Tata Xenon Is Rugged, Diesel Equipped

Tata recently came out with its latest light truck offering for the South African Market, the Xenon. Compact pickups in South Africa are called bakkies, a term we think is the bees knees, and this one is Tata's second bakkie for that market. The Xenon rides on a double wishbone front suspension with a solid axle and leaf spring setup in the back. Shift-on-the-fly all wheel wheel drive can be accomplished up to 65 kph by way of a knob on the dash - four wheel low has to be engaged at a stand still. The truck has only one power option, a 3 liter four cylinder turbo diesel with direct injection good for 114 hp and 220 lb.ft. of torque routed through a 5 speed manual. All that is well and good, but the tubular bumpers and roll over bars are the real winners here. When and why did that go out of style?