Tata Motors has made a presence in almost every important mass-market segment in India, except one. The lineup of Tata Motors lacks a premium compact SUV, which can fill up the huge void present between the Nexon and Harrier SUVs. Tata Motors is working on one such SUV, which for the time being, is being called by its codename – “Blackbird”. Here are some of the possible key highlights of the Tata Blackbird, when it will officially be launched in India:
It will be a premium compact SUV
As expected, the Tata Blackbird will be a premium compact SUV that will slot in between the sub-compact Nexon and midsize Harrier. This new SUV will take on a range of other premium compact SUVs like Hyundai Creta, Kia Seltos, Volkswagen Taigun, Skoda Kushaq, MG Astor, Nissan Kicks and Renault Duster.
Will have a coupe-like design
The new Tata Blackbird will have a coupe-like design, which will be an extended version of the Nexon. While the side profile with door panels might be shared with the Nexon, the front and rear profiles of the Blackbird will be significantly revised over those of the Nexon. The biggest highlight will be the coupe-like roofline, which will have a steeply-flowing design towards the rear. It is believed that the wheelbase of this SUV will be almost 50-70mm more than that of the Nexon, which will make it almost 4.3m long.
It will come with an all-new petrol engine
Currently, the most powerful petrol engine made by Tata Motors is the 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbo-petrol engine, which powers the Nexon. However, Tata Motors is reportedly working on a bigger version of this engine, which will have an extra cylinder and will be almost 1.5-litre in size. Like in the Nexon, this new 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine will be a turbocharged unit, which will make it the biggest turbo-petrol engine in its category. It is believed that this new engine will make 160 bhp of maximum power, which will possibly make it the most powerful engine in its class. This same engine is rumoured to be offered for the Harrier and Safari.
Will share its diesel engine with the Nexon
While the petrol engine will be an advanced version of that of the Nexon, the diesel engine will be shared with the Nexon with no changes to its power and torque figures. This means that the new Tata Blackbird will get a 1.5-litre four-cylinder diesel engine, which produces 110 bhp of power and 260 Nm of torque.
It will get an all-new automatic gearbox option
Currently, the Tata Nexon is offered with a decent 6-speed AMT, while the Tata Harrier is offered with a 6-speed automatic gearbox sourced from Hyundai. For the Blackbird, Tata might skip both these automatic gearbox options for an all-new automatic transmission. While the 6-speed AMT might not make the Blackbird enthusiastic to drive, the 6-speed AT from the Harrier is not the latest solution.
It will also get an EV version
Apart from the conventional petrol and diesel powertrain choices, the new Tata Blackbird will also get an electric vehicle version. This particular version will share its Ziptron electric powertrain with the Nexon EV. However, the Tata Nexon EV itself is going to get an upgraded powertrain with a claimed 400km range, and it is this powertrain that will be plonked in the Blackbird EV.
Will come to India by 2024
The project of Tata Blackbird is still in a very nascent stage and will take some time to take shape. We expect that the new Tata Blackbird will officially arrive in India in 2024.
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