Tata Motors is putting together two new SUVs, code-named Q501 and Q502, for launch in Indian and export car markets. The new Tata SUVs are expected to arrive in 2017, and will be based on Land Rover platforms. While the Q501 will be a five seater, the Q502 will be a seven seater. Both the new Tata SUVs are expected to be ladder framed models, with price positioning to command a decided premium position, in-between 16-25 lakh rupees.
This positioning will also mean that the new Land Rover inspired Tata SUVs will be the flagship models in the Indian utility vehicle giant’s product line up. The SUVs’ platform could come from Land Rover models such as the existing Freelander2 and the Discovery SUV, both of which will be replaced soon by new generation models. Using retired Land Rover platforms will give Tata Motors a lower cost structure, with the obvious advantage of using a tried and tested set up.
Diesel power is expected to be at the forefront of Tata Motors’ Land Rover derived premium SUVs. The 2.2 liter DICOR turbo diesel engine, in a higher state of tune could power both SUVs while an automatic transmission and a four wheel drive function with multiple modes such as low and high range, are expected to be offered on the new crop of premium SUVs.
Each year, Tata Motors plans to sell and export about 80,000 units of both the Land Rover derived SUVs. This low number indicates that Tata Motors is working on a premium positioning strategy for the new, Land Rover derived SUV range. Also, the Indian automaker is said to have overcome the cost and positioning hurdles, which had put a spanner in its Land Rover derived SUV plans.
The two new SUVs from Land Rover are a part of Tata Motors’ Horizonnext 2020 program, which envisages a completely new product line up, in both design and platform terms. The Horizonext program also aims to cut costs by using the Advanced Modular Platform (AMP) across many Tata cars while also gunning for two, all-new car launches each year.