Tata Motors have already created a lot of buzz with the 2021 Tata Safari, an iconic nameplate that has been resurrected for the 7-seater sibling of the Tata Harrier. Tata Motors say that the 7-seater sibling of the Harrier was always conceived as a true successor to the Safari and there are several elements in the design that nod back to the original. The previous generation Tata Safari had also served as a proven workhorse for the Indian Army. If there's any iconic Indian Army vehicle after the Maruti Suzuki Gypsy, it has to be the Tata Safari.
While there's no word if the Indian Army could be using the 2021 Safari as its official vehicle, here we have a rendering of the new Safari of how it could look like if it was actually used as one. The Indian Army used last-gen model’s GS800 rendition as its official vehicle which came with a few modifications to make it an apt vehicle for the Army. Based on that, this new-age Safari sure looks more than up for the job. In the above image, the army-spec 2021 Safari comes painted in a Foilage Green paint shade, the same that was offered with the older army-spec Safari Storme GS800.
Another major upgrade for the SUV has been the addition of protection for all the glass areas - the front and rear windshields as well as the side glass panes. For improved illumination in the dark, it also comes fitted with an LED bar light on the roof. For supporting the radio equipment army vehicles come fitted with, there's a bunch of antennas fitted on the rear fender along with one on the front fender. Since army vehicles generally have a flag post, there's even a provision for that on the hood. Lastly, the army-spec Safari here comes fitted with steel wheels as as they can bear a lot more abuse.
But here's the thing. While the original Safari was a proper 4x4, the new Safari will be front-wheel driven, at least initially. And that's the only thing holding it back from being a capable army vehicle. Our army vehicles sure need a 4x4 system considering the treacherous terrains they usually tred on. Tata Motors have however assured that the Land Rover Discovery-derived D8 platform can be adapted to incorporate a four-wheel-drive system. Tata have said that based on customer feedback and research, they could actually explore the possibility of a 4x4 Safari sometime in the future.
When launched, the new Tata Safari will be powered by the Harrier's Fiat-sourced 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder diesel engine that produces 168 bhp and 350 Nm of peak torque. The engine will come mated to a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed torque converter automatic gearbox. The new Safari will arrive in showrooms in January itself, and bookings for it will also commence later this month. It will come at a decent premium over the Harrier which is priced between INR 13.84-20.30 lakh and will rival the likes of the MG Hector Plus and upcoming next-gen Mahindra XUV500.
[Image Source - IndianAuto]