The Tata Harrier will become much affordable in the second half of this year, thanks to the introduction of a petrol engine. Following the Tata Harrier petrol, there will also be a Tata Gravitas petrol with the same engine.
The Tata Harrier petrol and Tata Gravitas petrol will employ a 1.5-litre, direct-injection turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine. This engine will likely develop over 150 HP of maximum power. It will be a bigger version of the 1.2-litre Revotron unit of the Tata Nexon.
The latest development has been confirmed by Rajendra Petkar, Chief Technology Officer, Tata Motors. "We’ve always had the four-cylinder version of this engine in mind," he said. "And with 65-70 percent of Nexon sales now going to a petrol, this is the next step," he added.
The Tata Harrier petrol will be offered with selectable drive modes. A 6-speed manual transmission will be standard at launch. Later, an automatic transmission will be introduced as an option in the 5-seat C-SUV as well as the seven-seater based on it - the Tata Gravitas petrol. The petrol-automatic configurations will include paddle shifters as well, and maybe even a 'Sport' mode.
The introduction of the petrol engine option in the Tata Harrier should significantly increase its demand. The fact that more than half of the MG Hector units sold in India are specified with a petrol engine is a clear indicator that C-SUV buyers in India have a high preference for a petrol engine because they make them cheaper to own and maintain. 10,448 units out of the total 19,060 units sold in the July 2019-January 2020 period were specified with a petrol engine.
Tata Motors is considering various variants of the 1.5-litre petrol engine for the future. It can make a variant with a variable geometry turbocharger and bump the maximum power to over 160 HP, should there be a need for more performance. When the CAFE norms come into effect in 2022, the company will be able to equip it with a mild-hybrid technology and thus lower the average CO2 emissions of its line-up.
The Tata Harrier petrol will likely be priced from under INR 13 lakh (ex-showroom India). The prices of the Tata Harrier diesel start at INR 13.69 lakh (ex-showroom India).