Friday, August 26, 2011

Tata Merlin (New Tata Safari) may be launched around September End


With the Force One SUV already launched and the Mahindra W201 World SUV set for a launch around the end of September, Tata Motors Limited is all set to usher its own challenger in the Indian premium SUV space with the Tata Safari Merlin SUV. According to reliable sources, this SUV is all set to be launched at the end of September and from the sheer timing of the launch, Tata seems to ensuring that the Mahindra W201 World SUV gets some stiff competition.  

As has been the trend with Tata cars recently, The Tata Safari Merlin SUV might be christened as Tata Merlin to ensure some differentiation for the new SUV model from the Tata Safari brand. This practice was followed for the Tata Manza and then for the recently launched facelift of the Tata Vista. Similarly, the Tata Safari Merlin, which essentially is an upgrade to the Tata Safari SUV, might be called the Merlin. Coming to what is new on the Tata Safari Merlin, first of all you get completely worked on looks.

The Merlin SUV will feature a lot of cues from Land Rovers including the flatter front end with flared headlamps. The rear end too is a marked departure from the Safari along with the disappearance of the spare wheel, which perhaps finds it way into the boot. The engine though will continue to remain the tried and tested 2.2 Liter DICOR turbodiesel unit producing 140 Bhp and 320 Nm. On the inside, the interiors are said to be a significant step up from the Tata Safari to make for a more premium look and feel. A few of the Aria’s interior bits might just make an appearance in the Merlin SUV.

The Merlin will be loaded with all the other bells and whistles along with ABS, EBD and Airbags being the de-facto safety bits on the SUV. The pricing of the Merlin will just begin where the Tata Safari SUV’s range ends and being typically Tata, expect it to be very competitive at just a shade under or over INR 10 Lakhs. The Merlin SUV is expected to be available both in 2 wheel drive and four wheel drive options although an automatic gearbox is still not a part of the equation.

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