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Old 30th July 2010, 14:32   #1651
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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post

With two people and assorted luggage our white elephant weighs whopping 2450kgs, and this means more wear and tear for tires, bushes, tie rods, steering bushes as well as the drive train.
True weight is definitely an issue coupled with component quality or to put it other way round if innova or qualis was 4X4 it would have performed even better.

Coming to taxis they do a lot of jugad maintenance instead of going to A.S.S and paying hefty bills so that why I asked the first Q is it really required to change everything or there could have been some shortcut.
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Old 30th July 2010, 14:50   #1652
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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
when a mfr sells a "SUV" it has to be designed in a way that it can take more abuse than multi utility vehicles, but with the safari this definitely does not appear to be the case. A part of it has to do with the weight.
With two people and assorted luggage our white elephant weighs whopping 2450kgs, and this means more wear and tear for tires, bushes, tie rods, steering bushes as well as the drive train.
IMO, the weight of the Safari has nothing to do with your travails. As you yourself say, this one is not designed to take abuse on a long term basis. The suspension components are far too flimsy as I see it, and ought to have been made heavier as well as of more durable materials.

As an analogy, you can't play a football match wearing rubber chappals, and not expect the straps to break, just because someone put spikes on the soles! Such footwear is good for the occasional muddy patch, but not 90 minutes of kicking and running.
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Old 30th July 2010, 14:52   #1653
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Amit, an excellent comparison of OTR vs Himalayan/Desert trips

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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
I cannot fathom is why the suspension related component replacement in the Indica was at similar intervals to the safari when she was doing himalayan trips.
Tanveer, I know you keep saying this very often but the fact of the matter is - the Indica may have gone to the Himalayas, so did our Ford Ikon 1.6ZXI. The question is - did it cover the type of Himalayan terrain your Safari has covered? IMHO - No!

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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Moreover, taxi drivers in ladakh(innova/qualis) do same terrains for 3-4 months in a year. I make maybe 4-5 trips in a year.
I am sure they do not see those many suspension jobs.
As mentioned by Amit, these guys will not replace till it breaks down completely. In our (and your) case, I don't think we will wait till it breaks completely before changing it. Therein lies the difference. And I really think you should reserve your opinion/comments about the condition of the suspension on one of these Taxis till such time that you've actually done a Manali-Leh bone-jarring ride in one of them

Last edited by suman : 30th July 2010 at 14:54.
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Old 30th July 2010, 15:22   #1654
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Suman, what you say is perfectly valid. But I am talking about odo reading of 20,000kms. At that point of time, when the bush troubles started appearing, the Safari had done much less daunting terrains than the indica.
As of today, she has seen much worse than indica, but not when the troubles first started appearing.
Case in point - Most safari's the center pin bush related troubles.
Add to that my inspection of the tie rods and bushes. Similar bushes do duty in gypsy. I was hoping the safari to have beefier and more durable stuff.
A little extra cost of input, even at the cost of increasing the price slightly could have made the safari a much better expedition vehicle. The DNA is there, as is the opportunity. Just few bits and pieces need to be polished, and all the reliability troubles of safari will go away. Its the simple things that need changing, not the big stuff.
Being at the receiving end of retros and counter retros, I can list a few things right out of memory
For example
1. Radiator - There is a pipe from coolant retrun and refill reservoir to the radiator cap. It can easily come loose of the clamp and then bend, leading to blockage. Tata can spend 4-5rs here and put a better clamp and beefier pipe
2. Turbo hose failure - Tata did a retro, but if they had gone for better quality clamp, many people would not have been stranded. Extra cost, 10rs?
3. Cam sensor failure in 3.0 - Fault tolerance compromise. Get a higher grade sensor(even military grade). Cost - few rs. In Semiconductors, it just cost a few rs more to go from consumer grade to military grade
4. Center pin - Design change, and a teflon bush - All problems solved. Extra cost, again a few rs, but no repetitive greasing required
5. Power window channels - The most rattle prone area. Use a heavier guide channel. Will not get bent or out of alignment - Again a few rs
6. ECU related woes - Improper testing. Testing more with local fuel could have led to better software from day 1, rather than a retro. Costs saved, hundreds of injector replacements
7. Suspension bush issues - Teflon or "high strength rubber". Few hundreds in cost of entire safari
8. Timing belt issues - A lot of 2.2s were stranded due to timing belt cut. Mine had the belt half cut. Design issue again. So much money wasted on retro. Using a better design instead of cost saving design from day one would have worked wonders
9. Alignment issues - Remember the sumo days when alignment used to be off so frequently. Tie rods, thats the culprit. Tata fixed this partially, but a slight design change and using a heavier ball joint can again fix this. Export Safari's which our italian friends use have this design, which is more durable, but costs slightly more


