg (diesel model) makes it pretty heavy as a compact SUV.

         Nexon Large 16 Inch Alloy Wheels with Class Leading

The side profile shows some elaborate styling. Wheel arches are flared and black cladding is similar to other cars in this category. It gives these compact SUVs their beefy look. A distinct element here is the ceramic white lining around the windows and on the broad C pillar.

A prominent character line runs through the doors going all the way back to the tailgate. The outside rear view mirrors (ORVMs) have integrated blinkers. Black and silver roof rails enhance the SUV look. Nexon gets 16 inch alloy wheels with 215/60 tyres. The lower trims also have 16 inch wheels albeit the tyre size is 195/60.

The rear design for Nexon is also elaborate. The same ceramic white line that surrounds the fog lamps and windows runs across the tailgate in an X pattern and in its middle is the Tata logo. Although the windscreen is wide, it is not very tall and that will restrict visibility. It has a small wiper and the washer is placed on its spindle. The windscreen gets a roof mounted spoiler.
Tata Nexon Flexi Seating
On the large bumper there is a black insert with reflectors on its sides. With different colours at the rear – body colour/ ceramic white / piano black / grey - and several cuts and creases, the rear end of Nexon grabs attention and makes it stand out from all its rivals. What we liked is that the use of chrome is limited.

The Interior

Front doors open in triple stage action. Ingress is not effortless as you need to bend down and climb into the car. The elderly may have a problem. However once you are inside Nexon’s cabin there is plenty of legroom and headroom.

The cabin has a black and beige theme with silver, black and chrome inserts highlighting different spots on the dashboard, centre console and door pads. The roof lining and pillars are in greyish-white and the cabin feels bright with the sloping windscreen letting in plenty of light.

        Tata Nexon Layered Three Tone Dashboard
 

In a simple and functional design set up, the centre of the dashboard is occupied by the 6.5 inch touchscreen of Harman developed ConnectNext infotainment system. It just out from the top, right above the centre AC vents. Features include general music inputs – USB, Aux, Bluetooth along with voice recognition, on-screen SMS display + readout, parking camera display and image + video playback. It has integrated Android Auto but Apple CarPlay is not yet provided. For those who prefer old-school buttons to touchscreen, alternative controls are given below the AC vents.

A plastic cap covers the upper part of the instrument console and the dials inside have easily readable white lettering. As in some other new Tata cars, the tachometer needle becomes red when it approaches the redline. Temperature gauge is provided.

With black upholstery, the front seats are comfortable and offer adequate lateral, under-thigh support. Headrests are also adjustable and soft. The lever provided to adjust height is sturdy. Height adjustment range and travel range for the driver’s seat is adequate. Seat belts are also height adjustable. Down in the footwell a dead pedal is provided.

        Tata Nexon Floating Dashtop Touchscreen Infotainment
 

The rearward visibility is restricted by very thick C pillars. On a positive note the ORVMs are decently sized and Nexon comes with reversing camera + 4 parking sensors.

The medium sized glove box has a tray on the top to hold a book. It can also be detached to place other items inside. The glove box lid is also sculpted for a card holder, pen holder, purse holder and has two cup holders. There is tiger design carved on the lid. Other storage spaces for knick knacks include door pockets, the compartment underneath the centre armrest and a cubby hole in front of the gear stick.

         Tata Nexon Dual Frontal Airbag Standard

For the rear part of the cabin the doors open and close in three stage action. Again ingress and egress need some effort but the seat is positioned at a good height. The door pockets are not as spacious as for the front doors but they can hold in a 1 litre bottle and some small things.

The bench seat is shaped ergonomically and has a contoured seat-base and seat back. The space feels adequate for three adults even though only two headrests are provided. Passenger sitting in the middle gets a lap belt and the ones on sides have usual 3 point seatbelts. With scooped out seat backs of the front seats, the knee room is also good. On the wide centre armrest there are 2 cup holders.

         Tata Nexon 6 Automatic Climate Control

Nexon does carry on the repute of Tata Motors with regards to cabin comfort provided in their cars. Plenty of light comes inside through the rear windows. The rear window glass does not go in fully – about an inch of it is exposed towards the front. Rear seat occupants get a piano black coloured separate blower but not really an AC unit.

This compact SUV has a 350 litre boot which is bigger than that of Brezza and Eco Sport. Because of the split tail lamps the opening is wide and loading lip is not high – this makes it easy to load and unload luggage.

Engine, Transmission and Performance 

1.5 litre Diesel

The diesel model of Nexon is powered by 1497 cc, 4 cylinder turbocharged engine that hails from the Revotorq family and is built at Tata’s Ranjangaon (Maharashtra) facility. It generates 108 BHP @ 3,750 rpm and 260 Nm of torque @ 1,500-2,750 rpm. These power and torque specs take Nexon diesel to the top of its segment. But the kerb weight of 1305 kg makes this Tata heavier than the rivals. 
Revotron-Petrol-Engine
As in the petrol, the diesel too has three drive modes – City (usual mode), Eco and Sport. The engine is coupled with 6 speed manual gearbox.

On starting the engine, there are noticeable vibrations and at idling these are felt through steering and pedals. Although it has the diesel clatter on the outside, there is not much noise inside the cabin. Power delivery is linear and with the tractable nature of engine, you can even take off in the second gear.

Nexon diesel offers a city-friendly driving experience. You can go at 50 km/hour in 4th gear with the tachometer reading at 1600 rpm. It is easy to keep up with the city traffic and frequent downshifts are not needed. The turbo lag below 1600 rpm is not excessive. With linear power delivery there is no sudden spike as the turbo spools.

The performance is enthusiastic at 2000 rpm. It is not necessary to downshift for overtaking. The engine can be revved up to 4600 rpm but we won’t suggest that because the noise levels increase after 3000 rpm and there is not much progress. You can cruise at 100 km/hour in 6th gear with the rpm needle hovering around 2000 rpm.

Apart from the default City mode, you can choose between Eco and Sport modes. As expected, the throttle response is slower in the Eco mode where the engine gulps less fuel as compared to other two modes. But this is usable for city driving. You will need to come out of it only for overtaking attempts.
revotorq Diesel Engine
Switching to the Sport mode makes the react more sharply to throttle inputs. The difference can be felt with a slight push on the A pedal. But this mode is not recommended for urban conditions as it can make your ride jerky amidst traffic. The Sport mode is exclusively for open roads. The peak torque of 260 Nm can also be utilised here.

Nexon diesel has a light clutch and it does not have a long travel range but its feel is not very admirable and action can be little jerky. The 6 speed manual transmission has tad rubbery feel but is sure slotting. The throws are longer than in Honda WR-V.

Although the engine noise for cabin occupants is well controlled at idling and normal driving, the acceleration makes the unit audible. Over 3000 rpm it starts getting noisy and can be unpleasant after that. On a positive note, the wind noise is well curtailed and suspension works silently.

Nexon diesel has an ARAI rated fuel efficiency of 21.5 km/litre. Segment leader here is the WR-V with 25 km/litre but the weight of Nexon is a factor lowering the FE.

Ride and Handling

Tata Nexon gets independent McPherson strut dual-path suspension for front and a twist beam for rear. Ride quality of Tata’s cars have always been appreciated but in the Nexon the ride comfort has been traded for a sportier setup – this has made the suspension stiff.

At slow speed on not very smooth roads, the ride feels wiggly. The occupants stay aware of the surface and bigger potholes are felt inside. The ride quality is however better than in Eco Sport. With increase in speed, the ride gets better and broken tarmac is dealt with more efficiently. Only the larger bumps filter into the cabin.

The tyres have good grip levels. There is some body roll and the heftiness of this UV is felt around the corners but is not unnerving. Straight-line stability is good and the dynamics are safe. The electric power steering is nice to use. It has small diameter and is convenient for commuting in city. The unit is light at city speeds and weighs up adequately with increase in speed.

Nexon has disc brakes for the front and drums at rear. They are optimised by ABS and EBD. You may feel that initial brake bit is missing but the action is progressive and they do the job of stopping the vehicle well. The Nexon can stop without drama from high speed.

Verdict

The competitively set price for Nexon starts at Rs 5.85 lakh and goes up to 9.45 lakh (ex showroom Delhi). This makes Tata’s compact SUV a good value for money proposition. Its stylish design makes it distinct and the solid build is another positive. The diesel engine is performance oriented and on-road behaviour is also satisfactory. What may go against it is the overdone design that may not be to everyone’s liking, the jiggly low speed ride and service experience with Tata cars that is still way behind Maruti and Hyundai.

We recommend the Nexon for those who are looking for a stylish compact UV with performance traits and a spacious cabin for family trips.

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