The Tata they're selling in India right now is absolutely spartan. They have no ventilation system, and only one window rolls down. I do not believe there is a fuel gauge. For people who think the Civic CX is bare-bones, this thing is a wake-up call.
For $8,000, buy a 4-year-old Corolla or a 2-year-old Kia.
I like the performance 0-37 MPH in 8.0 seconds. I wonder if you have to get out and give it a push to get it rolling from a standing stop? As for the answer to the question would I buy one. Definitely not during the first few years it was introduced into the US and I could see what kind of service they gave. I for one remember when the Yugo was introduced in the US and remember what a flop it was. Cheap yes, dependable no.
If they can convince Americans that it's more reliable and long-lasting than a $8,000 used car, they could pick up a few buyers...but that's a tall order to fill. $8,000 buys a decent used car.
Edit: Wait, what? Where did the $8000 number come from? The link in the OP says:
When the Nano goes on sale in July, Tata confirms that it will be wearing a $2200 price tag despite cost increases of steel and other commodities and the need to move and start again with the Nano factory after the original site in Singur, West Bengal, was taken over by displaced farmers and Marxist activists.
$2200 sounds more like what I've heard before, and makes it likely to sell a few.
Edit: Found the $8,000 part:
Tata Motors already has made a European version of the four-seat car that will cost about $8,000 when it debuts in 2011, and a Tata Technologies official said privately that the U.S. version is expected to have a comparable price. The official did not want to be identified because the price has not been made public.
looks like itll end up being around 8k once it gets up to us specs. sounds alot like the smart car story though. 50 mpg now in its current trim but has zero options and cant do over 65mph. us version will have alot more added to it increasing weight, power and ammenities to get it into the market. id figure the mpg to drop into the low 40's when it hits.
id buy if it was 3k but anymore and its not worth it for me to die in a clown car. just like id buy a smart if it was the 8k it sells for in the rest of the world, not the over inflated us price.
SUVs + cellphones = Tata speedbump. I think there should be an exponential tax on gas, with fleet exceptions.
I would love it if they started reproduction on the classic bug. With today's technology, they could be pretty much the same, but with better crash test ratings, amenities, and FE.