Do you remember the Tata Indica Vista? Well, this isn’t too different from that, but indeed in a more polished form. The engine choices aren’t all old, either. And while the market has steadily moved further ahead, the Tata Bolt still has a lot to offer. That’s mainly in the form of space, comfort, an above-average drive, and safety.
Think of it as the second-generation Tata Indica, and some more. Having said that, the design still looks pleasing, even when compared to newer rivals. The rather nice turbine-like 15-inch wheels, blacked-out projector headlamps, a shorter tail lamp cluster, and an overall likable but familiar silhouette work together to help the Bolt seem appealing. The inclusion of a matte black pillar means the Bolt also offers a ‘floating roof’, while the black surrounds of the rear windscreen make it look like a wraparound unit.
Spacious and comfortable, the Bolt’s cabin is for those who have their priorities defined. If you’re looking for the latest gizmos, you’d be disappointed. But if comfort’s on the top of the list, it’s going to please you. In addition, the design doesn’t look too bad, either. It gets dual airbags, a small touchscreen system, a four-speaker system, and a nice multi-function steering wheel. The all-black interior theme doesn’t make it look any larger than what it is, but the truth is told, the Bolt’s got class-leading space. And that can’t be matched by newer rivals.
There are two engine options on the Tata Bolt. One is a 1.3-liter diesel, which comes from Fiat, and also does duty in a variety of other cars. At 75 PS and 190 Nm, it won’t set your heart racing, but it’s a fairly refined unit and has exhibited a strong track record for fuel efficiency and longevity. The other option is Tata’s very own 1.2-liter turbocharged petrol engine. It makes 90 PS and 142 Nm but has enough punch for most everyday tasks. And in comparison to naturally aspirated units, it doesn’t feel gutless, either. Both engines come with a 5-speed manual gearbox. And the petrol version even gets its own Drive Modes, which alter the engine map depending on the mode for a varied power delivery. You can choose between Eco, City, and Sport.
The Bolt isn’t one of the huge sellers in the Tata’s product line, but if you’re looking for a spacious, comfortable and dependable hatchback, it can be the right choice. Especially at the price — the base XE Petrol starts at Rs 4.97 lakh and goes all the way up to Rs 6.54 lakh. The Tata Bolt Diesel has priced at Rs 6.04 lakh onwards with the top-spec version costing Rs 7.56 lakh. All prices are ex-showroom, Delhi.
The usual set of rivals include vehicles like the Hyundai Grand i10 and Maruti Suzuki Swift in terms of pricing. The Hyundai Elite i20 and the Maruti Suzuki Baleno are a league ahead in terms of features but offer similar space.