Tata Motors Tiago
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Customer Rating
: 4/5
Expert Rating
: 7/10
: N/A (Whichever is earlier)
Ex-showroom price in 
 help (Rs.Lakhs)
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4.21 Lakhs-6.7 Lakhs

Strong Areas

  • Stylish Demeanour
  • Good Quality Interiors 
  • High Fuel-Efficiency 
  • Spacious Interiors

Weak Areas

  • Lack Comfort Features 
  • Small Boot
  • Inefficient HVAC
  • Lack Appeal Of Rivals 
Tata Motors Tiago

Tata Tiago Enters the Budget Hatchback Zone

Formerly known as the Zica, the Tiago is Tata’s answer to Maruti Celerio and Hyundai Grand i10. Inspired by Tata’s new Horizonext strategy, this budget hatchback is well styled and carries sufficient features for the price segment it sits in. The ride quality too is commendable.



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The launch of Indica was a milestone in Tata Motors offerings for India and the hatchback particularly in its diesel model was hugely accepted here - by both private and commercial owners. But the company’s poor quality and reliability also surfaced and the incompetent support network made things worse. When all other manufacturers including Maruti forayed into the diesel territory, Tata lost the USP that was established by its diesel engine efficiency, cabin space and reasonable pricing.
A change ushered when Karl Slym brought the Horizonext strategy for the company. We saw fresh styles in Zest and Bolt but the sales did not pick up and Tata continued to remain behind Maruti and Hyundai. The latest to come from the Indian car maker is another budget hatchback positioned between the Nano and the Bolt. It was called the Zica (abbreviated for Zippy-Car) but after the spread of a virus with a similar name, Tata Motors invited consumers for new name suggestions and finally selected ‘Tiago’. 
Tata Tiago entered the market with options of petrol and diesel engines. Its closest rivals are Maruti Celerio, Alto K10, Hyundai Eon, Grand i10 and Mahindra KUV100. 

1.2 litre petrol Revotron engine is rated with 84 bhp at 6000 rpm and 11.62 kgm torque at 3500 rpm 

1.0 litre diesel Revotorq engine is rated with 69 bhp at 4000 rpm and 14.27 kgm torque at 1800-3000 rpm 

The Outside Impression 

Tiago does have a refreshingly new design although the smiling grille with body coloured strip on its top is reminiscent of the new family look. The grille has a honeycomb pattern. There is a 3D Tata logo placed on it. With thick chrome accents, the headlamps carry enough lure. Fog lamps too have chrome surrounds. Hexagonal detailing adorns the edge of bonnet and windshield.

The character lines on the body panels work well for Tiago’s profile look. Outside rear view mirrors (ORVMs) carry LED blinkers. Door handles have a sharp design. Tiago’s silhouette appears more proportionate than Indica Vista’s. This car gets 14 inch alloy wheels with 175/65 R14 tyres. 

Tiago has a length of 3746 mm, width of 1647 mm and height of 1535 mm. Its wheelbase spans 2400 mm. This again is comparable to Indica’s wheelbase. Tiago is taller than Grand i10 by 10 mm but in terms of other dimensions it is smaller than the Hyundai.

On the tailgate, this car gets an integrated spoiler and there are thick spoiler extensions on the sides. There is no sign of the engine type anywhere. As the tailgate gets only the brand name at left and variant name at right, it looks rather clutter-free. Give the tail lamps a closer look and you will see honeycomb detailing on them too.



Although the gleam that adorns Bolt and Zest is not seen on this small car, the paint work quality is acceptable for the segment. Its build is also fine and panels do not feel hollow. The designers have also worked well for consistency of the panel gaps except around the hood and tail gate.

Cabin Conspectus 

Front Interiors 

The low stance of Tiago make ingress and egress a little more difficult than Ritz and Wagon R but its doors open wide and that does help. Also, the doors close with a reassuring sound (not the thud as in European cars but good enough for a hatch this size).


In the cabin Tata too, like some other car makers, has now chosen a black and grey combination instead of beige. Dashboard sports an attractive and simple design. The parts shared with other Tata are easy to identify – gear lever, control stalks, steering wheel and the window buttons. The designers have applied chrome and shiny black finish in quite a few parts to make the cabin feel more appealing.


