2020 Tata Nexon – Click above for high resolution image gallery

2020 Tata Nexon

Car Tested: 2020 Tata Nexon XZ Plus (O) Dual Tone; Road Test No. 1208; Test Location: Mumbai

Price OTR Mumbai: Rs. 8.22 – 15.41 lakhs

The 2020 Tata Nexon gets some noteworthy changes to its styling along with some much-needed feature additions

Tata Nexon – well this is a car that is popular both offline and online. Since its launch in 2017, it has found a good number of buyers while it also found tons of fans in the YouTube comments section with everyone going gaga over this car. Earlier this year, Tata brought in the facelifted version of the Nexon with cosmetic updates, new features and updated mechanicals. We have the petrol manual with us so let’s check out what is in store.

MotorQuest: The engines of the Nexon have been developed by Tata Motors and AVL. AVL is an Austrian company that also developed the 2.2-litre diesel engine which is used on the Hexa, Safari Storme, Scorpio and XUV500.

The facelifted Nexon looks very premium, bold and attractive thanks to the use of multiple colors

Exteriors – On the outside, the 2020 Tata Nexon gets a new grille, new headlamps, new tail lamps, new bumpers with skid plates, new alloy wheels and some new colours and with all these changes the Nexon doesn’t feel like a grown up Indica. The new dark green colour looks quite tasty and reminds me of the Apple iPhone 11 Pro’s Midnight Green colour. The Nexon scored a 5-star rating in the Global NCAP and the updated model gets a new bonnet to meet the pedestrian safety norms. The front bumper gets these tri-arrow elements which we saw on the Nexon EV too. The headlights are now slimmer and the face of the car looks modern and muscular. The compact SUV does get dual-tone colour options and those white strips running across the side and to the rear are still present but the C-pillar is now finished in black. The tailgate gets Nexon lettering in chrome.

The familiar looking dashboard gets a new steering wheel along with an all-digital instrument cluster

Interiors – The layout of the dashboard has been carried over from before but you do get a new steering wheel which looks so much better. The instrument cluster is a digital unit now, like the Tiago and Tigor but I feel the instrument cluster of the Altroz and Nexon EV looks much better and premium. This one looks a bit basic and the layout isn’t the best either. The quality of the fit and finish is good but it could have been better in certain areas. Storage spaces are a bit limited and the number of cubby holes is less so you need to figure out where to keep stuff like your mobile phone and wallet. The doors get umbrella holders too but Tata could have improved the design of the bottle holders.

The Nexon now gets connected car tech along with voice commands that also work in Hindi

The cabin could’ve done with more storage spaces at the front

In terms of features, the updated Tata Nexon gets ESP, traction control, roll-over mitigation, auto headlamps, auto wipers, TPMS, and most importantly a sunroof. The Nexon also gets IRA connected car features. The vehicle gets a floating touchscreen and 8 Harman speakers throwing beautiful sound! The display isn’t the best in the segment and a brighter and clearer screen would have been better. The vehicle gets dual front airbags on all variants but rivals have been offering 6 and 7 airbags on top variants!

The rear seats are well-shaped and space is decent but fitting 3 people could be a task

The Nexon gets seats that are quite comfortable and supportive. There’s enough space at the front and Tata has also worked on the rear seat. The backrest has been reclined a bit and thus the headroom is better than before. Knee room is very good too but the seat isn’t too wide to seat three people in comfort. While the boot is well-sized at 350-litres, some more storage spaces in the cabin would have been welcome.

The petrol motor suffers from low-end lag and performs best in its mid-range

Performance – Tata has updated the 1.2 turbo petrol engine to produce 120 PS (110 PS earlier) and 170 Nm and it comes with a 6-speed manual or AMT. The petrol engine is a 3-cylinder unit so there’s a minor jerk when you start the car, but refinement improves when you step on the throttle. The older engine’s tuning wasn’t the best but this one feels marginally better. However, the low-end response still feels a bit inconsistent because there are some flat spots in the rev band and the throttle response is plucky. Turbo lag can be felt below 2000 RPM and only when you enter the mid-range does the Nexon start feeling punchy.

A more polished tune for the petrol engine would have enriched the driving experience

If you want to gather pace quickly, you’ll have to work the engine and keep it in the correct RPM band. The engine performs best between 2500-5500 RPM. 0-100 km/hr timings get affected because of the traction control which cannot be switched. In-gear acceleration timings are decent but not at par with other 3-cylinder turbocharged petrol engines. The 6-speed manual is a good gearbox but the throws are long and the clutch release action is also not completely progressive. ARAI figures are 17.4 km/l for the MT and 16 km/l for the AMT and actual figures are between 9-12 km/l.

