What’s in a title? From Zen to Baleno to Safari here’s why car nomenclature matters

Tata Motors has decided to identify its future 7-seat SUV as the Tata Safari, a car previously codenamed Gravitas.

Cars and trucks have personalities hooked up to them. The names that they carry signify a specific sort of character. For occasion, when you listen to the title Toyota Land Cruiser, you believe of a significant, butch SUV. Or when you consider of a Mini Cooper, you conjure up visuals of a cute hatchback (which has by the way grown significantly in dimensions above the many years). And a Volkswagen Beetle is these kinds of a classic structure, that the title would do injustice on any other form of motor vehicle.

Also Browse Is Tata Safari’s rebirth its finish?

The badges that cars carry develop selected imagery about them, that it is tough to visualize that badge on one more form of automobile. Or most likely not.

Above the several years, carmakers have experimented with sticking well known identify badges on items that aren’t rather like the first motor vehicle that sported the title in the hopes of cashing in on the brand remember.

Reincarnated Maruti Suzuki Zen Estilo
Impression: Autos.maxabout

Consider the circumstance of the Maruti Zen, for occasion. When the authentic Maruti Zen, with its modern “jellybean” style and design was introduced in 1993, it had a specified sporty character that appealed to younger, upwardly cellular prospective buyers. The car or truck did fairly well in gross sales but was discontinued in 2006. In its place, Maruti released a hatchback with a tallboy layout (primarily based on the MR Wagon from Japan) and called it the Zen Estilo (Spanish for fashion). The successor to the primary Zen did not do effectively in product sales and the enterprise at last pulled the plug on it in 2013.

The motive it did not do properly was due to the fact Maruti tried using to attraction to the identical viewers – the sporty, younger Zen purchaser with the Estilo, throwing in things of a little bit more energy, a lot more space and providing it a loved ones enchantment. The prospective buyers weren’t fascinated, due to the fact in their minds the Zen Estilo just did not have the exact same ring to it like the initial Zen. It was also extremely equivalent to its sibling, the popular Maruti Wagon-R.

However, it’s not often true that the identical identify on a various automobile won’t perform. All over again, an additional instance from Maruti. It released a mid-size sedan in the yr 1999 identified as the Maruti Baleno. This sedan was quite underrated, by no means truly topping the income charts right up until it was discontinued in 2007. Cut to 8 years later on, in 2015, when a premium hatchback was launched with the very same identify. The new Maruti Baleno has absent on to best its segment in sales quantities.

Why did the Baleno control to be successful though the Zen (Estilo) didn’t? It’s probably since there was an eight-year hole before reintroduction of the manufacturer and also due to the fact the hatchback edition available far much better value for revenue in phrases of functions, styling and place. And it’s also because the initial Baleno did not genuinely have a strong “personality” affiliated with its title.


Now choose the situation of the Land Rover Defender. Jaguar Land Rover has taken a huge gamble with the launch of the all-new Land Rover Defender this 12 months (initially codenamed DC 100). It has a fairly sturdy history to dwell up to simply because the first Defender evoked imagery of trans-continental trips about all forms of hostile terrain. So, when the new Defender (with a monocoque entire body) had to switch the outdated one, Land Rover had to hold the style and design cues quite related and give it the exact same go-any place functionality, with all the modern-day conveniences. Fortunately, preliminary reports have demonstrated consumers are discovering it a worthy successor to the Defender badge.

It is rough to mess with some legendary styles when you have to are living up to a identify as is the case with the Jeep Wrangler, the Mercedes G63 or Mini Cooper.

Now, arrive to the future Tata Safari nee Gravitas. It is created on the very same system as the Tata Harrier and is, in simple fact, a 7-seat stretched model of the same, with the rear portion getting suitably altered. The style and design from the entrance appears to be like virtually equivalent to the Harrier. Tata experienced showcased this as the Gravitas at the Auto Expo in 2020 and which was scheduled to be introduced later on this month. To all of a sudden tell the public that the Gravitas is now the Tata Safari, although a completely various vehicle is a large gamble.

The Tata Safari Storme had the exact silhouette as the 1st-gen SUV with the similar identify. 
The new Tata Safari nee Gravitas

The Tata Safari had a specified character and a faithful fan following. When the Tata Safari Storme was launched, the standard character stayed, due to the fact the overall body shell was equivalent – the identical entire body on frame building, that experienced a commanding temperament. It evoked feelings of electrical power, of domination, and “live large” mind-set. The advertisements for the Tata Safari with the tagline “reclaim your life” have been iconic. Can the Tata Gravitas, with the Tata Safari name, match that sort of individuality? It’s a major question.

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