The Tata Safari Merlin got spied yet again and this time we have got some interior snaps courtesy of our friends at IAB of the most awaited consumer level SUV. Tata Safari has always been a performer and being the first affordable SUV with its mighty road presence and sheer size enjoying the likes of Politicians and Bollywood somewhat to the status which the Toyota Fortuner enjoys now, as the years passed by the car did not undergo any major makeover which makes the Safari look very dated.
The Safari Merlin is under development since a very long time, Tata Motors is leaving no stone unturned as Safari has always being an important product in their portfolio. Looking at the test mules of the Merlin it looks clear that the new Safari will still sport the conventional boxy design which today is still considered dated. No doubt that the car still has the same road presence but after seeing Fortuner on the road the Safari looks a tad smaller. On the front we can see a major change in the shape of the headlight which no longer is rectangular but in a swept back design. There is also a single projector headlight and turn indicators on the side view mirrors.
We already had shown you the naked image of the rear of the Merlin, the test mules also sport the same look which is not very conventional for today’s buyer. Talking about the insides too is a little depressing as we expected Aria like conventional interiors. Not really a great makeover on the inside apart from a new display meter, console, gear lever, leather wrapped steering wheel and some more minor cosmetic changes with airbags which are continued from the previous Safari. The Rear seats are also said to be redesigned, the Safari will continue to sport the jump seats in the third row which making sitting for two average sized adults difficult. With the current wave of third row seating, Tata should consider giving the Safari a comfortable third row seating making it a better deal to buy.
On the overall front Tata Safari Merlin doesn’t really look exciting, with the previous Safari being complained to have a harsh ride we expect that the new Safari will be at least on par with the Aria which is much more refined and smoother compared to Safari. Talking about the launch it is expected to come before this year ends or Tata may even wait for the Auto Expo which will happen in January 2012. The Safari Merlin has strong competition from the Force One and Mahindra’s XUV500.
Spy Pics Source – IAB