My estimate? An increase in input cost of 6000-7000rs can make the safari reliability at par with the Fortuner?
Why does this not happen then?
Again, my theory, could be completely wrong.
Engineer goes to marketing and sales team and proposes. Well they shoot it down?
Why?
Because in their MBA school they read how ford tries to save 30-40 cents also in their production car. So 6000rs is a big amount.
but they do not understand that when you make a million cars a year, a dollar goes a long way.
But safari dies and tooling is 10 years old, and she sells 11000-12000 units a year.
If a sale cost increase of 10,000rs results in a vehicle as reliable as the Japanese, it will push sales to scorpio levels(2000+ a year). The resulting profit will be huge.

This is what happens when "textbook knowledge" is used, rather than ground knowledge. What is applicable in detroit may not be applicable here.
If only Tata guys had developed the safari like BD and Spike are doing with the Thar, they would have had a winner on their hands.
without these silly niggles, the safari is the best all terrain SUV soft roading vehicle money can buy south of 30 lakhs. It has all the underpinnings to be a winner, yet the silly weak links in the chain have spoiled its reputation and sales potential.
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Old 30th July 2010, 15:29   #1655
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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
wow! Yours is a petrol safari I think? As I mentioned, this is the wider track used in export models, and tie rods are supposed to last a lot more!
But 200,000kms are incredible!
What about suspension, have the shock absorbers and dampers ever been changed?
Yes, the Shocks are changed once, but they have travelled another 60-70K kms after the change and donot make noise even if I jump a speed breaker with 7 passengers. About robustness of the vehicle & suspension, then whole country knows the condition of roads in M.P 2 years back. I never remembered if I changed the brake pads till now or not.

P.S: Mine is a TCIC:
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...-review-2.html

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Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
LOL. That's 20,50,00,00,000 km (or 20.5 billion km).
My mistake. It should have been 2.05L kms.

Last edited by mercedised : 30th July 2010 at 15:34.
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Old 30th July 2010, 15:36   #1656
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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Suman, what you say is perfectly valid. But I am talking about odo reading of 20,000kms. At that point of time, when the bush troubles started appearing, the Safari had done much less daunting terrains than the indica.
You are correct but I would say the first round of trouble was more about QC (rather, lack of it!) than anything else - defective bushes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
My estimate? An increase in input cost of 6000-7000rs can make the safari reliability at par with the Fortuner?
Why does this not happen then?
Again, my theory, could be completely wrong.
Engineer goes to marketing and sales team and proposes. Well they shoot it down?
Why?
Because in their MBA school they read how ford tries to save 30-40 cents also in their production car. So 6000rs is a big amount.
You have a valid point here but its not only the Marketing & Sales teams. I was having a discussion a year ago with one of my acquaintances & he was telling me about how they (TML) are going in blindly for cheap Chinese components without giving a damn about the resultant drop in quality. And these decisions are driven by the Head Honchos, not the S&M teams!

Also, to again come back to it, I believe that it is laxity at the point of purchase which causes such a high rate of failure. If you compare TML & M&M, 80% or more of component suppliers are common to both. So why would the Safari have a higher rate of failure compared to, say, a Scorpio? Simple - probably because the guy who is inspecting & purchasing at TML is being more lax than his counterpart at M&M! I could be wrong but that's my pet theory........


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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
If only Tata guys had developed the safari like BD and Spike are doing with the Thar, they would have had a winner on their hands.
At the risk of sounding cynical, I would like to see at what price point the Thar is finally launched & how many takers it has before I comment on this statement.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
without these silly niggles, the safari is the best all terrain SUV soft roading vehicle money can buy south of 30 lakhs.
Agree with you 150% - I still haven't been able to zero in on a replacement option yet at this price point & comfort level.

Last edited by suman : 30th July 2010 at 15:39.
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Old 30th July 2010, 15:37   #1657
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Good post tanveer , I don't know much about other things in the list but yes the hose clamps in whole engine bay are clip type which do not save any cost , I think only time to assemble and fix is less. The clamp with nut and bolt is 7 rs at T.A.S.S.

I wrote about this clamp thing on 2.2 VTT thread ( for my PS fluid hose clamp) and also on Pramod's Scorpio 4X4 AT thread which was stranded due to an AT fluid hose coming off again due to clamp so a 7 rs saving resulted in AT box change + full painting + host of other things.

