Tata Indica Vista Facelift spotted testing in Pune

From the Nano to the Aria, Tata Motors is struggling to sustain sales and market share in the Indian market. If there is one model that is consistently selling in moderate numbers for the Pune-based Indian manufacturer, it is the Indica series. But the problem is it is not the modern Vista that's selling more, rather the previous generation version that has basically remained the same since its debut in 1998. Naturally, private buyers are shunning the model as most of the sales come from satisfied cabbies who can't afford cars like the Toyota Etios and Mahindra Verito.

On retrospection, the widespread complaint against the Vista is that it looked and felt too much like the Indica that has become the quintessential cab. That's not an image that private car buyers would be fond of. Be it the smiling radiator grille that's not making us smile anymore, the rounded profile that has gone out of fashion half a decade back or the vertical 'christmas-tree' taillight cluster that's frankly boring to look at these days, the Vista shares too much with the Indica. The car that you see in this post, spotted testing in the outskirts of Pune, is what Tata thinks would get the Vista out of its current troubles.

Through these low-resolution spy-shots, it is clear that the Vista's rear is going for a substantial makeover. The registration plates are moving up from the bumper to fill up the available space in the tailgate. In what would be a big relief for many Tata fans, the christmas-tree taillight clusters are making their way out of Indica for the first time ever. It's being widely speculated that the Vista facelift would feature sharper design touches from the Manza Hybrid Concept displayed at the 2012 Auto Expo in New Delhi. The body shell and mechanicals are expected to be retained from the existing Vista. That would mean the current strengths of the Vista like the spacious cabin, the composed ride quality and the frugal diesel engine would remain intact.

But, will just a sharper looking Vista over the same body shell do enough to revive Tata's fortunes in the small car segment? Let's wait and watch!

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