India Watch : Tata Motors may use JLR’s expertise for new models
Nandini Sen Gupta, The Economic Times, 30th August, 2010
Speaking to The Economic Times, P M Telang, Tata Motors’ Managing Director – India Operations, said: “We know we need to improve our car operations in terms of fits, finishes, noise, vibration and design elements. That’s where Jaguar Land Rover can help us.” Indeed, JLR engineers were invited to take a look at the Nano following complaints of the car catching fire.
“We invited a group of engineers from JLR to join 20 engineers from Tata Motors and forensic experts and examine the Nano closely. They did a thorough job and came to the conclusion that there’s no design problems or faulty components with the Nano and that the instances of the car catching fire are stray instances.”
We know we need to improve our car operations in terms of fits, finishes, noise, vibration and design elements. That’s where Jaguar Land Rover can help us.” P M Telang, Managing Director – India Operations, Tata Motors Limited
The car drive is also crucial for Tata Motors’ plans for the Asean market although it has, for now, pulled out of the Thai eco car project for which it was selected. “The Thai project had certain pre-conditions which didn’t work for us,” Mr Telang said. “But Asean will be a large and important market for Tata Motors, and cars will be an important part of that.”
Although he refused to talk about future models and platforms under development except to say “Tata Motors will examine each market segment and see if it has products to cater to them”, people close to the company say Tata Motors is already building another small car to be positioned between the Nano and the Indica to take on the Suzuki Alto’s 2.5 lakh units a year market.
There are a lot of synergies with JLR — we can add value to their operations and they can add value to ours… If JLR can pitch in to make Tata cars more refined, Tata Motors will help JLR cut costs and get more sourcing benefits.” P M Telang, Managing Director – India Operations, Tata Motors Limited
JLR currently sources its engines from Ford, a throwback to its days as a Ford subsidiary. Tata Motors is also looking to assemble Land Rovers in India in an effort to push up volumes from the brand. Tata Motors has earlier explored product development synergies with its overseas subsidiaries like Tata Daewoo or Hispano Carrocera.
“The Prima range of trucks is a joint development between Tata Daewoo and Tata Motors. Similarly, there are joint development projects and synergies being worked out at Hispano Carrocera. So, JLR will follow suit,” said Mr Telang. “If JLR can pitch in to make Tata cars more refined, Tata Motors will help JLR cut costs and get more sourcing benefits,” he added.