Sure, it looks funny – but for 20 Grand?
Tata Technologies, the developer of the eMO, is a Tata Group company, of which there are many. Ever hear of Jaguar or Land Rover? Both part of the Tata Group of companies since 2008. Based in India, Tata has over 100 companies with a global presence in a variety of industries. One of which is actually an automobile company – Tata Motors. Combined the Tata Group companies produce over $80 billion annual revenue. But a careful reading of that first sentence will reveal that the eMO came out of the technology company, not the automobile company. What’s up with that?
eMO (Electric Mobility Study) is actually a design study by the technology group with the goal of validating the possibility of producing a low priced electric vehicle (EV) that could meet the needs of the consumer, while meeting US Government safety ratings. With such a low target price, sacrifices had to be made. No navigation system, as is found in every Nissan LEAF. No leather interior, as is available in the Volt. But it does have durable composite body panels with the color molded in, over a steel safety cage. No airborne paint emissions to complement the lack of gasoline emissions. The basic 100 mile range and a top speed of 65 miles per hour. One advantage of composite body panels – no dents. Ask your neighborhood Saturn owner if they like that. The structure also contributes to its presumed light weight, no doubt one of the design goals.
Another interesting design choice was to not offer a fifth door, hatchback style at the rear of the vehicle. Rear doors are rear hinged to access the rear seats, which can be flipped up for additional storage. There is no storage behind the rear seats. That being the case, we’ll just keep cargo and groceries back there if it’s okay with you.
While a car like the eMO would not be right for everybody, we can see where it could have a strong appeal for some if it could actually be produced and sold for $20,000 pre-incentive. Here’s a short video highlighting design goals and fuel efficiency: