The year 2014 has seen many changes in the product and powertrain development potential of Tata Motors. The company shunned by critics and the enthusiasts over the years for lack of good petrol engines showed us the small capacity Revotron petrol motor. The good news is that the company will make more petrol engines.
The first of the turbocharged petrol engine from Tata is a relatively low-tech engine in comparison to Ford’s EcoBoost and VW’s TSI engine. The EcoBoost engine has the highest specific output at 123bhp per litre followed by the VW at 86bhp per litre; in comparison the Revotron engine makes a measly 59bhp per litre. However, this has a lot to do with the construction of the engine too as the 1.2-litre Revotron uses two valve per cylinder, a cast iron block and no direct injection like the other two. Leverton believes it is a step in the right direction to begin with even if it is low tech.
“The Revotron engine is a first step in that direction. This is not a one-off engine, but the start of a range of new engines of around the same displacement,” said Tim Leverton. The much-hyped Tata Revotron turbo-petrol is just the start of things to come and the first in a range of petrol engines from Tata Motors according to Tim Leverton, president, advanced and product engineering.
“This engine is a straightforward and reliable approach, keeping in mind cost of ownership. When you have a turbocharger, you don’t necessarily need more valves. We’ve done a lot of work to reduce friction and designed an all-new head to optimise forced induction. The block too is completely re-designed for lower weight and more rigidity. So I think there is integrity in the configuration.”
The big news is that Tata is developing a new family of three and four-cylinder petrol engines with aluminium block unlike the Revotron that is based on the Xeta petrol range. Leverton also hinted that a hot 100bhp plus petrol motor might be the next step.
Tata Motors has been for ages considered as a diesel car company. The introduction of the Revotron series of engine shows how serious they are about shrugging off that image. The new petrol engines might just earn more accolades for Tata among the enthusiasts.