Companies

To take on rivals, Tata Motors developing fuel-efficient vehicles

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on March 12, 2018

Mr Ratan Tata.

Upbeat on Nano compact car; new models of Range Rover soon





Tata Motors’ Chairman, Mr Ratan Tata, has said that the company is working on a new line of fuel-efficient commercial vehicles.

This is part of a strategy to help the country’s largest automaker (by revenues) guard its leadership in the domestic commercial vehicle space in the face of new competition from larger global players such as Germany’s Daimler AG, Sweden’s Volvo and the US-based Navistar.

“In the coming years, Tata Motors’ predominance in commercial vehicles will be challenged. A new line of very competitive, fuel-efficient vehicles is being developed by Tata Motors to meet the competition head-on,” Mr Tata said in the Chairman’s statement, which was a part of Tata Motors’ FY12 Annual Report.

Nano holds promise

In terms of the automaker’s passenger vehicle range, he maintained his confidence on the future of the Nano compact car. The Nano, which is built at a purpose-built facility at Sanand (Gujarat), has seen sales grow marginally by one per cent (22,140 units) in the April-June 2012 period.

“The fundamental economies of the Nano will continue to establish itself in the Indian market with a wider sales and service network. The potential market for such an affordable car is enormous throughout the developing world,” Mr Tata said.

Mr Tata added that in the car market, Tata Motors “will need to address the marketplace more effectively with its existing and future products in order to regain the level of market share that it earlier enjoyed”.

Domestic sales of its passenger cars, such as the Indica and Indigo ranges, have dropped nine per cent to 49,576 units between April and June this year. Utility vehicles sales have also dipped three per cent to 9,621 units in the same period, though this segment has grown 51 per cent (1.17 lakh units) on the rising popularity of diesel vehicles and new models.

JLR model portfolio

On the UK-based luxury vehicle division of Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), Mr Tata said that the model portfolio is being significantly widened, while new higher-powered and more fuel-efficient engines are being developed. A new manufacturing facility is also being considered in China, which will reportedly be a joint venture with Chery.

“The company (JLR) has undertaken its most ambitious product development program in its history, and will be launching several new sports sedans and sports cars in the next two years.

“Face-lifted and new models of the Range Rover as well as a competitively-priced new line of rugged, lifestyle vehicles under the Land Rover brand are also scheduled to be launched,” he said.

Mr Tata is soon expected to vacate the Tata Group Chairman’s seat for Mr Cyrus Mistry, the MD of construction major, Shapoorji Pallonji Group. The Mistry family is one of the largest shareholders and a long-time board member of Tata Sons.

>roudra.b@thehindu.co.in

Published on July 13, 2012

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