Trying to establish a new brand in the midst of the auto connectivity revolution is tricky, as evidenced by Tata's new sub-brand and its sports car, the Racemo.
Tata, the parent company of Jaguar Land Rover, recently established Tamo. It's a new sub-brand that will focus on low-volume models that serve as test-beds for new technologies. Its first car is the Racemo, meant for the Indian market.
The Racemo will be limited to just 250 examples when it goes on sale in 2018. It's a midengine sports car, with a 1.2-liter I3 good for 187 horsepower and 155 pound-feet of torque. Its automated manual transmission will help it achieve a 0-60 sprint in about 6 seconds, which is solidly sporty.
Marketed as India's first connected car, the Racemo according to Tata will involve a number of technologies, including cloud computing, analytics and mapping, but the company offered little, if any detail, about how that might play out. A quick gander at a Racemo video on YouTube (embedded below) only serves to add to the confusion. It's like a marketing team was given a bunch of video editing software, a handful of mushrooms and no rules whatsoever.
However, one thing will be for certain -- the Racemo+, a hopped-up, race-only variant of the Racemo, will make an appearance in Forza Horizon 3 for the Xbox One. It'll be the first Indian brand to appear in the game. It sounds like there will be actual track activities where folks can drive the Racemo+ in real life, as well.
The car itself looks promising, and it's good to see Tata using India as its proving grounds for new technology that could expand to other markets in the future. I just wish there was a bit more specificity in how it plans to use the new technology it touts.