Total Kms: 2660 kms
Fuel Consumed: 214.5-litres
Overall Mileage: 12.4 km/l
The Tata Safari Storme is the most spacious and easily the highest on comfort in its segment
So it all started with a comparison video where all the SUVs were compared and at the end of the video, the Tata Safari Storme just takes over the rest and drives out like a boss. It was at that moment when a biker like me got some interest in the Safari. My native is in Kutch, the border of Gujarat and there’s this mandatory visit every year. This time I thought for a roadtrip instead to have a good time and as I was keen with the Safari, I asked for it! Just a day before the actual trip, the Safari arrived. In decent condition, a 4×2 Tata Safari Storme VX was standing right there with the right rear-view mirror broken and just a few scratches to the extreme left of the front bumper.
The scratches on the front did indicate that having a good judgement while taking a turn will be necessary as this car is big, like seriously huge! And it would require good attention whilst driving or parking. The first thing to do before leaving was to get the mirror fixed and have the car cleaned properly. Tata Motors’ genuine mirror costs Rs. 4000/- while another option was to fix it with a local mirror as only the glass was broken and the fix worked out for Rs. 800/- instead. Got the car cleaned and tanked up again. 6 people onboard and a good amount of luggage got into the car and there was still room for 2 more suitcases or 1 adult to get in for a tight fit! That said, the Tata Safari Storme is super spacious.
With all the luggage and people onboard, the car became heavy yet did not go super low. It managed a good amount of ground clearance too. Flag off and the first destination was Ahmedabad. 500 kms on the map and a good 8-hour drive was the first thing to do. As we continued on the NH8, also known as the Mumbai-Gujarat highway, the car was cruising nicely at 100 km/hr and without any fuss it was gliding over the highway nicely. The manoeuvrability was still easy even with the amount of weight it carried. The first halt was after 280 kms and less than 4 hours were spent to cover this distance. That was fast, like pretty fast! A lunch and we leave again. Just after we crossed Vadodara there’s this Vadodara-Ahmedabad expressway which is a 2-lane superfast expressway which goes for 95 kms.
By this time I was bored cruising at 85-100 km/hr, no brainer and I went foot down. 140 km/hr on the meter and the car was running like a tank. Flashed the beam and the other cars were giving way to the beast. A good distance of 85 kms was covered within 45 minutes and to avoid a speeding ticket, we took a halt at the food mall and left after sometime. The destination was located on the Ring Road of Ahmedabad and this time the city traffic took charge! The most difficult place to drive after Bangalore is Ahmedabad. A person who can manage driving in Ahmedabad gains a hell of an experience and this was the time I actually felt the Safari was way too huge.
No traffic rules were being followed and people were riding/driving like they were the only ones in a hurry. All over, completing 500 kms took me 7 hours and another 30 kms in Ahmedabad took an extra 1.5 hours. We reached the place for stay and the moment I thought I would be super tired, I actually wasn’t! The Safari is so comfortable it doesn’t stress you out at all. A good 8 hour sleep and we leave for our final destination which is Mandvi, pretty much close to the Rann of Kutch. As we left from Ahmedabad, the fuel tank showed us only a quarter part left. 530 kms and still there’s fuel inside to do 100 more kms. The 63-liter fuel tank is good enough and the fuel consumption is also excellent for an SUV this big which is loaded with luggage and people in it.
The 320 Nm of torque does make the car go insane, way before the redline
As we hit the highway, the first halt was for breakfast and we tank up. A good 13.5 km/l was the fuel economy we got. And seriously these numbers were pretty awesome for the car. The Gujarat roads have been developed so good that the highway is now a minimum 2-lane road with literally no traffic. There will be just one thing that will bug us and that’s the number of toll collection booths on the highways. On these roads, the Tata Safari Storme did cruise nicely at 120 km/hr with the tachometer lying calm just below 3000 RPM.
We had an option to head directly to Mandvi but a task was assigned, which was to be completed in Bhuj. Hence we took a detour and headed towards Bhuj from Bhachau. The roads worsened as the 2-lane highway became a single road for both side traffic. Surprise bumps and speed breakers, the classical overtaking and everything started, the Safari Storme was just ready to make a move and yet was gliding nicely on the not so great roads. As we completed our task in Bhuj, we headed towards Mandvi and a whole new patch of tarmac almost as wide as a 2-lane road but through a patch of small hilly section, was awaiting for the SUV.
The road was bouncy yet the tarmac was sticky, the vehicle was going like a mind blowing dancer on the perfect tune. Continuous motion of the uphill and downhill with some tight corners and the rubber was sticking properly to the road. These 100 kms were the best part of the whole trip as each and every benefit of driving a Safari was experienced. Touchdown to the final destination and the odometer clocked another 390 kms within a 7 hour journey. A great welcome by family members there and the Safari gets parked right in front of the lawn. Now there was only one thing I was searching for at this moment and that was lunch. Driving continuously doesn’t tire you but makes you hungry. Had a great lunch and went out to check out the Safari again.
The front was completely covered with dead bugs! This was the time tiredness kicked in and I had to sleep. A small stroll in the evening to the Mandvi market and we planned to hit the beach early next morning. The next day, first thing we did was get in the car and go to the beach. This is one of the beaches in India where you can see both the sunrise and sunset together. The beach faces south and it is one of the best tourist attractions in Gujarat. I took the advantage of being early and took the Safari onto the beach. By the time I could get my excitement off, the SUV was stuck! I wish I had the 4×4 version at that time.
The car was stuck and the only option was to pull it back out. Pulling out a 2-tonne car wasn’t a joke and getting help early morning was again getting difficult. Got some help from the locals, tied the car to a few camels and tried to pull it out. Thank God the car was out! No more playing with the car now, chilled at the beach for some time and got back home. Had our lunch and we left for temple visits and to meet a few relatives. Everyone was more interested to see the Safari than to meet us. They even clicked a picture with it.
The day completed and we headed to Bhujpur for the night stay at another relative’s house. On the odo, the car had done a total of more than 1100 kms and required a tank refill. The fuel rates in Gujarat are almost Rs. 3/- cheaper than Mumbai. Another full tank and the fuel consumption comes down to 12.15 km/l. Again this wasn’t bad at all, for the way the Safari was driven through traffic and the highways. We finished our rituals and left for Ahmedabad exactly at noon. This time I opted the route from Gandhinagar and I was seriously amazed by the 3-lane highway all the way from Gandhinagar to Bhachau. These Gujarat roads have seriously become better.
Then the 2-lane highway to Ahmedabad continued and the Safari cruised nicely at 120 km/hr. A 7 hour drive again and we reached Ahmedabad and again comes the city traffic. This time the amount of traffic was insane and yet the Safari was going good. Thanks to the not so heavy clutch, my left foot did not cramp even once. A good sleep and the Safari rests as it has another 500 kms to be done in the next 24 hours. The next day we head back home with a good cruising speed of 100 km/hr and complete the whole drive in less than 8 hours again. Touch down and 2200 kms completed on the odo. Amazing 5 days and the Tata Safari Storme made it much more awesome.
The roadtrip just went from being great to an epic one. The Tata Safari Storme has won its place in my heart and is a very impressive SUV. The easy manoeuvrability, powerful engine and the amount of comfort it offers are some of the positives of the Safari Storme. Though it has been in the market for a long time now, it still has been a good player. There’s something unique about the Safari that makes it feel better than other SUVs. The day when I had to return the Safari was a sad day as there’s this connection you always make with a good car.
The Tata Safari Storme is not feature rich like the current generation SUVs and it’s time Tata should bring in some more feature to the Safari to make it much more appealing. That said, the Safari is easily the toughest, most powerful and comfortable vehicle in the Tata lineup.
Further Reading –
Tata Safari Storme Varicor 400 Review
Tata Safari Storme Review
Tata Safari Storme Long Term Review
Tata Safari Storme vs Mahindra Scorpio vs Renault Duster AWD
Tata Safari Storme vs Mahindra XUV500 vs Skoda Yeti vs Renault Duster
Picture Editing: Sri Manikanta Achanta