The Tata brand is somewhat known in PH for its fleet of diesel-powered commercial vehicles and pick-up trucks. They did try with the a sedan and a hatchback, but those didn't make an impact in the market.
Over in India, Tata has a wide array of models like Tiago, Altroz, Tigor, Safari, Harrier, and the Nexon. But what Tata needs is a small, subcompact crossover that could take on the likes of the Nissan Magnite.
This is the 2022 Tata Punch, and it's aimed directly against other subcompacts in the segment. Combining hatchback driving dynamics with crossover practicality, the Tata Punch blends stylish looks, high-tech amenities, and a fuel-efficient powertrain.
Drawing influences from its bigger siblings like the Harrier and Safari, the Punch features a two-tier headlight design, with the upper portion getting the LED daytime running lights. Meanwhile, the lower section features the large projector headlights.
At the rear, there are eye-catching LED taillights and a unique tailgate design, helping the crossover stand out from the rest of Tata's lineup. Flared wheel arches, diamond-cut alloy wheels, and black body cladding provide the Punch with a more rugged appearance. Two-tone paint is also available.
In terms of size, the Punch measures 3,827mm long, 1742mm wide, 1615mm tall, and has a 2445mm wheelbase. This makes Tata's new subcompact crossover slightly smaller than the Magnite which measures 3994mm long, 1758mm wide, and has a bigger 2500mm wheelbase. The Nissan is shorter in height, however, as it only stands 1572mm tall. When it comes to ground clearance, the Magnite has 205mm while the Punch only comes with 190mm.
The interior of the Tata Punch features a minimalist design with a two-tone finish. There are rectangular aircon vents, a flat-bottom steering wheel, and a dual-gauge cluster with a multi-info display. Meanwhile, infotainment comes in the form of a 7-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Other features include rain-sensing wipers, an engine start/stop button, optional automatic climate control, and a fast-charging USB port.
Under the hood, the Punch uses a 1.2-liter naturally-aspirated three-cylinder engine. It makes a humble 86 PS with 113 Nm of torque and is paired with either a five-speed manual or automated manual transmission (AMT).
When it comes to safety, Tata's smallest crossover features anti-lock brakes with electronic brakeforce distribution, reverse camera, cruise control, and idle stop/start.
The Tata Punch is set to go on sale in India soon and could be one of the country's most affordable crossovers. But would the Tata Punch make sense here in the country? If they did, will it give similarly-sized crossovers a run for their money?