As part of its commitment to alternative fuel technologies, India’s Tata Motors has demonstrated the compressed natural gas powered Tata Nano CNG Concept and the Tata Magic IRIS CNG at the 2012 Auto Expo in New Delhi. Tata says the Nano showcases the company’s capability to develop all kinds of vehicles for CNG applications. The sequential gas injection system has been calibrated with the EMS system for smart switching between CNG and gasoline fuel systems. The car comes with software with safety strategies like automatic cut-off CNG supply even in the case of diminutive leakages and automatic fuel quality checks.
The CNG fuel system has been packaged in order to not disturb the existing luggage space.
The Tata Nano CNG comes with a touring range of more than 150 km in addition to the existing touring range (375 km) of the Nano 2012, improved emissions with low CO2, best-in-class fuel economy, resulting in low running cost.
Tata Motors expects to launch the CNG version of the small car in the domestic market sometime this year. Export markets are also possible, with Thailand, where Tata already has an assembly plant, as a likely first contender.
The Tata Magic IRIS CNG is an environment friendly public transport vehicle that operates solely on natural gas. It comes equipped with a 611 cc, water-cooled BSIV-compliant CNG engine generating power of 12.8 HP and 37 Nm torque. The 9 kg cylinder provides a range of up to 220 kilometers. The Magic Iris can accomodate 4 to 5 passengers depending on the variant.
Its high touring range due to bigger gas cylinder coupled with high mileage makes it a more profitable vehicle for operators. It adheres to Tata Motor’s special CNG safety standards such as Single Point Gas Injection, Swagelok Joint, Solenoid Valve on ITVR (integrated tank valve & regulator) and comes with stainless steel pipes instead of mild steel pipes, special air venting system arrangement to prevent rusting and gas leakages. The tamper proof ECU electronically limits maximum speed of vehicles as per local city requirements.
Tata Motors also displayed the Tata Ace Refresh, first launched in 2005 and offered as a CNG variant.
(This article primarily compiled using information from a Tata Motors press release)