I came across an article in Money Today that talked about the running costs of the Tata Nano compared to the Maruti 800, the Santro and the Swift. It was a very interesting read especially since I was wanting to put up a running cost calculator of my own on this website. I felt a better comparison would be of the Tata Nano with the Maruti Suzuki 800, the Maruti Suzuki Alto, the Maruti Suzuki Omni, the base Hyundai Santro and the Tata Indica Xeta GL. These are the 5 cheapest vehicles currently available. I feel there is no point comparing it with the Swift. The only true comparison is with the M800. The others are much costlier.
I have used Chennai prices as my reference. Insurance values come from Carwale.com. For registration and life tax have used a standard 8%. I have used a different way to calculate costs and have added some parameters as well. Of course most of the parameters may need to be tweaked for actual use but hope this gives an idea.
Please click on the below image to view the comparison chart.
For 3 years the Nano has the lowest running cost with the 800 close behind. The Alto and the Omni are very similarly priced while the Santro and Xeta are also similarly positioned.
Of course the maintenance costs of the Tata Nano still need to be seen. Hope the quality of the finished vehicle will be decent enough.
Am still working on an online running cost calculator. Will add it in when I am done with it. Till then do let me know your comments on this comparison. If you feel like you could also play with the excel I used to create it runningcostcalculator.