Tata Motors unveiled the all-new Safari SUV in India yesterday as their latest flagship model. Bookings for the Safari will commence on February 4, 2021 before the SUV officially goes on sale later in February itself. The new Safari is essentially a three-row version of theTata Harrier, but more importantly, it is the revival of an iconic nameplate from Tata Motor's history. The 2021 Tata Safari will be available in six trims in India - XE, XM, XT, XT+, XZ, XZ+. While Tata Motors unveiled the Safari yesterday in its top-spec form, here we have a video which shows what the flagship SUV will be like in its base-spec trim.
While this spotted test mule is a pre-production model, it still offers us a glance at the features and equipment that will be available with the base-spec XE trim. The base Safari XE trim gets the split headlamp setup with LED DRLs on top and projector headlamps down below. The chrome grille with tri-arrow design elements however have been given a miss. Instead, it gets the regular blacked-out grille from the Harrier. The Safari also rides on smaller 17-inch steel wheels on the base-spec trim instead of the 18-inch dual-tone alloy wheels available on higher trims. It also misses out on the silver garnish on the front and rear bumpers.
On the inside, the base 2021 Tata Safari XE trim appears quite bare bones. The most obvious is the lack of a proper touchscreen infotainment system. Instead, the base XE trim only comes with what appears to be a basic 2-DIN audio system. Further, there are no steering wheel mounted controls, the air-conditioning system is a manual unit and it gets manual internal adjustments for the rear view mirror. The base XE trim also misses out on the 7.0-inch digital display in the instrument cluster. Instead, it only comes with analog dials.
Tata is also offering very premium quality materials on the top-spec trims of the Safari in the form of Oyster while leatherette upholstry and a ash wood trim on the dashboard. The base-spec Safari however misses out all that goodness and comes with hard-touch plastics on the dashboard. Further, the Safari XE trim only comes with black fabric seats and the door pads too are finished in an all-black trim. It also misses out on the electronic parking brake. Instead, it comes with the Harrier-style manual parking brake.
Just like the Harrier, the Safari too is based on the Land Rover-derived Omega architecture. Under the hood, the Tata Safari is 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 comes mated to a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed torque converter automatic gearbox. When launched, the Tata Safari will command a decent premium over the Harrier. It will rival the likes of the current-gen Mahindra XUV500 and MG Hector Plus as other three-row mid-size SUVs in this class. It will also be joined by the likes of the 7-seater version of the Hyundai Creta and the upcoming next-gen Mahindra XUV500 at a later stage.