India's largest vehicle maker, Tata Motors plans to launch ultra low cost composite cars in India. As the auto makers announced their plan to make a low-cost small car with composite structure, the Tata Motors share surges over 2 percent.
The composite vehicles sold globally were made of carbon fibre, which is very expensive. So to reduce the cost, Tata will use a material called poly-diallyl-phthalate (PDP) to built the car. But still the vehicle cost slightly more than the Tata Nano.
Advantages of composite car:
The composite cars are lighter, more fuel-efficient and environment-friendly (emits less carbon dioxide). Composite structures are also more flexible than metal and can be moulded into various shapes. Moreover PDP helps to reduce manufacturing costs very lower to that of the cars made of conventional steel and aluminium. Unlike the metal-body cars that uses 500 bits and pieces, the composite car needs just 25 moulds.
The basic structure of the Tata composite car will be tub-like, with the option to make a dozen niche products, like mini SUVs, two-seaters, pick-ups, vans and coupes, amongst others. The car's architecture and construction is made by Marcello Gandini, a famous Italian designer. Gandini is known for the use of composites in supercars such as Lamborghini's Miura and the Countach.
Tata's target is to become a second largest carmaker in terms of sale by 2020. As a part of it, Tata has started a major restructuring exercise within the company. The composite car has been successfully crash-tested at the Pune facilities of Tata Motors.
Commenting on Tata Motors’ latest project, V. G. Ramakrishnan, Managing Director of Frost & Sullivan, said, “The market acceptance of such a car could be a challenge. How closely the fit and finish can match conventional cars will be the key elements to watch out for.”
BMW i3 and the Gordon Murray T25 were the globally well known composite cars. No official information about the launch of this car is available from the company yet. The company expect that both the Nano and the yet-to-be launched composite car will compete against other carmakers and will brings a decent share in the Indian auto market. It is expected that the composite car will be displayed at the Geneva Motor Show to be held from March 7 to March 17.
The composite car will cost slightly higher than Tata Nano
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