Tata Motors continues to test the 2015 Kite hatchback, a replacement to the now-dated Indica. The Kite hatchback will be accompanied by a compact sedan, which will replace the Indigo eCS. Here are a rash of new spyshots of the 2015 Kite hatchback spotted testing outside Tata Motors’ Engineering Research Center in Pimpri, off Pune. The Kite hatchback will feature petrol and diesel engines. It will be a budget car that will sit in between the Nano and the to-be-launched Bolt hatchbacks. Expect a sub-3 lakh rupee starting price tag for the Kite hatchback, which is based on a new platform.
The 1.05 liter-3 cylinder turbocharged diesel engine, first seen on the Manza Hybrid, at the 2012 Indian Auto Expo, is touted to be one motor that the Kite hatchback and compact sedan will be powered with. The details of the petrol motor remain unknown for now although the 1.2 liter REVOTRON turbo petrol motor seems to be a good strategic fit as it would give the Kite twins something more to offer than the competition. While five speed manual gearboxes are likely to be standard, an automated manual transmission could also be a part of the variant mix given the growing demand for such an option.
The production of the Kite twins will take place at Tata Motors’ grossly underused Sanand manufacturing facility, in Gujarat. Low sales of the Nano hatchback means that Tata Motors is saddled with unused capacity at Sanand, and this can be put to good use by manufacturing big volume vehicles such as the Kite hatchback and compact sedan. Expect the Kite hatchback to bow into the Indian car market sometime in the middle of next year, while the compact sedan is expected to debut a few months later. The Kite twins are a a part of Tata Motors’ ambitious new HORIZONEXT strategy.