What is it?
The Tata Safari is back or rather it made a surprise comeback in January of this year. Hinging on the success of the Harrier, it was only a matter of time before Tata introduced a three-row version of the SUV. As evinced by the ‘concept’ car shown at the 2020 Auto Expo, It was expected to be called the Gravitas even in full production guise.
But with such a strong SUV heritage and the revival of the Sierra brand name (albeit for an EV concept), the three-row SUVs moniker had to go down a different pathway.
Thus the Tata Safari was reborn.
Now just to up the ante, Tata, when launching the SUV added an Adventure Persona for the car. Its aim to give the Safari a little more character because after all in this day and age isn’t taking the off-beaten path and getting away a way to reclaim your life?
How is it different from the regular Safari on the outside?
Let’s start with what’s not changed. You still get the same giant silhouette that defines the Safari. This also includes the signature grille, 18-inch wheels and even the same feature list that’s available with the top-of-the-line XZ/XZA Plus variant.
It’s called the Adventure Persona right, the keyword being Persona. Well to match that, Tata has painted it in a new shade called Tropical Mist. What’s more all the chrome has been blacked out and even the wheels get a black gloss coating. If there’s one thing that both the Harrier and Safari have no dearth of, is presence. They are both large vehicles and with a special paint scheme, the Safari looks even more imposing. Oddly enough, there’s no badging of any kind anywhere mentioning that it’s the Adventure Persona of the Safari. I guess Tata felt that if they offered a unique colour scheme that would suffice to give the car its identity.
How is it different from the regular Safari on the inside?
You get the same cabin as the top-spec Safari on offer but here the interiors have been given a cream colour as opposed to the regular Safari’s full white layout. Everything looks and feels the same as the regular Safari with the same levels of fit, finish and ergonomics.
Space is absolutely no issue at all for the first two rows with a good amount of headroom and legroom. The second-row captain seat on the right side even with the driver’s seat pushed back still gives you some wiggle room for the knees as well as the feet.
The third row, for a person of my size, is acceptable at best and for adults should be an option if you have a large group and don’t want to take a second vehicle. The third row of seats fold flat and with them down you get 450-litre boot space which is quite a lot considering the high roofline of the Safari.
What’s on the feature and safety list?
The Adventure Persona is based on the top-spec XZ/XZA Plus variant and thus gets all the bells and whistles offered with the Safari. This list includes Climate control with AC vents for both rows, panoramic sunroof, six airbags ABS with EBD, hill descent control, Xenon-HID projector headlamps, power driver’s seat, auto-dimming IRVM and JBL sound system.
You get a semi-digital instrument cluster as well as an 8.8-inch touchscreen infotainment system with a floating display. It runs Tata’s latest interactive OS with connectivity for both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. You get connected car technology as well as dedicated mobile apps for things like maps and using your phone as a media remote.
What’s under the hood?
The only engine on offer is a 168bhp/350Nm 2.0-litre turbo diesel powering the front wheels. You can have it with either a six-speed manual or a six-speed torque-converter automatic. Our car in the photos gets the latter. As a part of the deal, you also get three driving modes as well as a terrain response system to provide optimum traction in low grip conditions.
What about the driving experience?
We have driven the Tata Safari both in the MT and AT guises and you can find a link to our review here or even watch our video which has been embedded above.
What about pricing and competition?
The MT version of the Tata Safari Adventure Persona has priced at Rs 24.13 lakh while the AT version is priced at Rs 25.60 lakh. In both cases, they are priced at Rs 24,000 over their standard siblings, which is a really good deal if you want your Safari to stand out but not shell out too much over the price of the regular car. All prices mentioned above are on-road Delhi. This car rivals the likes of the MG Hector Plus and the Mahindra XUV500.
Photography: Kaustubh Gandhi