Despite all the attention diverted towards the all-new Zest compact sedan and Bolt hatchback, Tata Motors has been silently working on updating the existing products as well that will join the new twins later in the year. The company is planning to launch the facelifted version of the Safari Storme SUV by the end of the year in the country that will compliment the automakers strategy to boost volumes. Tata has been working on the Safari Storme facelift for some time now and a test mule was also caught on test in Ooty earlier this year.
The updated Safari is expected to sport major changes on the exteriors as well as the interiors. The new Harman infotainment system that debuted on the Zest will be offered on the top-end ZX version of the Safari, while an automatic version with a 6-speed ZF auto gearbox will finally be introduced. Mechanically too, the Safari Storme is expected to get the updated 2.2-litre VARICOR diesel engine from the 2014 Aria facelift producing around 150 PS of power.
The Safari’s cabin will get more premium as well as front facing third row seats as optional. Launched in 2012, the Safari Storme was caught up in the rise of inflation and compact SUVs, failing to get the desired sales numbers as Tata would have hoped for. The automaker however, still manages to retail around 750 units of the Safari every month in the country and retailed 791 units of the SUV in June this year witnessing a 2.9 percent decline in sales, compared to the same period last year. In comparison, Mahindra sells over 4000 units of the Scorpio every month in the same segment.
Having witnessed a rapid drop in market share to 7.94 percent, Tata Motors has the new HORIZONEXT strategy in place to revive its position in the market. Tata will be making a comeback this year starting with the Zest launch next month, followed by the launch of the Bolt hatchback later in the year. The updated Nano with an AMT gearbox is also scheduled for a launch this year, while the year will close with the launch of the updated Safari Storme.