Currently reading: Geneva motor show: Tata Aria
Indian firm's flagship SUV launched at the Geneva motor show

Tata has given its new flagship model, the Aria, its European debut at the Geneva motor show. Conceived as a global model, it’s been developed to appeal to European and British buyers and is expected to go on sale here in spring 2011.

Crucially, the Aria has been designed to meet European crash legislation — the company is aiming for a four-star EuroNCAP rating — and is said to be the most sophisticated Tata to date.

See the official Tata Aria pics

However, the car uses a body-on-frame construction rather than a more modern monocoque shell, in order to give the vehicle the robustness necessary for dealing with rural Indian roads. At 4780mm long, the Aria is a similar size to a Kia Sorento.

One engine is available: a 140bhp, 2.2-litre, four-cylinder diesel coupled to a full-time four-wheel drive system. No official performance figures have been released, although it’s likely that for Europe, more power will be expected to improve the car’s performance.

Tata is considering a 170bhp version, although this would require a new gearbox because the Aria’s five-speed manual cannot deal with that much power. There are no plans for a petrol engine.

Inside, the Aria has a third row of seats and an LCD screen infotainment system, the first time such technology has appeared in any Tata.

Tata has launched an SUV in the UK before; the Safari was available here during the Noughties, but it was never a great success. In Europe Tata currently sells cars in Italy, Poland, Spain and Turkey.

Hormazd Sorabjee/Dan Stevens

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l00ky 24 February 2010

Re: Tata Aria to reach UK in 2011

I know there is a world wide crisis but i don`t know why "TATA" would think they`d have success in Britain.I don`t know who would chose this car over a well known and reliable car like VW,Audi,Skoda,kia, nissan etc.

BTW how much does this cost??

Rover P6 3500S 24 February 2010

Re: Tata Aria to reach UK in 2011

Another thing - why didn't they just save a load of development costs and use the Discovery chassis? Sure, the Disco has this odd monocoque/body-on-frame hybrid construction, but surely they could build a simple body for the chassis? Otherwise, could they use the old Disco's chassis, or that of the P38 Rangey, or that of the Defender?

Uncle Mellow 24 February 2010

Re: Tata Aria to reach UK in 2011

I'm sure it's pretty good , but it doesn't look "butch" enough to appeal to the school-run set. It needs a more intimidating front-end to fit in with the usual suspects.