I think before a journey to nowhere in Safari and Scorpio look at all the small clip type hose clamps and get then replaced with clamps with nut and bolt around 200-300 Rs will increase the reliability by many folds.

About suspension I remember reading last years Raid De' Ladakh thread 3 out of 10 Scorpios had some problem we can discount one belonging to H.V Kumar as it is more then 2 lakh KM but still 20% is big number.

So somehow I feel if you need a super reliable SUV in budget for Ladakh you need to build it after due modifications to your stock Safari and Scorpio.

Good thing is these mods seeing the list you have prepared will be under 10K if one knows what to do and can find a garage to do them
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Old 30th July 2010, 15:57   #1658
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Originally Posted by amitk26 View Post
So somehow I feel if you need a super reliable SUV in budget for Ladakh you need to build it after due modifications to your stock Safari and Scorpio.

Good thing is these mods seeing the list you have prepared will be under 10K if one knows what to do and can find a garage to do them
This is precisely the point I wanted to hear! Couple of problems here:

1. Garage: A lot of people might swear by their mechanics, but I am not sure if they'd be better than the TASS!

2. Warranty: Lets consider that we get parts changed what about the warranty? The TASS are the first guys to point fingers on the non-OEM spares in case of a problem!

Tejas
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Old 30th July 2010, 16:10   #1659
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Originally Posted by bantejas View Post
This is precisely the point I wanted to hear! Couple of problems here:

1. Garage: A lot of people might swear by their mechanics, but I am not sure if they'd be better than the TASS!

2. Warranty: Lets consider that we get parts changed what about the warranty? The TASS are the first guys to point fingers on the non-OEM spares in case of a problem!

Tejas
Valid point T.A.S.S willingly changes clamps to clamp with nut and bolt at-least ( I have got that done already) , Suspension warranty is only till 35 K Km.

So even if clamps + hose + bushes are taken care of may be half the reliability will be achieved with low tech non-warranty voiding mods.

ECU software changes are already retrofitted from the list of tanveer.
Don't know about sensors etc.
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Old 30th July 2010, 18:18   #1660
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Some real good quality stuff being discussed here. I have picked up some great points for the preventive maintenance of my vehicle. Thanks Tanveer, Suman & Amit
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Old 31st July 2010, 00:47   #1661
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Originally Posted by suman View Post
Agree with you 150% - I still haven't been able to zero in on a replacement option yet at this price point & comfort level.
Isn't that precisely why Tata does not think it really needs to improve quality?

The closest competitor to the Safari has been the Scorpio only. The Gurkha is practically non-existent (thanks to even higher initial quality levels as compared to the Safari ).

Also consider the fact that 10+ lakh rupee variants of the Safari (GX and VX) are very few on the road (maybe it demonstrates that the 20 lakh Endy / Pajero are alternatives for many people looking at the VX, even if you can buy a VX and another LX for that kind of money)
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Old 31st July 2010, 08:07   #1662
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tsk1979 : Cost - few rs. In Semiconductors, it just cost a few rs more to go from consumer grade to military grade

Again, my theory, could be completely wrong.
Missing link here is the volumes. How many chips of a particular type are manufactured ? Compare that to how many cam sensors are manufactured. Then the usage - one is national security. Far bigger number of people & their mission can get affected if that militar device fails than when one private individual gets affected by one cam sensor failure.

But yes, these guys need to spend a little to save a little more. The cost incurred in better components can help them focus their energies & resources on better products for the future.
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Old 2nd August 2010, 10:03   #1663
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Hi Tanveer,
Sorry going off the topic, need numbers for Panchali resort in Chitkul. Heading that side next week. Want to make prior bookings. Any chance u'd have them?
Also suggest on the best place to stay in chitkul. I've heard panchali to be the best there.
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Old 2nd August 2010, 10:26   #1664
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Tanveers Safari has undergone such Abuses which no other car would have withstood. Yes agreed he's faced troubles. But lets not get into a Safari Bashing thread.

Lets stop going off-topic. We have 200 odd Safari's on this Forum. Why make a BIG hue and cry over ONE SINGLE SAFARI

Those who are happy and satisfied with the product, We know the truth. lets enjoy.

and

Those (hardly 1 or 2) who own one and feel its a bad product....... Sorry.........! Bad luck.
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Old 2nd August 2010, 11:44   #1665
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Hi Abhikov, contact ADC for the numbers. He stayed there on his trip.
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