To oblivion and back: how Tata Motors’ car business turned around. Hint: commonality in vehicles.

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A general view of the Tata Motors stall at the Auto Expo 2020 at Greater Noida on the outskirts of New Delhi on February 5, 2020.

Synopsis

Tata Motors aims to become more agile with Alpha and Omega platforms. The idea is to keep the rolling chassis common to different cars. Modularity reduces development time and cost, as the company needs to manage fewer parts. Also, for every new model launched on the same platform, R&D costs amortised per vehicle drop exponentially.

Financial year 2015-16 should make for some telling pages in Tata Motors’ history. Many in the company would like to forget it as a bad dream. Many would like to remember it as a year when the automaker, pushed to the wall, slowly began a crowing fightback.First, why would someone want to bury FY16 in history. This was the fiscal when Tata Motors passenger-vehicle business had cratered to around a third of its sales volume. It was long since it

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