The wait is finally over! Tata Motors begins bookings for the world’s most awaited model by end of February 2009. The booking amount for the world’s cheapest car will be Rs. 70,000. However, even after paying nearly 70 percent of the total cost, the wait for the final delivery of the car may be quite long. The company is starting bookings for the ultra cheap car within the next weeks.
Coming three weeks, Tata dealers along with State Bank of India branches across the country will accept bookings for Tata Nano. The company has engaged around 100 branches of State Bank of India which will be eventually increased to 1000 branches pan India.
State Bank of India has entered an agreement with Tata Motors whereby the bank will not only be the sole lender for the car but will also book the cars for the company through its branches across India. SBI has one of the largest networks of branches in India and penetrates deep into the rural areas as well. SBI is also the largest nationalized bank in India which is quite capable of handling such volumes and making the “People’s Car” available to the people residing even in the remotest places of India.
According to the company estimates, Tata Motors expects to get initial bookings for at least one lakh cars in India alone. This means that the company will be able to sweep in at least Rs. 700 crores of cash within few weeks of opening of bookings for the car. In the time of greatest recessions ever, this would be a major launch for the company which will be able to roll in cash for Tata Motors. The car will be allotted to the people through a lottery system. This means that those listing on the top of the draw will be the first proud owners of the car for the first 100 Nano that will hit the Indian market. These will also be the people who will be able to get the premium in the grey market.
Tata Motors had initially planned to launch the car in October 2008. However, the company had to shut down the plant and quit the nearly complete plant in Singur, West Bengal. Tata Motors has faced fierce and violent protests from farmers who refused to be monetarily compensated and claimed the land to be returned to them. Tata Motors moved its complete Nano project to Sanand near Ahemdabad in Gujarat.
The first batch of Tata Nano will, however, roll out from company’s Pantnagar manufacturing unit in Uttrakhand. Tata Motors will commence full-fledged production of the car from its Sanand plant early next year. The car has already passed its road tests with flying colours and has been seen covering the hilly terrains of Uttrakhand for its safety and mileage features.
As the world awaits the first glimpse of Tata Nano on roads, India can be surely proud to be the first to bring the world’s cheapest car on road. In the times of recession and fuel efficient cars, Tata Nano is sure to make its mark in the auto world around the globe.