The Indian car market is known for its variety of car options available. Starting from cheap hatchbacks and ending at expensive exotics, India has all. But the majority of people in India are middle-class. Find out below about the Evolution of Tata Sumo in India.
History and First Gen.
The Tata Sumo was launched in 1994 as a ten-seater rear-wheel drive SUV. It was mainly made for rural India and military uses. The SUV was an instant hit after launch and sold close to more than 100,000 units before 1997 itself.
Tata already had a reputation for making customer and budget-friendly cars in India. The Tata Sumo was a perfect example of a well-thought-out process. The SUV was specifically made to endure off-roads and un-even roads in rural India. There was also a four-wheel-drive option which was exclusively sold to the fleet market and military. The only rival of the Tata then was Mahindra and Mahindra. Strong angular lines and boxy design was the major selling point of the car. The SUV looked quite tough.
The first generation Tata Sumo came with a 2.0L four-cylinder Diesel engine with a 5-speed manual transmission. The 1948cc engine was more than enough for India. But Tata still launched the 2001 Sumo Deluxe Turbo with a 2.0L TDi turbocharged engine. Multiple updates were given to the car to keep up with the times. Like Scorpio, Tata retained what as good and improved upon the bad bits based on customer feedback.
Tata Sumo Spacio (2000-2011)
A new 2956cc engine was the main change in the Tata Sumo Spacio. Till then, the SUMO name itself had become quite popular. This version also came with round headlamps in place of the older rectangular ones. It was priced cheaper to the previous models and served as an entry-level variant. In early 2007, Tata launched the Tata Sumo Spacio Gold Plus with a turbocharged engine which produced 70hp and 223Nm of torque.
Tata Sumo Victa (2004-2011)
The Tata Sumo Victa was the first SUMO with modern bits and pieces attached to it. It featured all-new interiors, tachometer, multi-function instrument panel, power steering, power windows, keyless entry and many more premium features for its price. Until now, the Tata Sumo was majorly used in the taxi market. Tata came with this model to attract private buyers based on the iconic design and modern interiors. The model came with 7/9-seater variants. More about Evolution of Tata Sumo in India below.
Tata Sumo Gold (2012-2019)
This was the last generation of Tata Sumo before it was discontinued with iconic design. A new engine capable of producing 85HP and 250Nm of torque was made available. Minor tweaks were also made to both exteriors and interiors of the car to give it a fresh touch. The company also introduced special graphics on the exteriors of the SUV to bring in new young buyers.
The last facelift come in October 2013: Tata Motors update the interior with a new radio CD and MP3, dual-zone A/C and new colour and sticker for the body. Production of the Sumo Gold stopped in April 2019. A new facelift is rumoured to be in works. Let us see when Tata surprises us.
There was also the Tata Sumo Grande which was not as popular as the models discussed above. The body was full of curves and the car lost its originality in this variant. Price to performance ratio was also very low for the model. It was just named Sumo for the name-following. It was never a proper successor of the original Tata Sumo.