Friday, January 11, 2008

How will Tata's Nano affect Kerala?

Ratan Tata with the Nano

Kerala already leads in the sale of motor vehicles in India. A Maruti dealer in the State regularly advertises to convey his gratitude to the people for keeping him in the No. 1 spot in automobile sales in the country.
Tata's Nano, which will sell at Rs.100,000, is labelled as the cheapest motor car in the world. The cheapest cars made in China cost twice as much or more.
How will the arrival of Nano affect Kerala, which is already experiencing serious problems due to poor infrastructure?

Ratan Tata revealed at the unveiling of the Nano that it was the plight of a small family moving in a two-wheeler that prompted him to develop a cheap motor car.

Of the motor vehicles on Kerala's roads, more than half are two-wheelers. Maruti has been trying for several years to persuade the two-wheeler riders to switch to car by offering loans with low instalments. The arrival of Nano will certainly increase the pressure on scooter and motor cycle owners to go in for a car. This will worsen the traffic stiuation. Work is in progress to widen roads and to improve their condition. But there is reason to believe that the government cannot keep pace with the automobile companies.

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