Lionel Messi
Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring a goalReuters

Argentinean footballer and Spanish club Barcelona forward Lionel Messi is all set to become the brand ambassador of the upcoming car, Tata Kite. The 28-year-old three-time FIFA Ballon d'Or winner (2010,2011,2012) is also likely to become the global ambassador for Tata Motors.

A MotorOctane report explains that Tata Motors has already completed a photo shoot with Lionel Messi in Spain. The report further suggests Sway and Zica as the possible names for the Kite hatchback and Kite compact sedan respectively, in the production form. Both the names have been registered by Tata Motors.

Tata Motors' decision to bring in Messi, one of the most sought after sportspersons, for brand endorsement indicates how important Kite is for the company. To rope him in, it could have cost a bomb to Tata Motors.

Tata Kite, a hatchback built on a new platform, is expected to hit the assembly line sometime in December. Although the previous reports had hinted at an October launch, it looks unlikely now.

Under the hood, Tata Kite is likely to get the company's new 1.05-litre three-cylinder common-rail diesel motor that can churn out a power of 64.1bhp and 140Nm of torque and an all-new 1.2-litre petrol engine. The tubro-petrol Revotron engine debuted with Zest/Bolt is also expected in lesser displacement engine. Kite is speculated to get e-clutch system similar to AMT that allows drivers to use manual transmission for the first gear without using the clutch.

When launched, Tata Kite will be pitted against Maruti Celerio and Hyundai Grand i10 in India and is expected to be priced at around Rs 4 lakh. To be manufactured at the Sanand plant in Gujarat, Tata Kite will be the first non-Nano hatchback from the plant.

Also read
Quick Links