The quality of materials also catches attention. The upper half of the dash and doorpad feel premium and the texture pattern is elegant. The fit and finish is still behind Hyundai but evidently Tata has made efforts to offer the buyers a good value for their money. Sunvisors on either side get a vanity mirror each and to the left of the centre console is a luggage hook.

A nifty feature is that the MID tells you which door is left open. Lane changing indicators, illuminated power window buttons on all doors and white LED centrally located reading lamp are minor features but they make the cabin pleasant.  The 8 speaker Harman entertainment system has pleasing sound quality. 

You can adjust the driver’s seat for height but the front passenger’s seat is fixed at the highest level. Seats do feel comfortable although 6 footers may find the thigh support to be inadequate. Also, the seat cushion is on softer side and the way an occupant feels sinking into them may feel little uncomfortable for longer journey. Headrests are adjustable. 


The steering wheel taken from Bolt is rake adjustable and thanks to the adjustable driving seat, it is easy to get into an ergonomic driving stance. Frontal visibility is also good. Rearward visibility is at par with competitors and there are parking sensors with XT and XZ variants. 

Tiago has plenty of cubby holes for storage. There are bottle holders on all doors and you can place your mobile phone in space below the USB and Aux ports. There is a deep storage space scooped out behind the handbrake too. Glove compartment is also voluminous and is segmented. The dashboard has a flat area above the centre console and this is where small statutes of Gods and Goddesses can be placed.

Rear Interiors 

Rear doors also open wide but you will need to bend a little to get in. The rear bench seat in this car is not flat – it’s contoured. While Tata’s cars are known for their back seat comfort but Tiago is a small one and its width is less than Grand i10 so three people may not be very comfortable sitting shoulder-to-shoulder. Also, the floor hump is high and so the occupant in the middle will have to place their legs on its sides. That said, the seat comfort is satisfactory.



Tiago’s boot has capacity of 242 litres and this is appreciably larger than that in Bolt but smaller than in Grand i10. The way it has been sculpted makes it more practical to use. Extra luggage can be kept by folding the rear seat flat – it is not a 60:40 divide. 

Engine, Transmission and Performance 

The Petrol and Diesel engines of Tiago have Multi-Drive feature. You can choose between City and Eco driving modes. City mode is set as default and the Eco has to be manually selected for fuel efficiency. The latter is for sedate driving conditions and dulls the drive down by up to 30%.  Tata’s new cars in upper price segments - Bolt and Zest - also have a Sport mode for peppy performance. 

The Revotron 1.2L Petrol:

Start the engine and the fact that it is a three cylinder unit becomes evident soon. At idling, the vibrations can even be felt on seat, gear lever, steering wheel and the pedals. 

While the power to weight and torque to weight ratios of Tiago are comparable to Celerio, it does not feel energetic to drive in the city. It feels rather relaxed. You can certainly drive around in a high gear and there is no need to downshift frequently. But in stop and go traffic, the Tiago calls for effort to be driven smoothly. Carefully manage the clutch and gear to avoid jolts. 

On the highways, the 1.2 litre engine is fairly rev-happy but it also gets more audible inside the cabin as the tachometer needle climbs. In the 1st gear you can go up to 50 km/hour and in 2nd up to 88 km/hour. The performance is at par with Celerio. 100 km/hour in 5th gear comes at 2800 rpm. You will need to plan and downshift for overtaking attempts. With passengers and luggage in cabin, highway performance will be below what’s mentioned here. 

It is the NVH factor that becomes a downer but you can’t expect a lot on this front from a three cylinder engine car and the vibrations felt inside the cabin are still less than the actual vibrations that this little engine has under the hood. The wind noise seeps in from A and B pillar at 80 km/hour. 

For low cost of ownership and maintenance, the petrol engine gets hydraulic lash adjusters, a chain drive and an auto tensioner at the front end Accessory Drive (it enhances the life of the complete system and minimizes frictional losses). 

The Revotorq 1.0L diesel

Tata Motors has showcased this engine earlier in 2012 with Manza Hybrid and it has undergone changes since then. 

