The Indigo CS is a car sandwiched between a hatchback and a sedan. Besides the boot crop and changes to the exterior. The mirrors have chrome strips that liven up their look. The profile is identical to the Indigo's, but differs from it when you reach the rear end. The tail-lamp of the car too is redesigned and Tata was able to squeeze in a boot just under the regulation size of four metres to qualify for an excise cut and pass on the attractive price to the consumer.
The passengers will have no cause for complaint with the space on offer, but the driver will not agree. The steering wheel is slightly too large and at too van/truck-like an angle for comfort, the pedals are placed awkwardly and the gear shift lever is too short. The switches for the power windows are also placed in an awkward position, ahead of the shift lever at its base. This is a feature seen in the Indica turbo line of cars. The fit and finish of the plastic could have been so much better with a little attention to detail and panel fit. The rear doors don't have pockets, but they house ashtrays. The boot is not much larger than a hatchback's, and the usable space is intruded upon by the suspension's strut towers. Some of the stalks and plastic bits feel worse than some of the older Indicas now and we wish that Tata could get the plastics quality spot-on once and for all.
The 1396cc common-rail turbodiesel generates 70bhp@4000rpm and 140Nm@1800rpm. There is not much turbo lag thanks to the variable geometry turbo. The torque is spread thicker than the pile of a monarch’s carpet, but the power dies off quite suddenly beyond 4000rpm. It is a little slow-witted below 1800rpm despite the high-tech turbo, but it pulls without complaint which makes the car drivable. The lack of weight and generous spread of torque from the variable-geometry turbo helped keep engine revs low and fuel efficiency high in the CS DiCOR. A city figure of 12.8kpl mated to a highway figure of 17.9kpl meant a respectable overall figure of 14.1kpl.
The Indigo CS rides really very well in the city, absorbing all but the biggest bumps and potholes without transmitting shocks into the cabin. The suspension does transmit a fair bit of noise to the occupants. The car grips well enough, but it isn’t confidence-inspiring in corners, what with the body roll and numb steering. One peculiar thing is that the car does get affected by crosswinds or sudden gusts if you overtake someone at relatively high speed - 140kmph +. You can almost feel the rear want to step out of line and this may have something to do with the aerodynamics thanks to the stubby new rear end and not the suspension setup.
The brakes are powerful, but it’s hard to use them effectively when there isn’t much feel through them. There is resistance through the pedal, but it doesn’t progress well. The initial bite is quite soft, but a few days of driving around will get you acclimatised. The positioning of the pedal also leads to discomfort. The CS runs on 175/65 R14 Apollo Amazer XL tyres. The car does not come with ABS or Airbags. The car is under the five lakh bracket as Tata has been successful in keeping the car under 4 metres thus taking advantage of the government’s excise cuts.
The car is available in seven attractive colours, namely Scarlet Red, Sparkling Gold, Mica Grey, Carbon Black, Cosmic Blue, Mint White and Arctic Silver. The car with the boot chopped off is a great run on the city roads and there is still ample space in the boot to pack up and head out for that weekend holiday. The diesel variant gives a fuel economy of 14 kmpl in the city and 19 kmpl on the highway. The car is a breeze to ride and it does justice to the price it is offered at. The price of the Indigo Cs begins at 4.4 lakh. The car is good value for money and is definitely a complete family car.
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