The world’s most affordable small car, the Tata Nano failed to make any significant dent in the automotive industry. Ironically, much of its failure has been attributed to the car’s marketing campaign itself, which termed the Nano as a ‘cheap’ car. This did not go well among the Indian customers who would shy away from a product that was termed as ‘cheap’. Adding to the negative publicity was the string of fire-catching incidents which gave the brand ’Nano’ a bad name.
Nonetheless, the Indian automaker is readying a new marketing plan to revamp and re-launch the Nano brand in the global market. “Tata Nano, once a symbol of aspiration for two-wheeler owners, will be revamped next year and launched as a ‘Smart City Car’.” Girish Wagh, senior vice president of Tata Motors said on the sidelines of the launch of the Tata Zest compact sedan last week. “We are carrying out multiple interventions to improve the product as well as its image to ensure that the Nano lives up to its promise.” Wagh added.
The Indian automaker realised that there were significant number of cases where people would test-drive, book their Nano and then, drop out owning to the negativity around the brand. “Social circles would dissuade them” Wagh said adding that the company is hoping to see a change in Nano’s fortunes, post re-branding, including possible export to international markets.
Clarifying the company’s stance regarding the fire-catching incidents involving the Nano Wagh said, “Although fire incidents were either caused by foreign objects in the exhaust system or external manipulation with the car’s electrical systems, over the period, we have rectified them.” The company has re-focused on the safety aspect in the subsequent model Tata Nano Twist, Wagh added.