Tata Motors’ image revamp is in full swing, with its products featuring a new design language and new-age tech as well. The change was also expected to include the brand’s foray into the performance hatchback segment with the Bolt Sport. While the concept was showcased at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show and this year’s Delhi Auto Expo, it looks like the plans for a production model have been shelved. Instead, Tata is expected to launch a performance-spec Tiago, which could be named the 'Tiago Plus'.
Sources say the model could be launched as early as this November, though the brand has not confirmed this, stating that it does not comment on future products. Tata could either use the same engine that would power the Bolt Sport which produces 120PS or employ a turbocharged and remapped version of the 3-cylinder ‘Revotron’ petrol engine currently used in the Tiago. In its current state of tune, the engine produces 85PS of power and 114Nm of torque. However, as is the case with small ‘boosted’ engines, turbo-lag will have to be addressed, especially considering the economy-centric behaviour of the standard motor.
So why has Tata chosen the Tiago over the Bolt? In all likelihood, it’s because the Bolt hasn’t received a strong enough response for a high-performance variant to do any better. The car currently averages less than 1,000 sales a month, while the Tiago has been well-received with monthly sales of around 3,000 units. Tata would stand to benefit by offering another version of the Tiago to capitalize on the model’s on-going success. Additionally, the performance hatch could undercut the likes of the Baleno RS and Abarth Punto