The saying - competition breeds excellence - couldn’t hold more true than in the time we are in. Car makers across the food chain need to constantly up the ante either to respond to competition or push the boundaries in the hope of becoming more desirable in the eyes of the customer. While Honda has yet again managed to improve levels of refinement for its diesel engine, Tata has pulled out an ace from under its sleeve. For its new 1.5-litre diesel engine that has made its debut along with its Nexon, is worthy of praise. Not only is it the engine extremely refined, but it is also equally willing.
Unfortunately, though for our annual evaluation rounds, Tata sent us the petrol engined Nexon. And there is no kind way to put it, the Tata Nexon petrol doesn’t do justice to the overall capability of the car. The 1.2-litre, four-cylinder engine maybe turbocharged but it’s really got no real world punch at all despite its 108bhp power figure. It feels sluggish at low revs and while you get a little bit of power in the mid-range the engine begins to run out of steam at the top reaches of the power band. The engine also has high NVH levels for a petrol and could definitely do with better refinement. It’s almost like Tata Motors is so well versed at making diesel engines that there are similar traits here. Except, petrol engines by nature are very different. So, there is nothing to look forward to here really.
The good bits of the car that continue impress include light gearshifts and a very stable chassis and suspension setup that allows you to attack high speed bends with confidence. In all fairness, it has to be said that the Nexon handles unlike any other Tata, though the petrol motor does not do justice to the Nexon’s capabilities and if you are looking to buy this car, it’s the diesel model you should be going for with its segment leading 108bhp and 260Nm power figures.
Nevertheless, other aspects going in its favour include its design. The Nexon with its smooth flowing lines, coupe like roofline and flared wheel arches along with its dual tone paint scheme ensures you get the right amount of attention on the road. The cabin too feels modern and comes loaded with features. All in all, the Nexon looks just like what Tata motors needs to stay in the game.