Auto industry veteran and Maruti Suzuki India Chairman RC Bhargava on Thursday said Ratan Tata needs to be given credit for attempting to offer an affordable car to the masses through Nano, which ousted Tata Sons Chairman Cyrus Mistry wanted to shut down due to mounting losses. “The intention was a good intention and Tatas tried to fulfil that intention. Anyway we could not have done it. I think he needs credit for having attempted it,” Bhargava told reporters here. He was asked on whether trying to sell a Rs 1 lakh was a feasible idea.
Bhargava said the idea behind Nano, as conceived by Tata, was to offer an affordable and safer mode of personal transportation to two-wheeler riders and their families, which needs to be lauded. He said right from the beginning MSI had maintained that it couldn’t have come up with such a product at that price despite being a major small car manufacturer.
Mistry, in his letter to Tata Sons board members had said that for Tata Motors to make a turnaround, Nano needed to be shut down as it had reached a peak loss of Rs 1,000 crore. He has alleged that it was only because of emotional reasons that it wasn’t shut down and doing so would also affect supplies of Nano gliders to an electric car maker in which Tata has a stake.
Asked for his views on the ongoing tussle between Tatas and Mistry, Bhargava refused to comment saying it’s an internal matter of the Tatas. “It is a totally internal matter of the group. I don’t think it is appropriate for any outsider to try to comment and dabble in somebody’s internal matter,” he said. Bhargava further said: “They should be left to sort out their internal issue without all of us trying to muddy the waters.”