Driving the diesel version of Tiago is pleasantly surprising – as you start the engine, it feels more refined than the petrol unit. While the vibrations are felt across the cabin they do not tend to be disturbing. At idling, the 1047 cc diesel engine is less lumpy than the 1199 cc petrol. 

Tiago Diesel starts off smoothly and it can pick up speed soon. Work on tuning of the engine draws praise. There is practically zero turbo lag and rambling in the city in a higher gear and at low speed is feasible. The diesel powered car is admiringly driveable and is good for daily commuting in the city. A spike is felt after 2100 rpm but power delivery is linear. The engine reaches its peak at about 3800 rpm after which it starts to peter out. 

Speed of 100 km/hour comes at 2500 rpm in the 5th gear. Overtaking manoeuvres need to be planned again as in the petrol. The third gear maxes out at speed of 100 km/hour.

Diesel clatter continues to be less at higher speeds – while it feels vocal outside but there is nothing that really disturbs inside the cabin. The company has used a sound suppressing sump for better insulation of noise. Wind noise is about the same as petrol.

Both the engines - petrol & diesel - for this car have hydraulic lash adjusters. It implies that the tappets are hydraulically regulated for automatic maintenance of valve clearance. You will not have to get the valve clearance adjusted manually during routine services. The petrol engine also gets an offset crankshaft i.e. crankshaft is somewhat offset to the axis of the pistons.

The Gearbox 

Both the models have the same 5 speed manual gearbox. Clutch is light and this is good for stop and go traffic in cities. It has a short travel range. A dead pedal has also been provided. 

Due to more or torque, the clutch for diesel model has a different (better) feel than the petrol one. The throws of gearbox are not long and the shifts are smooth. It is not always sure-slotting though and there may be a tendency to mis-shift between the second and third gear. But overall the transmission is good for a small budget car. 

Ride and Handling 

In terms of ride quality, Tata’s cars have been admired so far. The same holds true for Tiago. It can glide over broken tarmac and goes over small potholes with a silent thud. The larger ones are felt inside the cabin but passengers don’t really get tossed around. There is hardly any vertical movement on rough patches.

Tiago gets an independent front suspension and semi-independent rear setup comprising twist beam with dual path struts. Due to this there are 2 separate paths for energy to be transmitted from the springs and dampers resulting in tuning for better ride and handling. 

At higher speeds the diesel Tiago feels more stable than the petrol one. It holds on to its line and there is no under-steer. Straight-line stability is also fine and on the whole the dynamics are conservative and safe. It’s at par with the competitors. 

Power steering has a diameter of 360 mm and it is convenient to use in traffic. It is light to use in the city and weighs up well with increase in speed on the highways. The steering of the diesel car feels firmer but the petrol one despite being feather light also gives you sufficient feedback for the front wheels. It has a turning radius of 4.9 meters. 

The brakes come with Bosch’s 9th generation ABS+EBD. There is some initial lack of bite but the action is satisfactory. Tiago’s brakes also have cornering stability control too. 

For safety, dual airbags are optional in XE, XM and XT variants. They are standard in top-end XZ.

Fuel Efficiency 

The fuel tank capacity is 35 litres. ARAI rated fuel economy for Petrol Tiago is 23.84 km per litre and for Diesel it is 27.28 km per litre. Eco mode can be selected for consistent fuel efficiency. In regular driving conditions you will need to use the City mode. 


As a car in the price segment of Rs. 3.20 lakhs and 5.54 lakhs (ex showroom Delhi), the Tiago is a value for money proposition. Tata Motors has done a decent job in terms of quality and the built of this car is admirable. While the handling is neutral, the ride quality is impressive and together with the ergonomics, it makes the Tiago a city-friendly car.

There are 6 colours available - Pearlescent White, Platinum Silver, Espresso Brown, Sunburst Orange, Berry Red and Striker Blue. To book Tata Tiago online simply fill up a form on ecarldr.  

Comfort: 4/5
Refinement: 3/5
Safety: 3.5/5
Ride: 4/5
Handling: 3/5
Value for Money: 3.5/5

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