After nearly a year of launching the facelifted versions of the GO and GO+, Datsun is back in action with a new offering on the two models. The company has prepared automatic transmissions for the both the hatchback as well as the MPV. While the Renault Nissan Alliance does have an AMT on offer, which would presumably be a more cost effective solution, Datsun has opted to go forward with a CVT that will offer efficient and convenient motoring. Auto Tech Review got a chance to sample both the GO & GO+ on the crowded streets of Chennai to the open highways near Orgadam. Here is our take on the new powertrain being offered on the Datsun GO and GO+.
POWERTRAIN & PERFORMANCE
The only update to the powertrain remains the new Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) that is married off to the 1.2 l petrol motor powering the manual variants. Datsun has continued using its HR12 DE naturally aspirated 12V three cylinder motor featuring a dual overhead cam layout. Mated to the CVT transmission, the engine has been enhanced to offer 77 PS of power that comes in late at 6,000 rpm. While there has been a significant bump up in power, because of the characteristics of the CVT, one does not really feel this over the manual transmission variants.
That said, the CVT is all about comfort and not so much about performance. While commuting on the crowded streets, we were at ease behind the wheel. The creep function works well for slow moving bumper to bumper traffic and surprisingly good fuel average figures ensure an efficient drive through your commutes. For the GO with the CVT option, Datsun has published ARAI certified figures of 20.07 km/l while for the GO+ the company has reported a figure of 19.41 km/l. These figures also bolster the capability of both the GO and GO+ as convenient and economical options.
Moving over to the performance of the transmission, the naturally aspirated motor is a delight to drive on open stretches with the engine revving away happily when you push it hard. What does come associated with the transmission is a loud humming from the engine bay, permeating into the cabin when you push the engine hard. That said, at city speeds and cruising on highways, the NVH seems to have been optimised and is not annoying in the least. If you want to get going in a hurry, this is not the car for you. Floor the accelerator and it will take time to build up momentum but can happily sustain the higher speeds.
To summarise the findings, the GO and GO+ with the CVT are essentially an ideal choice for those looking to get a cost efficient, economical and convenient car that you can happily potter around the city in. The suspensions that are softly sprung are adept at tackling most undulations and bumps. While throwing this car about on winding roads and corners can be an interesting experience, one should be prepared for a noticeable amount of roll.
FITMENT & PACKAGE
To make it enticing to the average consumer, Datsun has also updated the colour schemes to offer an all-black on the GO and a beige and black on the GO+. Additionally the car also gets a 7-inch touch screen unit that is enabled with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
Datsun is also offering safety functions such as dual airbags, ABS with EBD and Brake Assist, rear parking sensors and driver/ passenger seatbelt reminder as standard fitment. Both the GO and GO+ have now been developed to comply with side crash and pedestrian protection regulations.
Seating space inside the cabins is great for four adults in the GO and for four adults plus two children in the GO+. The quality of materials used in the cabin look decent and are arguably better than what has been witnessed previously from the manufacturer.
With ample of cubby holes and storage spaces, the GO with a CVT is great option for the first time buyer who is looking for a value for money option that is light on the pocket yet gets a few essential features.
While two pedal technology has been gaining traction amongst the masses in tier 1 & 2 cities, the choice of automatic transmission primarily remains AMTs simply because they are cost effective solutions. The CVT being offered on the Datsun GO and GO+ will only be available with the top two variants T & T (O). We estimate prices for these to hover at least Rs 50,000 over the counterparts with the manual transmission.