Sunday, August 26, 2007

The 1-lakh car

The Washington Post
That fantasy may soon be within reach of families like Mahanan's. An Indian automaker is set to roll out the world's cheapest car early next year in what is being called a revolution by those in the industry and a nightmare by environmentalists and urban planners worried about India's already harrowing traffic and overly congested roads, not to mention lack of parking.

The manufacturer, Tata Motors, has provided few details about its new, four-door vehicle other than its sticker price: about $2,500 -- 100,000 rupees, also called 1 lakh, in Indian currency. Dubbed the "1-lakh car," it will cost half as much as the lowest-priced cars on India's roads today.
While two-thirds of the country's population still struggles on $1 a day, millions of people here have emerged from grinding poverty into the lower middle class. The Asian subcontinent's largely service-based economy has been growing 8 to 9 percent a year, and World Bank studies estimate that India's middle class will expand from 50 million people today to more than 500 million by 2025.
The Institute of Road Traffic Education recently estimated that in New Delhi alone, the number of traffic offenses is 146 million -- per day.


Blogger redstar said...

Does it save money by having no indicators and a special feature that makes it accelerate to block anyone indicating and trying to cross into the lane in front of it? Or cruise control that makes it dawdle along slowly in the middle lane, 20 kpph below the speed limit?

On a serious note, as I travel to the countries I visit regularly and imagine the people there having the same luxuries I have now, it's clear the planet doesn't have long to live - or that something major has to change.

11:44 PM  
Blogger Eldose said...

Im guessing this is the air car, which runs on compressed air or a hybrid of both air and fuel. If they do manage to erect an effective system to distribute compressed air, this will not only be a landmark release but one with profund impact on the worldwide automobile market. The pricing structure and reports of a plastic (light) body seems to indicate the characteristics of an air car. Plus they do already have a tie up with a major air engine developer. If it is so, this is exciting.

1:14 PM  

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