Facts About the Long-Gone TATA Sierra

In 1991, the three-door SUV with a 2.0-litre diesel engine did not go with the lifestyle of Indian buyers and, therefore, the SUV, which was way ahead of its time, drowned in merely nine years

In 2021, India has several SUVs to offer from numerous manufacturers. From affordable SUVs to fancy ones, the Indian automobile market has it all. However, exactly 30 years ago, Indians did not know the definition of SUVs or sports utility vehicles. After all, those were the times when the automobile industry was in an incipient stage and India had mediocre hatchbacks and a few sedans. 

In 1991, one Indian brand tried to bring something unique to the table. Honestly, let’s scratch that line because the brand did not merely try; theyactually served an unusual dish to the Indians. Tata Motors gifted India its first-sever proper SUV by the name Sierra. At that juncture, Tata Motors was only recognized for manufacturing commercial vehicles and passenger vehicles were not a territory they were into. However, the company took a colossal gamble and launched the three-door SUV with a 2.0-litre engine. 

Sadly, the car did not survive because India did not know what to do with an SUV. A splendid car which many have forgotten, here are some facts about the long-gone Sierra. 

Most expensive car- It was not just an elegant new-age SUV in India; it was also the most expensive car in the market. The massive SUV in the 90s was launched with a hefty price tag of INR 5 lakh. A significant reason the car could not survive long. Even today, several families cannot afford cars worth INR 3 lakh in the country. 

Adjustable steering wheel- We mentioned it was fancy, right? Tata stacked the car with several features that were never found in any other Indian car. The adjustable steering wheel was a highlight along with power windows, tachometer, 4×4 option. Not to forget, it also had an engine with an optional turbo/non-turbo. 

All glass roof- Check the Indian auto market in 2021 and you will have a hard time finding a car with an all-glass roof. Back in the day, the Sierra flaunted an all-glass roof; a feature that was never seen before in any Indian car.

Sierra EV- The 1991 Sierra passed away in 2000. However, the present generation of drivers and auto-enthusiasts are in love with the age-old Sierra. Keeping the buzz in mind, Tata revealed an EV concept version of the Sierra at the Auto Expo 2020. Will it become a reality? We strongly hope it does!

Rohit Chatterjee

An alumnus of the Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media, Rohit Chatterjee is a bona fide moto-enthusiast who has worked with several media houses in his brief career. Chatterjee mostly writes features and news articles related to automobiles and motorsports. When not working, he is found on the interstate clocking over 100kmph on his NS200!
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