Team-BHP member 'DiscoverWild' has uploaded pictures of a prototype of the Tata Aquilla at a fuel station in Coimbatore. The prototype appears to have production-ready lamps, alloy wheels and interior, and it could be Jayem Automotive, who are consultants for Tata Motors in product development, performing some part of the testing and validation.
Meanwhile, Tata Motors’ electrification plan for the domestic market includes the rollout of MHEVs. According to Team-BHP forum member RavenAvi, who has had a good track record with scoops, the company will offer a mild-hybrid system as an option in the 45X (codename: X451) hatchback.
RavenAvi says that the Tata 45X, which is referred to as the ‘Tata Aquilla’, is powered by a 1.2-litre naturally aspirated three-cylinder petrol engine. This is an all-new BS6-ready petrol engine, not the Tata Tiago and Tata Tigor’s Revotron unit that produces 85 PS at 6,000 rpm and 114 Nm of torque at 3,500 rpm. It could feature a 48-volt mild-hybrid system that assists in acceleration and provides idle start-stop function. Another benefit of mild-hybrid systems is the reduction in CO2 emissions, a factor to consider given the entry of the CAFE standards early next decade.
Tata Motors European Technical Centre (TMETC) will likely have a hand in the Tata 45X’s all-new 1.2-litre petrol engine’s development. The 48-volt mild-hybrid system of this engine may come from TMETC. The UK-based R&D centre has already presented a project of two different mild-hybrid systems codenamed ‘P0’ and ‘P2’.
Following its debut in the Tata 45X, the mild-hybrid system could feature in the Tata Nexon, for which an electrified variant is already in the rumour mill, the Tata X452 sedan (Maruti Ciaz rival), the Tata Hornbill (Maruti Ignis rival) and the Tata Harrier.
Back to the Tata 45X, there’s no word on the diesel engine option yet, but expect the BSVI-compliant version of the Tata Nexon’s 1.5-litre Revotorq unit to be kept ready. The launch is scheduled during the festive season next year. The new model will replace the Tata Bolt and lock horns with the Maruti Baleno facelift and the next-gen Hyundai i20.