Innovation is a difficult task to accomplish, more so, keep it going, making people believe and turn them into a life long customer. Tata Nano which was introduced in the market as ‘World’s cheapest car’ has now unofficially been out of the race. In June 2018, the company has reportedly reduced its production of the car from 275 in June 2017 to 1 in June 2018.
Problems and implications:
Below are the major problems that have led to the rapid drop in the sales of Nano car:
Cost: The main marketing strategy of the product was based on the low price of the car. It was meant to be affordable to each and every person in India. At the start of its operations, 10 years back the price was 1 lakh, whereas now it is estimated to be 2.5 lakhs. Moreover, the low price in itself turned out to be a catalyst for the decrease in sales. Common people shift from two-wheelers to cars not just for the aid in traveling but to be seen better in terms of financial assets in the society. Such people don’t pay heed in the efficiency and low cost of the car. They rather feel that such a cheap car would actually lower their position in the society.
Interiors: The car is spatially compact and cozy. The car uses low budget-high value for the money paid materials for its interior works and therefore, it is simple but elegant looking! But, customers were unwilling to settle for a simple interior!
Necessity: The car provides one of the best efficiencies in the market and its small size makes it ideal for job-goers due to the heavy traffics in the metro. But the general population doesn’t buy a car for necessity. As mentioned previously, people buy it for the sake of improving their social image in the society. People when in necessity often use public transport rather than buying a new car.
Following are the solutions that could be applied to boost up the future sales of the car:
Go Electric: EV is trending, making it electric would mean absolute zero emission. Moreover, with the current rise in interest of common people in online taxi services like Ola and Uber, the focused area of sales could be the driver partners rebranding - "Nano Rides" rather than focusing on selling it to the common people. Not only would the ride be cheap and efficient, the space it occupies on roads would reduce traffic and people could, therefore, reach their destination faster.
Feature enhancements: Nano car is also known for its safety both for the people inside the car and also the pedestrians. Improved features on this upfront could be worked upon and specialized safety mechanisms could be provided in case of a fire. Features like a sun-roof system, connected car entertainment, automatic transmission, and, side airbags, enhanced design for better mobility could be added to make it more appealable to customers.
Awareness: In cities like Delhi pollution levels have risen to hazardous levels and use of Nano cars in such cities would be ideal to halt the pollution level from rising further. Moreover, the prevailing traffic in urban cities could be reduced to a high level with the use of the car. People should be made aware of the future implications of using small-comfortable cars over luxurious cars.
Improvement in performance: Robust long standing battery and engine performance could be enhanced through R&D. Moreover, Electric Nano cars could be the next great addition in the market due to its efficiency.
History has proved that some ideas are ahead of their time! But, a rebranded EV with host of features will be timed and present.