After a three-year hiatus, Tata Motors, India’s fourth largest car maker, will launch two all-new products next year to give its sagging portfolio a much needed fillip.
The Mumbai-based company will unveil a hatchback and compact sedan at the Auto Expo in February followed by their commercial launch.
The new hatchback (codenamed Falcon 4) will sit alongside its existing Indica and Vista models and the company ruled out any phase out of either of the two models.
Similarly the new compact sedan (codenamed Falcon 5) will complement the Indigo CS, the country’s first compact sedan, having length of under four meters.
Ranjit Yadav, president, passenger vehicle business unit, Tata Motors said, “We have planned a portfolio where we will be bringing new vehicle every year up to 2020. Next year we will launch completely new cars. It will have a completely new DNA with modified platforms, new attributes, powertrains and design language. These cars are actually for the global markets so we will launching them first in India and then take them to select international markets from 2015.”
Both the new models will have design and styling that would be very different from any of Tata Motors’ existing models, helped by feedback from some potential customers and dealers, according to Yadav.
While the existing Vista uses a platform that is not the same as the ageing Indica, a new model launch in the hatchback segment will be the first in the segment by the company in more than five years.
Tata Motors has been slow in bringing new products to the market. Even the multi-seater, premium utility vehicle Aria, which is a totally new product, was launched three years ago.
In comparison the gap between the launch of Sail, Sail UVA and the Enjoy by General Motors was less than a year. Maruti Suzuki, India’s largest car maker, launched two new models, Alto 800 and the Stingray, in a space of less than ten months.
The company refused to share details about the price of the two vehicles but reassured that none of the existing models will be pulled out of the production.
“We are not looking to replace any of our current brands. There are opportunities and spaces for us to address. These are high performance vehicles with a differentiated feature and new driving dynamics”, added Yadav.
While the Indica is priced at Rs 453,480, the more expensive Vista is available at Rs 472,474 (both prices, ex-showroom, Mumbai). There is presently a huge price gap between the Nano and the Indica with a total lack of any product offering by the company.
The present Indigo CS uses the same platform as the Indica and is priced at Rs 510,340 (ex-showroom, Mumbai). This compact sedan, which was launched in 2008, eventually replaced the regular Indigo as sales of the latter dwindled.
The new compact sedan will boost Tata Motors presence further in the segment, which sees monthly sales of more than 10,000 units. Apart from the Indigo CS, Honda’s Amaze is one of the only two models present in the segment.
Tata Motors has developed a new turbo-charged 1.2 litre petrol engine for the two new models, looking at the demand trend swinging back in favour of petrol. Tata Motors developed this engine in partnership with companies in UK and Korea.
Also on offer will be the same 1.3 litre Fiat developed multi-jet diesel engine seen on the Vista and the Manza.
“We have been working on a portfolio for a while, so we have sharpened and crafted it. Most of the work on these new models done is in-house. We will see a difference in design. We believe we have designs which are contemporary for the next five years”, added Yadav.
On the back of recording its biggest quarterly stand-alone net loss of Rs 803 crore Tata Motors in the September quarter, Tata Motors continues to be the biggest struggler in the passenger vehicle industry.
As per data released by Siam, Tata Motors recorded a 35% drop in sales during the April-October period at 128,263 units as against the same period last year. The company is looking to regain most of its lost ground with the help of these two new launches.
Courtesy: Tata Motors lines up two new car launches for next year | Business Standard