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Tata Megapixel four-ward thinking


Tata has unveiled the tiny Megapixel technology concept at Geneva motor show.

Based on the Pixel concept that starred for the Indian carmaker at Geneva last year, the Megapixel is a pointer to the brand’s future styling and a speculator of future technology features.

The 3.5-metre microcar is powered by four independent electric motors – one in each wheel – which combine to give a very muscular 369 Nm of torque, but doesn’t get it much past 100km/h.

The quad motor set allows the wheels to steer and turn separately when parking, so you can spin the car in its own footprint. Tata calls the function the Zero Turn, saying the Megapixel can execute a 2.8-metre radius.

The motors are powered by a 13kWh lithium-ion phosphate battery pack, which recharges through a wireless induction system - you park the car over the charging mat and walk away.

A full charge gives you 85km of driving, but a petrol-fuelled generator onboard recharge on the move to extend the range to 900km – with a claimed fuel economy of 1.0-litre per 100km and an astonishing emissions count of just 22g/km (about a quarter of the Toyota Prius).

The dashboard features a smartphone dock linked to a touchscreen interface that also controls airconditioning, audio and other features. The four doors swing and slide out of the way along the car body to wipe out parking lot pressure instead of the next-door car’s paintwork, and with no central pillar there’s easy access for even a man-sized body into the Megapixel’s micro body.

Will it go into production? Unlikely. But what’s on the cards is seeing some of those features developed on future cars as congestion and emissions pressure increases.