Saturday, September 17, 2011


Merlingate would be an understatement for all the images we’ve been getting for the last few months  of the Tata Safari Merlin, sorry the Tata Merlin SUV like Tata motors would like to christen its latest SUV. After pretty much having a fair idea as to how the Merlin SUV will look, here is an image that has popped up on TheAutomotiveIndia, which shows the Merlin SUV in all its uncloaked glory.
The Tata Merlin SUV will sit just above the Tata Safari and is said to be Tata Motors’ standby option until an all new Tata Safari platform is evolved. Coming to the Tata Merlin, like most of the Tata Products which have sought a clear distinction from older Tata products, the Merlin SUV too is expected to dump the Safari moniker, thus simply sticking to the Tata Merlin SUV name.
Looks wise, the Merlin SUV takes a lot of inspiration from the various Land Rovers. From the flared headlamps housing projectors on the flatter front to the flattish rear, Land Rover’s design philosophy clearly seems to be inspiring Tata Motors’ design team, which isn’t a bad thing though.

All in all, the Merlin looks quite fresh given that the platform which it is based on is more than a decade old. Mechanically, the Merlin SUV is expected to come with the same 2.2 Liter DICOR engine generating 140 Bhp of peak power and 320 Nm of peak torque, with the big change being that the Merlin might get the dual mass flywheel that makes for a smoother engine and better gear shifting.
The Tata Safari Merlin is expected to retain the 7 seat layout with the two sideways facing jump seats housed in the boot of the SUV. While one hopes for improvements in fit and finish on the interiors, it would be interesting to see whether Tata actually steps up the gas on the interiors front.
The Tata Merlin SUV might be launched as early as the 27th of September to counter the Mahindra XUV500 SUV even as the Indian festive season looms. If this launch date isn’t when Tata will launch the Merlin SUV, there is a fat chance that the launch may well head to the 2012 Indian Auto Expo. That said, we’re betting on the former date for now. Watch this space!
Source: IndianCarsBikes 

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