The 2021 Tata Safari is one of the most exciting launches coming up. Tata Motors certainly did create a buzz when they announced their plans of resurrecting the 'Safari' nameplate in India. A few days ago, Tata Motors revealed the production-spec Safari through a set of images and also announced that the first production model has been rolled off the production-line at Tata's plant in Pune. As we are nearing the launch, Tata is revealing more details about the Safari and the latest teaser reveals that the Safari will come with captain seats for the middle row.
Now, Tata Motors have always stressed about the Safari being a genuine seven-seater. This means that the Safari will be offered with two seating options - a 6-seater layout with captain seats for the middle row and teased in the image below and additionally, it will also be offered as a proper 7-seater SUV with bench seats for the middle row. It must be noted that the model showcased at the 2020 Auto Expo also came with a 6-seater layout with captain seats in the middle row. However, the Safari always had to be a proper 7-seater SUV as a nod back to the original.
The Safari is going to be Tata Motor's new flagship model and it this 7-seater SUV was always conceived as the Safari. Tata Motors say that the only reason why they did not name the Harrier to be the Safari is because it was a 5-seater SUV. Tata have also stressed on the fact that the upcoming SUV will not have an apologetic third row of seats. As far as variants go, Tata is expected to launch the Safari in three or four variant initially and then add/remove according to customer demand down the line. There could even be Black Edition and Camo Edition of Safari, just as we have for the Harrier.
Tata have also added 63mm to the Harrier’s length and 80mm to the height to make way for a decent third row. Just like the Harrier, the Safari too will be based on the Land Rover-derived Omega architecture. Tata Motors have said 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. Although Tata have not released any official images of the interiors yet, the basic dashboard layout and features list will remain more or less identical to the Harrier.
The 2021 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. 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.