TATA MOTORS (NANO) - Lateral Thinking

Tata motors deputed its R&D team led by Dr. Tambe, of the R&D team along with others, to attend a workshop on Lateral Thinking in Mumbai in 2005 facilitated by Dr Sunil Gupta. The focus was on learning the tools of Lateral Thinking and applying the ideas in developing a new car for Tata Motors. The car was proposed to be priced at under Rs. 100, 000 (USD 2000) as this was the dream of the chairman Mr. Ratan Tata.

Easy use of several tools led the team to generate multiple ideas. They challenged a traditional Motor car using the tools of Challenge, Random Word and PO.

    Using Why C/B/A some of the ideas generated during the workshop included:
  • One wiper blade 7 arm instead of 2,
  • Spare wheel, jack and spanner as an accessory,
  • Reduction in one gear of the gearbox,
  • Change in the materials used for different parts/components,
  • Size of the car,
  • Removal of certain other accessories like cigarette lighter etc.

The team obtained primary ideas to work on using the tools of Lateral Thinking. The project at this stage was called “The Rs. One lakh car” (Rs. 1,00,000) and the brand name NANO was conceived much later without our involvement. The Car was launched successfully early 2009.