Tata Vista Review
Sedan Class HatchbackThursday, June 20, 2013
Being an Indian when we hear the word Indica, the first image that comes to our mind is of a taxi or cab. This is because Indica is much known for its commercial usage in India. Just because of this reason, people hesitate to buy this car for personal usage as it has very poor reputation in society. Four years back, Tata launched a new car as an answer to Maruti’s Swift with a name of Indica Vista. This car had nothing in common with the original Indica except for its name and Tata did so in order to get the loyal buyers of Indica which would like to opt for this car rather than Swift. Unfortunately, this formula failed and people started using this car also as a cab due to its name.
Personal users didn’t opt for this car because even after paying nearly one lakh more than the regular Indica, they were placed in the same category of cabs and nobody wants to be associated with cheaper cars when they spent more. Now Tata seems to have realized their mistake and now they have decided to promote this car only as Vista by dropping Indica from its name. Recently ads of the upgraded version of this car are trying to change the image of this car by distinguishing it with regular Indica. Tata has also dropped the Terra, Aqua, Aura and Aura+ names for the variants of new Indica Vista. The new variant names are LS, LX, VX and ZX+ for diesel variants and GLS, GLX and GVX for petrol variants. Will Tata be able to change the image of this car? Let’s find out.
Tata Vista Exterior
New Tata Vista now shares most of the styling bits from its elder sibling Manza. The face of the car has the most noticeable changes. The multi chamber headlights, fog lights with chrome surrounds and the big five layered chrome grille from Manza makes their way to new Vista. The front bumper also has chrome linings and a full size Tata logo on its grille similar to Manza. Now it’s almost impossible to distinguish Vista from Manza when seen from the front and it looks much more elegant than before. However side profiling gets minor changes like chrome linings on body colored side mouldings and door handles. It also gets new body colored outside mirrors and sporty roof antenna. New eight spoke 14 inch alloy wheels in dual tone is a welcome feature which adds sporty character to this car. The rear section of the car gets a new black colored plastic strip just below the rear glass. The rear wiper could have sportier. Otherwise the car has similar tall tail lamps which make it look much taller than its actual height. The overall appearance of new Vista is definitely better than the previous one and the high resemblance of its face with Manza should work in the favour of this car.
Tata Vista Interior
Tata Vista uses dual tone beige and black colours inside. The interiors are not completely new but Tata has tried to improve the quality inside. Earlier version had noticeable panel gaps inside with some cheap quality of plastic. Plastic quality is still not the best but yes, Tata has tried to improve it. Many buttons, switches and plastic are very hard to touch and indicate at the cost cutting. The fabric quality is very satisfactory. Tata cars are known for the space inside and Vista also pleases you with its spacious cabin. If it’s about space, it’s the best car in its segment offering ample amount of knee room, shoulder room and headroom. The car is appropriate for tall passengers and with a full seating of five, it’s a perfect car for long journeys. Vista truly has the space of a sedan and no car in its segment stands in front of it. The top model Indica Vista ZX/GZX comes loaded with these features: Dual Tone Beige Interior Color Scheme Front and Rear Fog Lamps, Power Windows, Power Steering, Remote Central Locking, Body Colored Outside Rear View Mirrors, Body Colored Bumpers, Body Colored Door Handles & Side Strips, Dual SRS Airbags, ABS (Anti-Lock Braking System) with EBD (Electronic Brake Distribution), Air Conditioner, Rear Defogger, Remote levers for Boot, Hood and Fuel Lid, Parcel Tray, 2 DIN Music System with AUX and Bluetooth.
Comfort and Convenience
Apart from the features inside, the seats also make it an extremely comfortable car. The under thigh and back support is perfect for every passenger. It has wide rear seats which are very comfortable for three adults. The front seats come with lumbar support and the driver seat is also height adjustable which along with adjustable steering allows the driver to get in to the perfect position to drive the car. Outside mirrors are now electrically adjustable with all four power windows and key less entry. The car has a powerful AC with heater, rear wiper and de-mister, digital clock and the top variant also has audio controls on its steering.
Dashboard and Storage
The design of the dual tone dashboard remains intact and it still houses the instrument console just above the central AC vents which may not be convenient for everyone. Tata has tried to improve the touch quality of the plastic but it’s still far away from what you get in Maruti Swift or VW Polo. The car has a central console with beige surroundings. The buttons used on it should have been improved. The car features a roomy glove box in its dashboard which has card, pen and coin holder. It has cubby holes in its gear console with a storage tray under its front passenger seat. The car also has magazine pockets in its front and rear doors with back pockets on front seats. The boot capacity of this car is 232 litres.
Music System of Tata Vista
New Tata Vista shares its 2-Din audio system with Manza. This music system is a radio, CD, MP3 player with inbuilt USB port and Aux-Input. This music system is incorporated with four speakers and two tweeters. It also has Bluetooth connectivity which allows the pairing of five phones with audio streaming and phone book access.
