Tata Manza Review Part 2
The now famous Fiat 1.3 liter diesel runs in a higher state of tuning to produce 89 BHP (@ 4,000 rpm) and 200 NM of torque (@ 1,750 – 3,000 rpm). Yes, this is the Fiat Linea spec engine. A key contributor to the extra power is a large variable geometry turbocharger. Owners report that the engine’s mid-range is especially strong, though total throttle is average at best (0 – 100 in 15 odd seconds). Also, the turbo lag is on the higher side and negatively affects urban drivability.
Turbo-lag definitely takes some getting used to. This engine enters its element beyond 1800 rpm. The useful power band for diesel is between 2,000 and 4,100 rpm, although the engine can cross the 5,000 rpm mark for those times when you need to overtake a truck in the same gear. The Manza diesel can comfortably navigate the highway at 140 km / h, after which progress is very slow. The fuel efficiency and robust nature of the diesel kept all of our reviewers happy. The 1.4-liter DOHC gasoline is rated at 89 BHP (@ 6000 rpm) and 116 NM of torque (@ 4750 rpm).
The owners report that it is necessary to work the gasoline engine for it to work. Handling is good within the city, 2nd gear easily advances from 10 km / h to 80. Gasoline is also smooth and accelerates freely to its 6,600 rpm redline. Some of our reviewers quite liked the engine note at high rpm (classic Italian trait), however the noise becomes excessively loud at high speed and regular (non-enthusiastic) users will find it annoying. The absolute performance is, again, strictly adequate. NVH levels with either engine are acceptable while cruising; however, poor cab insulation shows when the engines are made to work hard. The Fiat C549 gearbox offers the best gear change quality ever seen in a Tata.
It has medium length shifters, a few notches are obvious, but the overall gearshift action is decent (not a patch on Dzire’s shifting quality though). All of our reviewers praised the Manza’s urban ride quality. The suspension is perfectly tuned and keeps the occupants comfortable in the city. Comfort levels remain excellent on flat highways or even broken road parcels. However, our reviewers complained of excessive vertical movement of the rear suspension, when the Manza rides fast over uneven patches of road.
The Manza has neutral handling characteristics. Owners recommend a quiet driving style, as it is not really designed for enthusiasts. Tight curves taken at high speed will make the Manza understeer generously. Drive conservatively and grip levels are still decent. Stability at high speed is part of the course, although the steering appears wavy and has a tendency to swerve on the highway. The turning radius is a reasonable 5.1 meters (Dzire = 4.7 and Line = 5.5). For the first time for a Tata car, the brakes have received “excellent” ratings. The ABS-equipped anchors do their job well and keep the Tata’s composure even under emergency braking conditions.