GM's Small Car Plans, Inspired by Tata

The most inexpensive car in the world has sparked a new way of thinking for global carmakers, including General Motors. India’s Tata Nano is making a solid case for building small, super low cost automobiles for the masses. The Nano’s approach is so revolutionary—making a well conceived, efficient commuter car available for less than $2,500— some analysts equate its impact to the that of the Ford Model T.

After the success of the Chevrolet Spark, a small $7,000 car in India, GM now plans a second small car offering, a move apparently influenced by the Tata Nano. But the automaker insists that the new model will not be a direct competitor to Tata. The new car is expected to sell at a price between the Spark and the Nano.

“We need something lower than what we have now,” GM group vice president David Reilly told the Business Standard of India. “I think if we could find a vehicle for less than that, it would not only benefit India but could benefit other places also.” Details on the new small car model are being kept under wraps. GM expects to introduce the car within the next two years.

Currently, small cars account for 75 percent of new car sales in India, led by automaker tag-team Maruti Suzuki. But the car market is still relatively untapped with respect to consumer demand in India. As developing countries offer the potential for explosive growth in affordable personal transportation, more manufacturers are likely to consider the new small car formula modeled on Tata.


  • TSBinLV

    Great, give more people an easier way to burn gas…

  • babu flubber

    At just 600 kilos (1323 lbs), this car is light enough to be made into a hybrid by adding bicycle pedals. Or just cut holes in the floor and use your Flintstone feet! lol

    If they ever want to sell these silly clown cars in Chicago, they better include tinted windows and disguises for all passengers.
    On one of our typically windy days, or whenever you’re passed by a semi, this tumbleweed with tires would be swept off the Jane Addams Expressway like a discarded Baby Ruth wrapper.

  • Anonymous

    That was a not so magnanimous comment from babu flubber. May be he belong to the new era when the Hummeers and SUV was born.
    US’s model T,UK’s mini, Italy’s Bugfiat,Germany’s Voks wagon Mercede’s smart are examples of man’s ingenuity. So is Tata’s Nano .It was born out of a necessity of the millions of Indians, other Asians and other developing countries where a large number of people depend on two wheelers for their daily commuting.The unbelievable interest Nano has crested even in countries like US and Europe should be an eye opener to those who consider it as a mere toy. The modified and technologically advanced versions of Nano will reach US and Europe in the not so distant time. When Tatas ventured in to the production of an indigenously built passenger cars named Indica many experts thought that it was a joke but all of them were proved wrong.Today Tata’s competence in automobile field is well known.

  • polito

    just wanted to comment on a previous comment made above…
    i recently purchased the indian version of the suzuki maruti, and yes, it isn´t the most stylish car, and i also don´t expect everyone to generally envy me on the street, but seriously i don´t care, i am loving the fact that this car is economical, that it is actually cheaper for me to drive to uni, then to catch public transportation, it is easier to find parking, and also, no robber would look twice at my car…..
    i reackon small cars are the way of the future, in all seriousness, if i could purchase a 4×4, but why would i, just to though my money away, i´ll leave those cars for people that actually need them, like people that travel long distance EVERYDAY and for construction workers ect….
    maybe a change of culture is what is needed so that ridiculous thoughts like the one made above are changed, and the reality of what is important kicks in…..