It's been a long time in the making, but the official launch of the Tata Nano has finally taken place. Billed as the World's Cheapest Car, the diminutive Nano will sell for just Rs. 1 lakh (about $2,000 U.S.) as it leaves the factory, though shipping, taxes and registration adds a considerable amount to that total. Still, there's a great deal of anticipation for the little car in its home market of India.
In base trim, the Tata Nano comes in just three colors without a radio or air conditioning, although higher-spec versions are available that include more color choices, along with such niceties as central locking, front power windows, fog lamps, a cup holder, and even a rear spoiler.
While it may be short on amenities, the real intent of the Nano is to get Indian families off their two-wheelers and inside the relative comfort and safety of a proper automobile. As such, the 33-horsepower, 623cc two-cylinder engine and four-speed gearbox is reportedly powerful enough to get the Nano to Indian highway speeds, and the car meets all required safety and emissions requirements. It also comes standard with an 18-month/24,000 kilometer warranty.
Due to the huge demand expected for the car, the automaker has created a special process for reservations. A computer will randomly choose the first 100,000 customers that will have the opportunity to purchase a new Nano. Deliveries are scheduled to begin in July, but in the meantime, Nano-intenders will soon be able to accessorize their life with appropriate accoutrements, including a Nano phone, wristwatch, and t-shirts. Official press release available after the jump. Thanks to all who sent this in!