Tata Manza launch today: diesel Quadrajet and petrol Safire

The Tata Manza would come with interior trim levels and safety features that are seriously tempting.

Tata’s Indigo Vista – now renamed Tata Manza – will be launched in India today.

The car has been long in coming. Sedan versions of the Indica – the Indigo, Indigo CS and even the Indigo XL have been popular, and expectations were sky-high after the launch of the Indica Vista. Tata Motors took their own sweet time indeed, but here it is, finally.

Tata Manza photo: Looks good, doesn't she?
Tata Manza photo: Looks good, doesn't she?

As is the norm with Tata, the Tata Manza would be launched in both diesel and petrol versions. The diesel Manza would, obviously, be powered by the super-famous 1300 cc diesel we all know from so many other cars in India. The 1298 cc engine would produce 90 PS at 4000 rpm, and would offer max torque of 200Nm between 1750 to 3000 rpm. The power would be transmitted to the front wheels via a 5-speed manual transmission.

The petrol engine in the Tata Manza would be a 1368 cc 4- cylinder MPFI, offering the same 90 PS as the diesel, but with 116 Nm torque. Gearbox would be a five speed manual. The petrol Manza is expected to be priced lower than the diesel version. Related story: Tata Indigo Vista

Photo: Tata Manza interior. The Manza offers amazing tri levels for a car in this class.
Photo: Tata Manza interior. The Manza offers amazing trim levels for a car in this class. And safety features such as airbags and ABS.

Aqua, Aura, Aura ABS and Aura+ trims for the Manza

There are four trim levels in which the Manza would be offered – it is easier here to just mention what won’t be available in the low end version. The Aqua has no audio controls on the steering wheel, no Bluetooth, no USB connectivity, and no fuel consumption indicator. Which means – all of them are available on the other versions! A Tata car that offers Bluetooth and steering mounted audio controls? Manza brings much, much happiness to the low end sedan market indeed. The Manza’s Aqua version, I believe, must be targetted at the taxi segment. Not a very wise idea targeting the same car at the consumer segment and the taxi segment at the same time.

I am not going to tell you every single feature that the Tata Manza offers in all its trim levels. But let me assure you that Tata has been very comprehensive in that regard, and you will not be disappointed at all. As far as interior feature levels go, you can confidently say that the Manza can take on many of the high end cars in India which have lower trim levels!! Yes, they are that good, especially the top end Aura (ABS) and Aura+ versions of the Manza. Tata has done a really good job in tempting those who were considering other mid-size sedans, I have to admit.

Tata Manza safety features: ABS and airbags!

Now, that’s a relief. We have always been quite critical of Tata Motors – and every car manufacturer for that matter – who do not offer adequate sefety features. ABS is critical in tricky situations, and we are happy that i is on offer in the Manza. Dual front SRS airbags are available on both Aura (ABS) and Aura+ trim packages. Sweet. The option should be there so at least those who are safety-conscious can buy them.

Suspension

You get independent front suspension in both the versions, and a semi-independent suspension at the rear. Front wheels get disc brakes, while rear gets its stopping power from drum brakes.

The Tata Manza is not exactly a small car – I am not sure, but I think in interior and exterior dimensions, the Manza can score over the Suzuki DZire easily. Tata has always been brilliant at optimising interior space, as has been the case since the very first Tata Indica in India all those years back! The Tata Manza is 4413 mm long, 1703 mm wide, height is 1550 mm and wheelbase is 2520 mm.

Boot capacity is 160 litres, which should more satisfy most Manza owners.

Design

I have not seen the Tata Manza in the flesh – so please take what I say here with a pinch of salt. We have all seen photos of the Manza. Remember – the Indigo always looked like an Indigo with a boot attached as an afterthought, right? The Indica Vista looked solid – even though it looked too much like the original Indica. So what have Tata gone ahead and done now? The boot does not look like it is an addition to the car anymore – it is the bonnet which looks like an addition now!

Now this is a purely personal opinion, and many would probably find nothing wrong. But I think that while the car looks solid and well-integrated from the A-pillar backwards, the bonnet droops too much in hatchback fashion. A bit awkward. Tata’s insistence of sticking with that silly smiley-face grille does not help matters either. I really hope this is just an illusion, and the photos have not done justice to the Tata Manza. I would hate to see such a well-specified car look a little awkward.

Price

At this point we do not know the exact price that Tata has in mind for the Manza. Hold your horses for a few more hours and we will all the info ready for you.