Can I turn my 2005 Tata Indigo into an automatic by taking it to a specialised workshop? I want my wife to learn driving and she gets confused with gear-shifting in traffic.
AAA Theoretically, it is possible, but the long-term reliability of such jobs is still questionable. Automate India (automateindia.in) claims to convert a manual transmission into an automated manual (AMT), which basically does away with the clutch, but you may still need to shift gears. The company though, claims to have a full-fledged AMT setup tested and running on several cars. Investment can be steep – up to Rs 50,000, but the peace of mind you’d get from such a job is not assured. Imagine your wife being stuck in rush-hour traffic due to the system failing!
Get in touch with Automate, get a demo on a car similar to yours (an older-gen car), as compatibility issues are likely to be there compared to the current crop of cars.
Else, we’d suggest you look for a used Santro automatic, which is likely to come within a budget of Rs 1.5 lakh. Your wife can learn to drive, maintenance costs will be low and eventually, she can use the car for some time before you’re ready to upgrade. And at the time of resale, even a year down the road, you’ll lose a maximum of Rs 60,000. The choice is yours.