The nano-car. Small is NOT always beautiful.

posted by Josh Ran

Yep, that’s what the world needs alright – another nano-something. This time, it’s the ‘world’s smallest and cheapest car‘ released by India’s Tata motors yesterday. It’s tiny and it’s seriously seriously cheap – as in, around $2500. How is it so cheap you ask? Well for one thing, apparently most of the car is made of ummmmmm plastic. Great. That’s all we need, hundreds of thousands of people driving around in vehicles that provide about as much safety as tupperware. Tata has also built it’s nano-factory in an area where taxes are ‘ahem’ minimal and on land where thousands of evicted farmers once grew food for themselves and their communities. One of these farmers hung himself in despair. This is the dirty landscape where commerce and climate justice meet. These farmers were displaced to make room for a factory that will build cars that will contribute to a massive increase in greenhouse gas emissions (not to mention smog and particulate pollution) which in turn will disproportionately affect the livelihoods of millions of people living on marginal land. Personally, I’d rather see India investing in a ‘mega’ or a ‘giga’ – like a mega-bus system or an improved ‘giga rapid transit’ system.