File photo of Natarajan Chandrasekaran during a news conference in Mumbai, India (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

N Chandrasekaran Appointed Tata Motors Chairman

Tata Motors on Tuesday appointed Tata Sons chairman-designate N Chandrasekaran as its chairman with immediate effect.

In a regulatory filing, the company said "the board of directors have today appointed Natarajan Chandrasekaran as additional director and chairman of the board with immediate effect".

The appointment comes within a week of Tata Sons naming Chandrasekaran as its executive chairman, capping two months of a bitter boardroom battle that followed the sacking of Cyrus Mistry on October 24, 2016.

Popularly known as 'Chandra', the 54-year-old will take charge at the helm of Tata Sons, the holding company of the $103-billion salt-to-software conglomerate, from February 21. He will be the first non-Parsi chairman of the 150-year-old Tata Group.

Chandrasekaran will have the responsibility of turning around the struggling homegrown auto major which is trying to regain lost ground, specially in the passenger vehicles segment.

He will also have to pay special attention to the Nano. Mistry had alleged that Tata Motors has been unable to discontinue the loss-making small car due to "emotional reasons" and doing so would also stop the supply of "gliders" to an entity that makes electric cars in which Ratan Tata has a stake.

Mistry had alleged that the Nano product development called for a car below Rs 1 lakh but the cost was always above this.

"This product has consistently lost money, peaking at Rs 1,000 crore," Mistry had said in his letter written to Tata Sons board members a day after he was ousted as chairman of India’s largest conglomerate.

Currently, Tata Motors is focusing on reviving its fortunes in the passenger vehicles segment with its compact hatchback Tiago receiving a good response.

The company will launch its premium SUV Hexa on Wednesday.