Tata will launch the Zica hatchback on January 20, 2016. Tata’s first all-new car since the Vista, the Zica marks the carmaker’s brand reinvention in the passenger car segment following launches of heavily re-engineered models such as the Bolt and Zest.
The Zica will slot in below the Bolt in the lower segment of the hatchback market, which sees the strong hold of Maruti and Hyundai with the Celerio and i10 respectively.
Tata really needs this to be a winner as currently its compact car sales average is at around 9,000 units per month of the sizeable 1.77 lakh units per month of the total compact segment (eight month average).
Fully aware of this, Tata has adopted a ‘no holds barred’ approach with the Zica and despite it being based on the older Indica platform, Tata has changed virtually everything save for the base floor pan.
The carmaker has given the Zica an all-new family of in-house developed engines, with the petrol motor being an all-aluminium three-cylinder 1.2-litre unit from the Revotron family. The diesel motor is a 1.05-litre unit that is badged Revotorq, expected to be the umbrella brand for future diesels from the manufacturer. This motor is essentially a downsized and modernised three-cylinder version of the Indica’s 1.4-litre diesel unit. The engine is good for 69bhp and 14.27kgm of torque. Both engines are paired to a five-speed manual gearbox though Tata has said that it will be introducing an AMT gearbox in the future.
In terms of features, the top-spec Zica will come equipped with dual front airbags, ABS, corner stability control, fog lamps, alloy wheels, a Harman-sourced audio system with USB, aux and Bluetooth connectivity and smartphone-based navigation (Android) paired to eight speakers.
Tata has already burnt its fingers with the pricing of the Bolt, as many felt it was too expensive. With the Zica, the company will be looking at not repeating the same mistake and is likely to price the base petrol model under Rs 4 lakh (ex-showroom).