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Bajaj Auto unveils 'four-wheeled rickshaw'

Known for 2-wheelers, Bajaj takes a lesson from Tata's Nano
Bajaj unveils four wheel rickshawEnlarge
Bajaj Auto unveiled a vehicle it described as a "four wheeled auto rickshaw" Tuesday, in a move that could forever change the face of India's roads. (SAJJAD HUSSAIN/AFP/Getty Images)

In a move that could forever change the face of India's roads, Bajaj Auto unveiled a vehicle described as a four-wheeled rickshaw.  Is this the end of the three-wheeler?

Observers have long awaited the Bajaj vehicle, which was tabbed as a competitor for Tata Motors' Nano when the hype for the "world's cheapest car" was the greatest.  But Bajaj insisted Tuesday that its first four-wheeler is "not a car" -- perhaps noting the dismal sales figures that the Nano has put up, reports the Hindustan Times.

Managing director Rajiv Bajaj told reporters, “It is not an incremental but dramatic improvement over a three wheeler. There are over 5 million Bajaj three wheelers in the country today. Thats the market we are aiming for.”

Unveiled at the ongoing Auto Expo in New Delhi, the non-car is called the RE60.  Bajaj didn't name its price, but said it can seat up to four people, has a maximum speed of 70 kilometres per hour and gets up to 35 kilometers per liter of gasoline. It has a turning radius of 3.5 meters and a 200cc, fuel-injected, four-valve engine.

Here's hoping it can get up the "hills" of New Delhi's flyovers faster than the three-wheeled variety of rickshaw.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/the-rice-bowl/bajaj-auto-unveils-four-wheeled-rickshaw