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The Bollywood Magna

Not significant: The Tata Magna is not a priority for local importer Anoger Automobiles.

It's a Magna like you have never seen before

8 Sep 2000

MEET the new Magna.

No, this isn't a sneak shot of the next generation Mitsubishi coming out of Adelaide, but Indian manufacturer Tata's large family car launched at the recent Auto Expo 2000 in New Delhi.

It goes on sale early next year on the Indian domestic market. With rear-wheel drive and an overall length in excess of five metres, it sounds like a design Australians would feel familiar with.

Power, though, comes from a choice of petrol or turbo-diesel 2.0-litre engines, rather than the bigger capacity six-cylinder engines preferred here.

And that is one of the important factors mitigating against the car going on sale here.

Local importer Anoger Automobiles - which has recently launched the Safari four-wheel drive here - admits the small capacity engine and potential quality issues could work against the Tata Magna here rather than the name, which could be easily changed.

"It would have to be competitive against the likes of the Hyundai Grandeur to be successful," said Anoger regional sales manager Mr Patrick Flinn.

"It's not a real priority at the moment."Mr Flinn said Anoger was focussing more on the Indica small car which it hopes to have on sale here in the first half of 2001, once it meets Australian emissions standards.

The Indica is about the same size as the Daihatsu Sirion and Daewoo Matiz but has the advantage of a larger 1.4-litre petrol engine.

Pricing is yet to be finalised but Anoger is aiming to launch it for under $12,000 driveaway.

Meanwhile, the Safari is expected to offer the option of dual airbags ex-factory from March next year. A locally-developed third row seat option could be on the market well before the end of 2000.

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