Home / Features / Kia Seltos Tiger Trails To Tadoba – The Land of the Tigers

 

Kia Seltos – the top-selling SUV with the unique tiger-nose grille take a trip to the natural habitat of the animal: Tadoba Tiger Reserve.
Seltos Tiger Trail road trip travelogue by Car India

Tyger Tyger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

William Blake’s “The Tyger”, arguably one of the most famous poems written in the 1700s, comes to mind every time there is a reference to the majestic beast. Thus, it comes as no surprise when we decided to drive the Kia Seltos and go for a Tiger Trail in India.

Kia Tiger nose grille design
To give a little background, over a decade ago, Kia Motors hired a globally acclaimed designer to give their cars a distinct identity, one that’s instantly recognisable and leaves a lasting impression. The legendary designer came up with the striking “tiger nose” grille which beautifully narrows down at the centre as if the designer has pinched the grille to impersonate the fearless face of a tiger. This signature element has been a turning point for the brand since then, with the Korean car-maker creating waves in the automobile industry by introducing some of the most spectacular designs and stunning concepts.
Our obvious destination for the tiger-nose grille was to take it to the natural habitat of the animal: a Tiger Reserve. Our first destination was the famous Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve which is Maharashtra’s oldest and largest national park and has a high frequency of tiger sightings. The usual route via Solapur is close to 850 km, but since we had tested and were impressed by the Seltos’ performance and driveability, we decided to go through Aurangabad, which is a shorter route but known for some challenging sections.

We started from Pune in the wee hours. On the dark, empty roads, the Seltos’ bright Crown Jewel LED headlamps appeared like the glowing eyes of a beast on the prowl and even made a few scared strays run for cover. The Kia’s handsome face grabs your attention at first glance and, as you realize the connection with the majestic wild cat, it is bound to leave you with a lasting impression.
On the way out of Pune, we picked up a few friends from the airport and soon were driving towards Ahmednagar and drove past it before the city woke up. Starting early is a great idea for a road trip because you not just avoid traffic and cover more distance, but it is also safer as you get to drive longer during the daylight. I plugged my phone to Kia’s infotainment system and the Apple CarPlay made life super easy. My calls and messages were all a click of a button away. And so was the navigation system as it synced seamlessly my smartphone with the car’s 10.25-inch touchscreen. (Also Read: Kia Seltos Tiger Trails To Kanha Tiger Reserve)
Our drive for the next couple of hours was brisk as the location arrow on the map of the massive colour display inched rapidly closer towards Aurangabad. The 1.5-litre VGT diesel is one of the finest in the business because it is refined, efficient, and, most importantly, is BS VI-compliant. The oil-burner feels effortless to drive and is free from the turbo-lag diesel engines are usually prone to. When slowing down to negotiate bad patches of roads or going over speed-breakers, I didn’t need to go through the entire six-speed gearbox since most of the 250 Nm of torque is available right from 1,500 rpm.

Moreover, the suspension set-up of the Seltos ensures a great balance between sporty handling and passenger comfort. A quick look at the rear-view mirror and I spotted my friends sleeping like babies with the adjustable rear seat reclined even further back. Unaware of the torturous section of tarmac I was wrestling with, they were making most of the comfy seats, rear a-c vents, and, not to forget, the in-built air-purifier. Amused by the sight, I turned up the volume of the Bose music system to remain focused and wide awake and kept marching ahead. We had been on the road for nearly 15 hours — driving, scouting for locations, completing the photoshoot, and the usual food breaks. It was time to call it a day as we rolled in to our hotel in Yavatmal. I wasn’t as tired as I expected to be after a hard day of driving, so, after a refreshing shower, we were out for dinner to try some local cuisine.

 

About the author: Sarmad Kadiri

 

 

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