Here’s pitting the Safari against its key market rivals based on specifications…
Tata Motors has launched the all-new Safari as its new flagship in the country. As is the case with almost every other Tata model, the Safari is priced quite aggressively. Upon its resurrection, the Safari nameplate is pitted against the likes of Mahindra XUV500 and MG Hector Plus. While the choice here can be confusing as such, we are here to throw more light into the specifications of these three and thus be of help…
While all the three are big three-row SUVs, the Mahindra XUV500 is the oldest of the lot and comes just as a 7 seater. The Safari and the Hector Plus are both available in both 6 and 7 seater configurations, with the 6 seaters getting comfortable captain chairs in the second row. Speaking of the dimensions, here are the figures:
|Tata Safari||MG Hector Plus||Mahindra XUV500|
|Ground Clearance (mm)||NA||192||200|
The all new Safari is the largest car in its segment. It is considerably longer than the XUV500 and has slight upper hand over the Hector Plus as well. It is wider than the XUV and undercuts the Hector Plus in width by a decent margin. In terms of height, it is indeed the tallest offering in the segment with the XUV settling for the second place by just 1 mm. Speaking of the wheelbase, the Hector Plus scores. However, with all these considered, the Safari’s cabin feels the most spacious and extremely airy. Though it has the same wheelbase as the Harrier, the Safari has significantly grown rear overhangs, making more room at the rear.
Third Row Seats
The third row feels the most comfortable on the Safari. There is a generous amount of space on the third bench here. Tata claims some best-in-class numbers for the space here, which you won’t disbelieve once you actually get in here. The Hector Plus stands second and the XUV has the most tightly packed third bench of the lot.
The all new Tata Safari comes with a decent array of equipment and features. It gets a large 8.8-inch floating touchscreen infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay along with Tata’s iRA connected car system, 9 speaker premium audio system from JBL, 7-inch digital instrumentation, auto dimming IRVM, drive modes, panoramic sunroof, 6 way powered driver seat, electronic parking brake and Xenon HID Projector headlamps.
The MG Hector Plus is also feature-packed and offers the likes of wireless charging, ventilated seats, 360 degree camera, auto-dimming IRVM, panoramic sunroof, iSmart Connected car system, 10.4 inch touchscreen infotainment unit with Gaana app integration and a 7 inch instrumentation display.
The XUV500 being the most dated offering, falls short in offering modern day gizmos and settles for things like projector headlamps with LED DRLs, electric sunroof, 6 way power adjustable driver seat, cooled glove box, a decent sized touchscreen infotainment unit with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and smartphone connectivity, etc.
|Safari||XUV 500||MG Hector Plus|
|Engine||2.0L Diesel||2.2L Diesel||2.0L Diesel | 1.5 turbocharged petrol|
|Power||170||158||170 | 143|
|Torque||350||360||350 | 250|
|Transmission||6 speed manual, 6 speed automatic||6 speed manual, 6 speed automatic||6-speed manual, 6-speed DCT, 8 CVT|
The MG Hector Plus remains the only player here to offer a petrol engine as of now. This engine gets mild-hybrid technology to give the overall efficiency an additional boost. The Safari gets the same Fiat-sourced 2.0L diesel engine that powers the Hector Plus as well, but comes paired to a new 6-speed manual gearbox. The automatic box on the Safari is a torque converter unit, while the Hector Plus gets DCT and CVT autos. All three SUVs get a front-wheel-drive configuration for now.
- The all-new Tata Safari comes loaded with safety tech like Hill Descent Control, Hill Hold ABS, EBD, 6 airbags, traction control, corner stability control, ESP, Terrain Response Modes, rear parking sensors, reverse parking camera, rear disc brakes etc.
- The MG Hector Plus offers features like hill hold, ISOFIX mounts, ABS, EBD, rear disc brakes, and airbags.
- The XUV500’s safety suite includes 6 airbags, Hill Descent Control, ESP, Hill Hold, Rollover Mitigation, ABS, EBD, 4 disc brakes, rear parking sensors etc.
The MG Hector Plus is available in 4 variants- Style, Super, Smart, and Sharp. The MG Hector Plus petrol prices start at INR 13.35 lakh and go upto INR 19.10 lakh for the top spec, petrol powered MG Hector Plus Sharp. The prices for the diesel start INR 14.66 lakh, and go upto 19.43 lakh for the Diesel sharp variant.'
|Variant (P)||Price (lakh)|
|Style MT 7 Seater MT||13.44|
|Super Hybrid 7 Seater MT||14.94|
|Smart Petrol AT||17.33|
|Smart petrol CVT||17.33|
|Sharp Hybrid Petrol MT||17.97|
|Sharp Petrol AT||19.02|
|Sharp Petrol CVT||19.02|
|Variant (D)||Price (lakh)|
|Style MT 7 Seater||14.75|
|Smart MT 7 Seater||17.73|
|Select MT 7 Seater||18.55|
The Mahindra XUV500 comes in six different variants, with the base spec W7 bearing a price tag of 15.27 lakh. The fully loaded W11 Option with automatic transmission would set you back by as much as 19.71 lakh. The W9 AT is the highest selling variant out of these.
|W11 Option MT||18.50|
|W11 Option AT||19.71|
The Tata Safari is available in 11 different variants, including the 6 seater guise for the higher trims, To further add to this, there are also four variants with the Adventure Edition suit on, as well. The base spec XE starts at INR 14.73 lakh and the top-of-the-line XZA Plus 6 seater would demand as much as INR 21.32 lakh to own. The Adventure suite starts with the Tata Safari XZ Plus 6 Seater Adventure Edition bearing a price tag of INR 20.26 lakh. The fully loaded Adventure Edition Safari with the automatic transmission would cost you 21.52 lakh.
|XZ Plus 6 Seater||19.99|
|Adventure Suit Range||Price (Lakh)|
|XZ Plus 6 Seater Adventure Edition||20.26|
|XZ Plus Adventure Edition||20.26|
|XZA Plus 6 seater Adventure Edition||21.52|
|XZA Plus Adventure Edition||21.52|
As obvious, the Safari offers more choices to the buyers than all its competition. There is a Safari variant suiting the needs and demands of almost every buyer in this segment!
Those looking for a diesel automatic SUV would strictly have to choose between the Safari and XUV500. The Hector Plus misses out on an automatic gearbox on its diesel guise. The base spec diesel automatic of the XUV500 will come to you for a price of 16.40 lakh while that of the Safari would cost you 17.30 lakh.
But, with the additional sum you put on the car, the Safari offers you a much larger proportion, upmarket design, more space in the third row, and a better performing automatic gearbox. Should you choose to spend 20-ish lakhs for an automatic SUV, we would recommend you to put your money on the Safari XZA, (more VFM over the XZA Plus as far as we can decipher) as the XUV500 W11 Option AT, though significantly cheaper, feels quite aged as well.
Go for the Hector Plus only if you are OK with a diesel-manual combination and if you are obsessed with technology and other connected car features. The turbo petrol-powered Hector Plus could of course be a choice if you are ok with the drop in fuel economy figures over diesel and are obsessed with an automatic transmission.
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