Tata launches Safari Storme in India

After 14 long years since its launch in 1998, the Tata Safari has received its first major facelift today as Tata Motors launched the new Safari Storme in India. The Tata Safari Storme will co-exist with the existing Safari and is available in 4 variants – LX, EX, VX and VX 4x4, priced at INR 9.95, 10.77, 12.37 and 13.66 Lakhs respectively, ex-showroom Delhi.

At first glance, the Safari Storme looks like just a cosmetic facelift of an already old design, but it is actually more than that. The Storme is built on the new Aria platform, that is considerably more rigid and lighter than the existing Safari platform.

Though the basic shape and dimensions are still the same, the Storme comes with a redesigned front end that is inspired by Land Rover. The boomerang headlights with projector beams and an unique rectangular mesh grille with a thick chrome strip on top look classy. The profile remains untouched and retains the classic 'Safari' shape. The biggest change in the rear is the absence of spare wheel on the tail gate, which takes away the typical 'SUV' feel. In addition to the horizontal chrome strip that adds visual bling, a thick grey strip runs across the tailgate and houses the logo and badges. The taillights are redesigned too while the dual exhaust pipes and diffuser-style insert in the rear bumper makes the Storme look sporty.

Powering the Safari Storme is the same 2.2-liter common-rail engine that gives a maximum power output of 140 PS at 4000 rpm and a peak torque of 320 Nm between 1700-2700 rpm. The engine is now dubbed 'VariCOR', indicating the presence of variable geometry turbine technology. The 4x4 variant is fitted with a 4-wheel drive electronic shift-on-the-fly mechanism with a limited slip differential. The interiors are said to be much improved over the existing Safari, both in terms of aesthetics and quality. Fit and finish is also expected to be much better, an attribute that Tata Safari isn't famous for till now. We are sure that the spacious interiors, best-in-class middle row seats and brilliant ride quality of the existing Safari have been carried over to the Storme as well.

Quite a lot of features have been added too, like front airbags, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), parking assist with display in the rear view mirror, leather upholstery and music system with USB, Bluetooth and iPod connectivity. Though the list seems to be long, other cars in this price range like Hyundai Elantra and Mahindra XUV 500 have taken the game forward in terms of interior features. With even Tata's own Manza Club Class that was launched yesterday sporting features like automatic climate control, touch-screen music system with navigation and steering mounted audio controls, we really fail to understand Tata's strategy in omitting those features from the Safari Storme.

May be, a Safari Storme Club Class is in the making and would be launched a couple of years down the road.

Is a nip and tuck to a 14-year old exterior design, a substantial improvement in interior quality, fit and finish and a comprehensive overhaul of its underpinnings enough to bring the Safari back in the game? Will the Storme bolster the Safari range to compete with Renault Duster and Mahindra XUV 500? Tata hopes it will. As for us, we aren't sure.


  1. The Safari Storme is big improvement but not in terms of looks. Just like the current generation Swift which looks a lot like the Swift launched here in 2005 but is totally different under the skin.

    1. Well said, but Tata's biggest challenge is to pass on this truth to the public. Most of them are of the opinion that the Storme is just a mild cosmetic facelift of the Safari.