Both the engines are available with either a 6-speed MT or an AMT

The diesel motor delivers punchy performance and is very fun to drive especially when mated to a manual gearbox

The Nexon gets Eco, Comfort and Sport driving modes. These modes complement the engine nicely. Eco mode is better tuned now and works well for traffic commutes while also allowing you to save some fuel monies. Comfort mode ups the power delivery a bit and lends better driveability while Sport mode does make a noticeable different to the way the engine puts out its horses. This mode is more suited for open roads but of course you can even do some sprightly driving in the city with this.

2020 Tata Nexon VBOX
The Nexon’s Revotron engine is slower off the line compared to other 3-cyl turbo petrol engines

The 1.5-litre diesel engine is now BS6-compliant. It makes 110 PS at 4000 RPM and 260 Nm at 1500 RPM. We haven’t driven the BS6 diesel but we drove the BS4 version for a good amount of time and the engine came across as very torquey. A small amount of lag can be felt but then the mid-range is superb and the car gains pace very nicely. The ARAI figure for the diesel is now 22.4 km/l and the oil-burner is known to be quite efficient in day to day driving.

The Nexon offers brilliant ride quality and superb high speed stability

Driving Dynamics – The pre-facelift Tata Nexon was known for its stellar ride and the new one is barely different. Low-speed ride is a tad stiff over sharp undulations but the ride quality is just beautiful once you get going. The car feels very composed and stable and it will easily say Tata to all its rivals while driving over bad roads. The steering is also one of the best in the segment offering a very good feel and it weighs up brilliantly. The Nexon feels confident to drive and it makes you want to take the longer route home. There are no complaints on the braking front too.

The long equipment list combined with the bold exterior make the Nexon a compelling buy

Verdict – The Tata Nexon has always been an impressive package but the new one is way better thanks to all the cosmetic updates, feature additions and mechanical tweaks. The petrol engine could have been tuned better and the fit & finish could have been improved but otherwise there are no major reasons to dislike this vehicle, thus making it one of the strongest contenders in the compact SUV space. We will be driving the Nexon diesel too so stay tuned to MotorBeam for that. Tata!

The facelift also adds a much needed sunroof giving the cabin an airy feel

What’s Cool

  • Handsome design with great attention to detail
  • Feature-loaded interior with a decent amount of space
  • Powerful petrol and diesel engine options
  • Fantastic ride quality and a feedback-rich steering

What’s Not So Cool

  • Fit & finish at some places needs improvement
  • Petrol engine’s driveability has a lot of room for improvement
  • Infotainment screen could have been brighter and more fluid

Alternatives – Maruti Vitara Brezza, Hyundai Venue, Honda WR-V, Mahindra XUV300, Ford EcoSport

The Nexon is one of the safest compact SUVs on sale today sporting a superb 5-star safety rating

2020 Tata Nexon Specifications

  • Engine: 1199cc, 3-Cyl, Petrol | 1497cc, 4-Cyl, Diesel
  • Power: 120 PS @ 5500 RPM | 110 PS @ 4000 RPM
  • Torque: 170 Nm @ 1750-4000 RPM | 260 Nm @ 1500-2750 RPM
  • Transmission: 6-Speed MT / AMT
  • Fuel Consumption: 10-11 km/l | 15-16 km/l
  • Fuel Type: Petrol | Diesel
  • Tyre Size: 215/60/16 (Front & Rear)
  • Suspension: McPherson Strut (Front), Twist Beam (Rear)
  • Brakes: Disc (Front), Drum (Rear)
  • Safety: 2 Airbags, ABS with EBD, ESP, Traction Control, TPMS, Brake Assist

2020 Tata Nexon Dimensions

  • Overall length x width x height: 3993 mm X 1811 mm X 1606 mm
  • Wheelbase: 2498 mm
  • Boot Space: 350-litres
  • Turning Radius: 5.1-metres
  • Ground Clearance: 209 mm
  • Fuel Tank Capacity: 44-litres
The tri-arrow pattern makes an appearance at several places both inside and outside

Further Reading –

2020 Tata Nexon Video Review

Tata Nexon EV Review

Tata Nexon EV Video Review

Used Tata Nexon – How To Buy

Tata Nexon Long Term Review – First Report

Tata Nexon Long Term Review – Second Report

Tata Nexon Pros & Cons – Video

2017 Tata Nexon Review

Tata Nexon Video Review

Tata Nexon vs Maruti Vitara Brezza – Shootout

Tata Nexon vs Maruti Vitara Brezza vs Ford EcoSport – Video Shootout

Tata Nexon vs Maruti Vitara Brezza – Video Comparison