The Tata Hexa is all set to hit showrooms with a launch likely by the end of this year. The MPV will replace the Aria and it will be powered by the same 2.2-litre Varicor 400 diesel engine offered with the Safari Storme. However, Tata will be introducing a 1.9-litre diesel engine as well. Sources say the new motor will be offered with the Hexa and Safari Storme, with both models expected to get it in the first half of 2017.
The 1.9-litre diesel will be tuned for better fuel efficiency than outright performance and is not a replacement for the current 2.2-litre unit. While the Hexa will get the engine with 6-speed manual and automatic transmissions, the Storme will get only the manual.
Reports of Tata working on a smaller diesel engine to counter the Delhi diesel ban came in earlier this year and while the ruling has now been revoked, the fate of high-displacement diesel engines still remains a bit of a grey area.
Mahindra was quick to introduce a 1.99-litre diesel with the XUV500 and Scorpio to work around the ban, with the resized engine being introduced in March this year. Toyota didn’t rework its existing 2.4 or 2.8-litre diesel units, but instead introduced a 2.7-litre petrol engine to counter the anti-diesel sentiment. On that front, Mahindra is also expected to launch a petrol engine for the XUV500 and Scorpio, but Tata has no such plans for the time being.
The Hexa will primarily rival the Toyota Innova Crysta, which has attributed 50 per cent of its sales to the automatic variant. Given the Innova’s reputation, Tata will have to get very aggressive with the Hexa’s price to ensure a successful sales run.