Friday, 9 January 2015

Get. Set. BOLT.

Forum Vijaya Mall, Chennai, truly witnessed a BOLT last Sunday, Jan 4, 2015.

BOLT from TATA Motors, to be precise.

A bright and beautiful BOLT arena, right at the heart of the mall, welcomed New Year revelers:

Families, lots of kids and young couples buzzed in and out. 

The BOLT Arena had three distinct Zones:

A 'Photo' Zone:

If you stood where the zone says "Stand Here to Experience Magic", you got a cool 3-D photo with Chennai born Narain Karthikeyan, India's first F1 (Formula 1) racing driver.  

The helpful BOLT team will bluetooth the photo right there, to our smartphone!

The second zone, a 'Gaming Zone':

Needless to say, this was a big draw as well & folks could game to their hearts' content on a Sunday evening.

But, 'The' center of attraction?  Of course, BOLT .. from the Red :)

The third aka the 'BOLT Zone':

That kid was inseparable from the BOLT.  All evening.  Its a pity he can't be given a driving licence. 

So, when he went over to the other side, I managed this side shot :)

BOLT is the New Premium Hatchback from TATA Motors, slated for launch the week of Jan 20, 2015.  

The first Hatchback of the new year in India.  And what a BOLT of a Hatchback.

I think Hatchbacks have been hugely popular for their compactness coupled with ease of driving in our conditions.  

If TATA Motors thought of springing a BOLT on us, well, they got it well and truly right this time. 

BOLT is unlike any TATA hatchback ever.  BOLT is premium.  In more ways than one.  And has many firsts for its class & segment.  

Ready to be BOLTed? Read on:  

1.  First time ever, in its class/segment (Compact Hatch), Multi-Drive with three different modes:

Are you the types who enjoys viewing TV in different modes? Opera, Theater, Sports, Music .. modes tailored to bring out the best you are seeking for that session? I am.

So, I could instantly relate to this first in class feature. 

The BOLT comes with a choice of three drive modes:

(a)  Sport mode - Choose this mode for that adrenaline rush and burst of power.

(b)  Eco mode - Choose this mode to play conservation & optimization champion with excellent fuel efficiency on offer.

(c)  City mode - Choose this mode for a perfect balance between the Sport and Eco modes.  

2.  REVOTRON 1.2 Turbocharged MPFi Petrol Engine:

TATA Motors has come up with this to ensure its an exceptionally powerful driving experience.

The F1 fan in me can say driving this BOLT in Sport mode is gonna be an experience.  

The diesel version comes with a Quadrajet 1.3 L engine with 75 PS @4000 RPM.

3.  GenNext Safety: 

BOLT comes with 9th Gen ABS by BOSCH, Corner Stability Control & Dual Airbags.

Karun Vashisht, who headed the BOLT Team at Forum Vijaya Mall, explained to me how the Bosch 9th Gen ABS & corner stability control could make sudden braking safer and ensure anti-skidding.

Staying in control just got a new impetus.

I much appreciate the airbags, especially at a time when domestic manufacturers in India are trying to balance market price sensitivities and safety.  I reckon the BOLT could be priced between Rs.500,000 to Rs.650,000 and Airbags in that segment is most welcome.

4.  Segment Superior Space & Comfort:  

This is actually the feature that first caught my attention.  For someone who has come to find city driving not so enjoyable during peak hours & enjoys being driven around (thanks to the driver/chauffeur), I have come to intuitively notice what matters to me first: the back seat passenger experience :-P

BOLT has very spacious rear passenger seating.  

I quite love its stylish rear design as well:

5.  ConnectNext Touchscreen Infotainment System by HARMAN:

Easily the best and most surprising feature in the segment, BOLT comes with a touchscreen infotainment system by Harman (no, I'm not blogging about a Merc here!) christened 'ConnectNext' by TATA Motors for BOLT.

It puts an array of entertainment and connectivity features at your command, including an Android Smartphone enabled navigation from MapMyIndia and advanced voice command recognition.

Now, what would a Chennai born musical herd as me test it out with? You got it right, music.

Karun just said 'Play the next track' & oh dear, ConnectNext did it.  We now no longer need to fiddle with the buttons - either on the system or the remote. Hands free bliss that, in this segment, without paying a luxury segment price

Thanks to Karun & the BOLT team for the nice sneak preview of the BOLT:

The experience was truly infotainment combining vital information and enjoyable entertainment.  Perfect Sunday evening fare.

I promptly registered for a test drive - no, couldn't drive it within the mall - remember, that kid & his dad wanted to and were in the queue ahead of me, as well? 

The Arena had a registration desk & I got an on-the-spot online registration done & a wrist band with an unique bar code & serial number:

Yeah, I have blurred the picture & angled to hide my serial number :)

The Arena also had the option to register for the BOLT car itself with Rs.5,000 which Karun advised me is completely refundable should one choose to cancel the registration later.  And, you heard this here: If you register, you get special privileges - for example, those who registered Sunday last got Chennai Open Tennis tickets and a VIP Lounge experience, all together easily worth between Rs.25,000 to Rs.30,000.  

The BOLT team was conducting quiz sessions with tennis tickets and other goodies as prizes. 

I guess, even registrations the next two weeks should come with premium benefits, so head over to the other Chennai exhibition points spread throughout January and grab it!  Get the schedule with dates here.  Its for so many Indian cities, so pick your city and point and date. 

Interested?  Know more about BOLT.  

Passion.  Performance.  Its all about the Drive. 

This post is a part of the Get. Set. Bolt. activity at BlogAdda

Cheers :)

ps:  I have clicked and watermarked all photographs.  Please seek prior written consent and approval before reproducing.  Thanks.