2018 Datsun Go & Go Plus Review: The Datsun Go and Go Plus entered the market in two consecutive years', with the Go first debuting in 2014. The Datsun GO, which brought a fresh new design, tall-boy styling to the entry level hatch segment quickly became came to the forefront for being a fresh new offering. However, Datsun then still nascent in the Indian market failed to impress in the after sales, and a lack of a robust dealer/spare parts network. . Datsun followed the Go with an estate version that they called the Datsun Go Plus in 2015. Once again, the car sparked initial interest before slowly fading away. Now 3 years after the Go Plus, Datsun has taken another stab at the segment with the 2018 Datsun Go and Datsun Go Plus. Both cars are essentially the same, save for about 200mm of additional length and an extra row of seats for the Go Plus Amazingly, despite this the Go Plus just adds twenty kilos to the kerb weight of the Go. Datsun have been very intelligent in the way that they have upgraded the cars so as to not make them more expensive while ensuring their customer in this price-sensitive side of the market gets high value for his or her money. In that sense, Datsun has focused on three key areas: Exterior Styling, Interior Features and Safety. We flew down to Chennai to find out what both these two new cars are like. Here's what we found out.
Datsun Go and Go Plus: Design
Speaking of the cars' dimensions, the new Datsun Go and Go Plus retain the same footprint as the car that it replaces. In fact, most of the styling cues are similar. Datsun have just focused on minor details to make the car look fresher. For one, the Datsun Go and Go Plus now feature new 14-inch wheels which not only do a better job of filling up the wheel arches better but also add a bit more stability to both cars. The diamond-cut alloy wheels on our top-trim test car looked great and add a certain premium appeal to the cars too. The new LED DRLs in the fog lamp recess do their part in contributing to the up-scale facade although one does question the realistic usability of these DRL fog lamps. The 2018 Datsun Go and Go Plus get minor tweaks to bumper design as well although blink and you might miss it. In summation, these tweaks really do a good job of adding a fresh outlook to both cars, without really changing the design of the car entirely.
Datsun Go & Go Plus: Engine & Performance & Dynamics
Under the hood, both, the Go and Go Plus use the same 1.2-litre Motor as the outgoing car with 74 HP and 104 Nm of Torque. Now the motor was always one of the Datsun stronger suits, and Datsun have been wise not to tweak it. It's not very refined, it has a little bit of a rasp but it's quite a likeable rasp. The peppy motor is a pleasure to drive and is quick to respond to your right foot. 104Nm of torque ensures that the pull away is clean, even on slight inclines without really having to stomp your foot. Datsun claims a 0-100 time of 13.3 seconds for the Datsun Go and Go plus which is the best in its class. The peppy motor is a little bit of trade-off considering the Go and Go Plus only manage a 19 kmpl fuel average in the ARAI cycle. We expect this to drop to around 15 in a real-world test. With the aggregate fuel efficiency in this segment still fairly above the 20 kmpl marks, Datsun is a little sub-par in this case. Although we feel it's a fair trade off, if you don't mind spending a few extra rupees on your fuel bill every month for a little extra punch. The Datsun Go and Go Plus also carry forward the 5-speed gearbox from the previous car and while the short setup might feel great on an open road, I can see it become annoying in heavy city traffic. Although we expect that Datsun will soon have an AMT version to take care of this.
In terms of dynamics, the Datsun suspension setup does a good job of absorbing most undulations from the road although sharp bumps at spirited speeds come with an unsettlingly loud thud that comes right into the cabin. While the Go handles corners more or less commendable, the Datsun Go does tend to get a bit nervous trying to haul it's elongated rear through twisty bits. Once again, neither of these cars were made to be corner carvers so it's far from a deal-breaker. The introduction of ABS adds a bit of surety to the brakes, and that's a big thing considering that ABS will be available on across all variants as a standard feature.
Datsun Go & Go Plus: Interiors and Safety:
The interiors have been the prime area of focus for the Datsun Go and Go Plus upgrades and they have worked. Step into either car and the massive 7-inch Blaupunkt touchscreen infotainment system grabs your eyes. Honestly, the feedback and the quality of this system is a few grades above what we usually see in this segment and that makes the interior experience a whole few points better. Android Auto and Apple Carplay support add a few more brownie points. This aside our top-trim test car got faux leather seat covers (orange and black in the Go, and all-black in the Go Plus). The other big plus on the new Datsun siblings is the addition of a properly usable glove box and some more functional cubbies.
The headline, however, in this update is the fact that both the Datsun Go and Go Plus is the addition of ABS, dual front airbags and reverse parking sensors as standard across the range. This is a big deal, considering that we have just come to learn that even the Hyundai Santro which will launch this month will come with these features only at the topmost variant.
Datsun Go and Go Plus Conclusion
Datsun have a long way to go before they fully establish themselves in the Indian market. Tier 2 and 3 level visibility and a stronger dealer and service network is something that they will have to work on. Datsun are well aware of this reality, and they also realise that based on past experience, customers might not find the motivation to pick a Datsun product in a market full of time-tested brands. With the Go and Go plus Datsun have gone out of their way to ensure that the Customer gets the best possible bargain for his money along with a product that is in the very least at par segment standards (if not slightly better). Add that to a full two-year warranty on purchase and a different design approach and we think they have two refreshed cars that are capable of bringing some fresh enthusiasm to the sales charts.
|D||Rs 3.29 lakh||Rs 3.83 lakh|
|A||Rs 3.99 lakh||Rs 4.53 lakh|
|A (O)||Rs 4.29 lakh||Rs 5.05 lakh|
|T||Rs 4.49 lakh||Rs 5.30 lakh|
|T (O)||Rs 4.89 lakh||Rs 5.69 lakh|