Snapshot – Tata Motors is on a churn, both in terms of the kind of passenger vehicles the Indian automaker produces and the personnel who have been helming it. Karl Slym, the British executive who charted out the HORIZONEXT 2020 program is now dead. Ranjit Yadav, who was brought in as Mr. Slym’s deputy has resigned. Mayank Pareek, an ex-Maruti Suzuki staffer is now the head of the Indian automaker’s passenger vehicle division. These personnel changes haven’t affected the launch flurry that Tata Motors is onto though. Utility vehicles has always been a traditional strong suit of Tata Motors. In the next few years, the automaker will go back to its roots. The result? 5 New SUVs. Here’s what you need to know.
Hexa Luxury Crossover
The Hexa luxury crossover is to the Aria what the Bolt is to the Vista. The Aria is a brand new bottle is what the Hexa is and a lot of luxury crossover/MPV buyers seem to be interested, at least gauging from the buzz that the concept managed to create after its Geneva 2015 unveil. Featuring a revised top hat, the Hexa looks like an all-new vehicle from up front. The profile looks similar while the rear has also been revamped. On the inside, 6 seats give the Hexa a very luxurious touch while fit and finish levels have also been ratcheted up. In terms of the mechanicals, the Hexa’s 2.2 liter turbo diesel engine now puts out 156 Bhp-400 Nm, and gets mated to a 6 speed manual gearbox. An early 2016 launch is on the cards.
Nexon Compact Crossover
The Nexon will be Tata Motors’ maiden foray into the sub-4 meter compact crossover segment. The Nexon was showed at the 2014 Indian Auto Expo as a concept, and the crossover will go head to head against the Ford EcoSport. In terms of underpinnings, the Nexon will use the X1 platform. Turbocharged petrol and diesel engine options will be a given, and so will be a front wheel drive layout. A Range Rover Evoque-like stance is what the Nexon’s production version is likely to feature. The festive season of 2016 is when Tata Motors could launch this compact crossover, at a starting price close to the 6 lakh rupee mark.
Raptor/X601 Rugged SUV
Once a leader in the utility vehicle space on the back of the Sumo’s success, Tata Motors has now ceded market share to arch rival Mahindra, whose Bolero range is the de-facto ruler of this space. With the X601 SUV, Tata Motors will aim to wrest back market share from Mahindra. A ladder frame chassis is expected to form the basis of the new people mover from Tata Motors. Not many details about this new product are known at this point in time. An end 2016 launch is said to be in the works.
Q501 5 Seat Luxury SUV
Tata Motors will harvest its partnership with Land Rover to create a two new luxury SUVs, one of which has been code-named the Q501. The buzz in motown suggests that the new SUVs will be previous generation Land Rovers, engineered to meet the stiff price targets that the Indian car buyer expects. In this vein, the previous generation Freelander2 could be watered down to suit the Indian SUV market. The Q501 will seat five and is expected to arrive into India sometime in 2017.
Q502 7 Seat Luxury SUV
The Q502 is a seven seat version from the new crop of luxury SUVs that Tata Motors seeks to build for the Indian audience. The 2 liter Fiat Multijet turbo diesel engine could be added to this SUV. Tata Motors is expected to use the Unibody construction for this vehicle, which is an amalgamation of the ladder frame chassis and monocoque body design. Like the Q501, 2017 is when the Q502 is expected to be launched in India. For now though, little else is known about the new luxury SUV.