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Tata Motors have launched yet another special edition of their SUVs. We take a look at the Harrier and Safari Red #Dark Edition.

Story: Kurt Morris
Photography: Sanjay Raikar

Tata Motors have recently launched the Red #Dark edition of their popular SUVs, Safari and Harrier. The Red #Dark edition offers a sleek and stylish look with a host of new features and updates that make them stand out from the crowd. The cars come in an exclusive Atlas Black colour with a glossy black finish and several exterior and interior features that enhance their overall appeal. We delve deeper into the features and specifications of the Tata Motors Red #Dark edition Safari and Harrier to see and what makes them a great choice for SUV enthusiasts. These models have assisted Tata Motors in improving the perception of their brand and in gaining a competitive edge in the crowded car industry.

The Safari’s aesthetics remain unchanged for 2023. However, we tested the Red Dark variant of the SUV, which has a gloss charcoal black 18-inch alloy wheels wrapped in Bridgestone tyres and stylish red accents throughout. It gets red front brake callipers, a “#Dark” badge on the side, and a tiny red insert in the front grille. The SUV’s sportiness is undoubtedly highlighted by these red accents, which are added to the all-black design to increase its commanding presence on the road. For the Harrier, the story remains the same in terms of design details.

The first thing you’ll notice when you enter the Safari Red Dark edition is that it doesn’t feel at all like the regular Safari. The exterior features a Piano Black grille with Zircon Red accents, while the interior features a Carnelian Red colour scheme, Carnelian Red leatherette seats with diamond pattern quilting, a red “Dark” emblem on the head-rest, and red brake callipers.

The red inserts give the cabin a sportier feel than the typical Safari. The front seats are ventilated in addition to being supportive and comfy. The dashboard’s plastics are of decent quality and feel good to the touch. The captain seats in the Safari that we drove were comfortable after a long day of testing. The Red Dark model also has additional padding on the second-row head-rests that are adjustable, bringing the already plush seats up a notch. Additionally, this model includes a cool-looking red ambient mood and ambient lighting around the panoramic sunroof. The third row of the Safari, though not the most spacious in its segment, can comfortably accommodate two average-stature adults with sufficient head- and leg-room. However, taller individuals may find this row less accommodating. Most of the interior details apply to the Harrier as well except that the Harrier just comes with a five-seat configuration.

A new 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system is one of the main improvements Tata have made to the Safari and Harrier. For a very long time, both SUVs persisted with their tiny seven-inch screen, that is, until today, while other models in the market provided larger displays. This larger display has better graphics, a smoother display, and a higher resolution. One point to be noted here is that this infotainment system starts up remarkably fast as compared to the previous generation system. They are compatible with both Android Auto and well as Apple CarPlay.

One can access a number of features with this new infotainment system, including driver assistance features, automated climate control, and the ability to check the cabin’s air quality. Additionally, this system has widgets for user convenience. These widgets are sparse as of now, but more can be added later with software updates, such as drive information and TPMS. But we would have liked the driving assistance functions not to be buried three menus deep. They should be either more accessible or be on the home menu.

With features like electronic stability control (ESC), tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS), hill hold and descent control, all-wheel disc brakes, ABS with EBD, and up to six airbags, the Safari was already well-equipped for safety. Tata have now added a 360-degree camera and ADAS to this list.

As for the mechanical parts, both the SUVs remain unchanged; the Safari and Harrier do not receive any changes under the bonnet. It still has a two-litre diesel engine that produces 170 hp and 350 Nm and comes with either a six-speed manual or automatic gearbox. However, with this update, the engine complies with the updated BS6 phase two norms. The six-speed automatic transmission which we had one test does an adequate job of sending power to the front wheels. One can also monitor how much power and torque the engine is making via a small display screen in the instrument cluster. We saw a fuel-efficiency rating for the Safari at 8.5 km/l and for the Harrier at 10.3 km/l. This was achieved with a combination of highway and city driving.

The three available driving modes are Eco, City, and Sport. By switching among them, the throttle response and gear-shift logic are significantly altered, with the Sport mode holding the gear at higher rpm a lot more. At this point, you notice that it lacks refinement.

The driving and handling characteristics of these vehicles also remain the same. The Harrier offers a comfortable ride with its suspension set-up. The Safari, which is a larger SUV, offers a commanding driving position with its high seating position. The steering feels well-weighted and the suspension is tuned for comfort while maintaining stability at higher speeds. Being an SUV, there is some body-roll, though. Overall, both the Tata Harrier and Safari offer a comfortable driving experience.

Now let’s consider the main point: the price of the two Red Dark Edition cars tested here, the Safari and the Harrier. The Tata Harrier Red #Dark edition has been launched at Rs 21.77 lakh and the Safari Red #Dark edition starting from Rs 22.61 lakh (ex-showroom).

These Red #Dark edition SUVs offer a unique and stylish option for those looking for a new-age SUV. With their dark and bold exterior design, powerful engines, and advanced features, these vehicles are sure to turn heads on the road. However, they do face competition from other popular SUVs in the market, such as the Mahindra XUV700, Hyundai Creta, and Kia Seltos, which also offer impressive performance, design, and features. Ultimately, the choice comes down to personal preference and individual needs. The Tata Motors Red #Dark edition Safari and Harrier are definitely worth considering now that they are almost on a par with the competition.


About the author: Alshin Thomas



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