The Indian car market has been plagued by problems pertaining to waning customer demand and flagging sales of cars. However, some companies like Honda, Volkswagen and Hyundai have been walking away with a major share of the pie in recent times. Tata Motors, the homegrown entity responsible for spearheading much of automotive development earlier in the sector, has also fallen behind due to these reasons and more. Some of the products brought out by the company are not doing well now in terms of sales and marketing volumes. Alongside, there have been accusations from customers with regard to the boring styling, cheap material quality and below par performance of some vehicles.
It is not a growing assumption that Tata cars are not that fun to drive and they are also regarded as boring or too conventional in some ways. As a result, the company has been slipping up and the trademark Nano has also failed to draw in the crowds as expected. This is prompting the company to a make some new moves in the car market. The company is looking at stabilizing its market share and wooing customers with newer innovations, products and feature tweaks. Will the company be able to woo customers back to its once highly acclaimed vehicles? Only time will tell and here are some latest news on Tata’s plans for the Indian car market.
Tata is rumored to be working closely with the company it bought, Jaguar Land Rover with regard to developing a flagship vehicle for India. While this is welcome news for the Indian automobile industry at large, it remains to be seen how far this can be a reality. Ever since the company purchased Jaguar Land Rover in the year 2008, these companies have started collaborating with regard to production, design and development. Yet, another big step might be in the offing according to inside sources and latest developments. According to recent reports, Land Rover and Tata may just be collaborating on creating a SUV especially for the Indian market. This SUV project is currently being kept under wraps and it has already garnered considerable interest from both industry followers and SUV enthusiasts.
According to major market reports and other statistics, these two companies are working hard to create a passenger SUV which can seat five or seven passengers at a time. This might just be based and inspired by the platform present in the Land Rover Freelander. This is known as the LR2 in many other parts of the globe and this may well be used for this car. While no mechanical and construction activities have started as of yet, the study for the project and its feasibility index is about to conclude and this augurs well for the upcoming development of this vehicle. This SUV should be hitting roads by approximately 2016 or even 2017 depending on the scale of production and the internal resources allocated for the same.
According to Jaguar Land Rover sources, this SUV should be different from the existing Freelander to the tune of 50 to 85 percent which is a huge figure in itself! However, the existing Land Rover genes will reign supreme along with unmatched quality which is a staple of JLR itself. The SUV could come at a price range of approximately $33, 209 to $41, 511 which stands at between 2 to 2.5 million rupees in Indian currency terms. This joint project could also see the making of two different vehicles. The Tata SUV would primarily cater to the Indian mass market while the Land Rover model would be a premium and sophisticated vehicle in question. Sharing of resources and components will enable the companies to keep the prices of both these vehicles as low as possible which should make them big successes in the price sensitive Indian car market.
Many more joint projects are in the offing according to company sources and industry insiders. This could just be the first of many such collaborations to come in the future. According to executives at both Tata and Jaguar Land Rover, collaborations might be afoot for developing even a common engine in the near future which will represent a great development of sorts. The Indian car brand is working hard to elevate its status in Asian markets and depending on Jaguar Land Rover will pay off immensely in this regard. This is great news for the Tata brand in India and will definitely help it reach out to customers in a totally different avatar of sorts.
Tata’s diesel Tata Nano is another innovation that the company is betting heavily on to stabilize its position in the entry level hatchback space. The Tata Nano, though initially popular, has not taken off as well as the company would have liked. The diesel powered Nano comes with a turbo diesel twin cylinder 800 cc engine. The new engine gives the Nano unmatched fuel economy in the Indian market and it should be the cheapest and most fuel efficient vehicle to own in India, something that will give it a shot in the arm in recent times. The Nano should be returning at least 82 miles to 94 miles for every gallon as per US cycle estimates.
Tata is also looking at introducing a new hatchback with European studio styling templates and inputs incorporated into it. This will be the new hatchback style body for the Nano according to industry insiders and market sources. This will provide access to the back of the car right from outside. Tata is also looking at bringing out a food door sedan version of the Nano if possible. The hatchback and sedan will both have more powerful and considerably bigger engines. The latter should be dishing out more than 100 horsepower ideally while the hatch should come with a 1.2 liter turbo or the 1.3 liter from Fiat’s stables. Innovation is the name of the game with regard to success in the Indian car market now and Tata sure seems on the right path!