Engine and Gearbox of Tata Vista
Tata Vista has four engine options, one of petrol and three of diesel. The 1172cc 1.2L Safire65 petrol engine has a maximum power of 64 bhp at 5500 rpm and a maximum torque of 96 Nm at 3000 rpm giving a top speed of 135 kmph and reaches 0-100kmph mark in more than 17 seconds and gives an average mileage of 13 kmpl. The 1248cc 1.3L Quadra-jet has a maximum power of 74 bhp at 4000 rpm and a maximum torque of 190 Nm at 1750-3000 rpm giving the top speed of over 150kmph and reaches 0-100kmph mark in under 15 seconds and gives an average mileage of 18kmpl. The 1405cc 1.4L TDi BS-III diesel engine has a maximum power of 70 Bhp at 4500 rpm and a maximum torque of 135 Nm at 2500 rpm giving a top speed of 155 kmph and reaches 0-100kmph mark in above 17 seconds and gives an average mileage of 16 kmpl. The third diesel engine is 1248cc Multijet, which generates maximum power of 89 bhp with maximum torque of 200 nm. All these four engines are mated with a five speed manual gearbox.
Acceleration and Performance
Drive the petrol variant of this car and soon you can figure out why people don’t opt for this car. You can’t think of comparing this car with others like Maruti Swift or Ritz, Hyundai i10 or i20. The K-series and Kappa engines are benchmarks in this segment and this engine is nowhere near them. The engine is not able to carry the heavy weight of this car. Even the 1.0L engines from Maruti and 1.1L from Hyundai feels much responsive and enthusiast than this engine. The car suffers a major turbo lag and you will have to wait for ages to get response from this car. The car does 0-100km/hr in more than 17 seconds and it’s hard to make this car jump a speed of 135km/hr. Yes, the 1.4L engine feels much better and the high end performance makes it better than some of its competitors but we still don’t think it can beat Swift. The gear ratios are a bit taller and this engine is enjoyable only after 3000rpm.
This engine does 0-100km/hr in almost 15 seconds and can go pass the speed of 150km/hr. Tata is relying very much on its 1.3L diesel engine as this variant is specially prepared to take on its number one rival, Maruti Swift. This variant will be the major contributor to its sales. With this engine, Vista feels the best hatch from Tata till date. Tata has perfectly equipped this car with this engine as the car feels very enthusiastic and nimble. The car suffers a minimal turbo lag as turbo starts to kick in as early as 1750 rpm. In daily traffic, it’s a treat to drive this car as you need not to change gears frequently. Moreover Tata has worked on its clutch to make it lighter and the rubbery effect in gear transitions has also been improved. After 2000rpm, you can find it easy to overtake most of the vehicles.
The car settles really well on highways as till 3500rpm, it feels butter smooth. Even if you push it hard in any gear, it always feels eager to go. This engine is the most refined and vibration less engine used in any Tata car. The car can easily cross the speed of 150km/hr and does 0-100km/hr within 15 seconds which makes it faster than most of its competitors including VW Polo and Maruti Ritz. This car has all the potential to give a tough competition to Maruti Swift. Its TDi engine has been tested before and takes above 17 seconds to reach 0-100km/hr and lacks refinement. This engine turns very noisy once you go pass 2200rpm which is very hard to do in city conditions as it suffers major turbo lag. With this engine, you can always sense the need of power as it finds it really hard to keep moving in city traffic.
Tata Vista Mileage
The 1.2L petrol variant will give you an overall fuel efficiency of around 13km/ltr in city conditions while its 1.4L petrol unit will give you a mileage of around 10-11km/ltr. Its diesel motors are pretty fuel efficient as its 1.4LTdi engine can return you an overall mileage of around 16km/ltr while expect its 1.3L to give you a mileage of around 18km/ltr.
The top variant comes loaded with safety features like Dual front SRS air bags, central locking, collapsible steering and Engine Immobilizer.
Suspension and Braking
Suspension system of Vista still needs to be improved. The heavy weight of the car is not smoothly carried by its suspension and many of the bumps and potholes can bother you inside. It’s a big drawback for this car as it affects the overall ride quality of any vehicle. However, its braking system is quite capable to keep this heavy machine under control. The car features disk brakes at its front and drum brakes at its back, its top variant also sports ABS with EBD which confirms you safe driving.
Ride and Handling
The handling of this car is much better than other cars from Tata. Although, it’s not as superb as Swift or Ritz but can impress you in city traffic. Yes, it can’t be treated like any other hatch due to its heavy size but it’s still manageable to park this vehicle with a minimum turning radius of 5.0m. With a wheelbase of 2470mm and broad tyres, the car holds the road pretty well but due to soft suspension, you lack the confidence around sharp corners as there is major body roll. Even on highways, you can sense the need of a good suspension as it unsettles at high speeds.
Tata Vista Variants
New Tata Indica Vista is available in 9 variants: Quadrajet LS, Quadrajet VX, TDi LS, TDi LX, Safire65 GLS, Safire65 GLX, Safire65 GVX, D90 VX and D90 ZX+.
Tata Indica Vista is available in six attractive shades: Summer Sparkle, Arctic Silver, Spice Red, Porcelain White, Cavern Grey and Brilliant Blue.
The new Vista looks good; it’s very spacious and has many features. We won’t recommend you any of its petrol variant but if it’s about diesel then yes, it has something for everyone. Vista with a Multijet engine is a complete value for money car. It’s cheaper than Swift and Ritz by a huge margin and offers even better performance than Ritz. Yes, there are some quality issues but they can be neglected at this price. So if you are looking for full size diesel hatch with power packed performance at a reasonable price; then Vista is a perfect option for you. Its TDi variant is also perfect for those who can compromise on power and refinement but need a big and affordable car.