RIP Tata Nano, the world's cheapest car

Tata's teensy-tiny Nano will no longer be produced.

Steven Ewing Former managing editor
Steven Ewing spent his childhood reading car magazines, making his career as an automotive journalist an absolute dream job. After getting his foot in the door at Automobile while he was still a teenager, Ewing found homes on the mastheads at Winding Road magazine, Autoblog and Motor1.com before joining the CNET team in 2018. He has also served on the World Car Awards jury. Ewing grew up ingrained in the car culture of Detroit -- the Motor City -- before eventually moving to Los Angeles. In his free time, Ewing loves to cook, binge trash TV and play the drums.
Steven Ewing
Tata Nano
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Tata Nano

The current Tata Nano costs as little as 236,447 rupees, or about $3,400.

Tata Motors

Well, you guys, pour one out for the Tata Nano. The world's cheapest car is all but dead.

According to Bloomberg, Tata Motors built one single Nano in June 2018. During the same month in 2017, Tata produced 275. As a final nail in the coffin, Tata told Bloomberg the car "cannot continue beyond 2019."

The Tata Nano entered the Indian market in 2008 priced from just 100,000 rupees, or about $1,500. The price increased over time, and according to Tata Motors' website, an entry-level Nano starts at 236,447 rupees today, or $3,435 based on current exchange rates.

Right from the get-go, the Nano was plagued with production issues, not to mention poor safety and dismal crash test results. The cars were also known to catch fire, which, uh, isn't good.

Don't let the Nano's death tarnish your impression of the Indian automotive market. Bloomberg says most vehicle segments have seen huge growth in recent years; passenger vehicle sales climbed 38 percent in June 2018. Indian customers -- like other global buyers -- are super value-conscious, but the ultracheap Nano proved to be a step too far in the cost-cutting direction. Not even the addition of bling-bling style could help.