Armed with new interiors and slightly modified exteriors, new 2015 Tata safari has driven at a price of Rs 10.41 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). On the outside, there is new range rover inspired grill. Varicor badging has been added to the sides although rear part of the SUV has been carried over unchanged. Inside the cabin, Tata motors has used new layout for the center console. Steering too, has been replaced with new wheel we have already witnessed in Zest. Overall ambience and quality now feels much better than before, and space here, as always is best among the rivals. Mechanically, Tata Motors has re-tuned the engine of new safari. 2.2-litre, 4-cylinder, diesel engine makes 150 PS of max power which is 10 PS more than the outgoing version. That said, 320 newton meter of torque and 5-speed manual transmission have been retained. Available in 3 variants i.e. Lx, Ex, and Vx, new safari Storme comes in both 4X2 and 4X4 configuration.
Storme`s elder brother Safari was launched in 1998 and could even be passed off as New India`s first home-grown SUV. The car has over time has seen some external and two major engine changes. However, when Tata Motors decided to launch the new Storme, we did expect some radical changes and almost a new car, but Tata Motors had different thoughts. Whilst they did make those superficial changes, however, they retained most of the exterior parts therefore the feeling of new, just did not come across. Maybe they were constrained by the amount of financial resources they wanted to invest in the Storme. What they could not do with the looks they did it it`s pricing and offered the big New Strome for its lovers as a sub 10 lacs surprise price. This did create a lot of flutter in the market. To be fair to Strome, changes in it are far too many when compared to its elder siblings, however most are under the skin and inside the car, therefore not so visible. For example the ladder on frame chassis has become shorter, more modern and is based on ARIA chassis, this has added to Strome`s torsional rigidity and reduced weight. Hydroformed Strome chassis is almost 35 Kgs lighter than the old Safari. Strome has a 10.8 m turning diameter Vs 12 of old safari, thanks to ARIA`s steering unit given to it as well as 80 mm wider track has helped managed such tight turning characteristics of the Strome. Head-on the big and bulbous square Safari lamps have given way to a more slimmer projector lamps nestling between them a near vertical honeycomb grille reminding one of Land-Rover association of Tata Motors. Interiors are where the change is more visible, beige colour, two tone dash and better quality plastics. The new centre console with AC vents on top and music system below it are some other nice touches internally. Gaps between panels are quite well managed and give the interiors of Strome a plush feel worthy of its asking price.