Did the Nano's low price mean a compromise in passenger safety? One Nano bursts in flames, while others badly overheat. The story inside.

Rumors have been surfacing in India about dangerous problems with the Tata Nano.  One unit of the ultimate entry-level car reportedly burst into flames while being driven in Mumbai.

While being driven home in his new Nano just after taking delivery, Satish Sawant noticed a motorcyclist signaling there was a problem with his car.  Indian Autos Blog reports that the biker furiously pointed to the rear of the car, which was apparently in flames.

"I have no idea what happened," Sawant said.  "The engine was behind me and I did not realise that the car was on fire."

The driver and passenger got out of the car safely.  Firefighters successfully extinguished the flames, and police in the city have begun an investigation.

Vehicles of all types and brands catching fire on their own is nothing new.  However, stories of other Nanos have recently surfaced about smoke emerging from the car's steering column, wheel bearings that spike in temperature, and general overheating.

With the engine in the Nano's rear, it leads one to wonder if the car has the same design flaw as the original Abarth 500.  Owners of the original Abarth 500 had to use a stick to keep the trunk propped open to keep the car from overheating.

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