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Old 14th January 2013, 19:43   #361
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Here is a video of the Inside experience from the Terrpaod event at Bangalore on 11 Jan 2013. I am sitting at the back with the camera and it's a friend in front.


Last edited by Musa : 14th January 2013 at 19:49. Reason: Full Youtube link vs the earlier short one which did not embed.
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Old 14th January 2013, 20:23   #362
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Amazinf video, the best part of it was the auto climb without touching the accelerator and also the decend without touching the brakes. The 360 spin was also good.
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Old 14th January 2013, 23:14   #363
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Nice video, however i have one question ..

What is the squeaking noise from 0.25min on-wards ??
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Old 14th January 2013, 23:16   #364
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I went for the Tata Storme Terrapod event at Bangalore on 11 Jan 2013. But first, my thanks to LukeSkyWalker for posting the info on Team-Bhp, if it were not for that post, I would not have gone.

I saw the post on the evening of Jan 10 and was both disappointed & excited. The former because I missed one day and excited because I had the next day to look forward to! Wanted to tell me wife to come back from work early the next day but forgot so the next day, Friday morning I tried reaching her at her work (she is a Dentist) but could not get through. Also being So sent her an SMS to be ready as soon as I am back from Friday prayers. Wanted to leave as soon as possible, expecting a crowd in the last few hours.

Got back from prayers but wifey had not seen the sms and was not ready! Grrrrr, told her the programme and we left after wolfing down lunch. Left at 3pm and reached the venue in 10min thanks to Google Navigation which worked like a breeze. I didn't realise I lived so close to the venue!

At the ground was expecting a crowd but nope, that was not to be. There were some 6 cars packed and the place was very uncrowded. There were 2 Stormes 4x4s doing their thing and one more vehicle for TDs.

In a few minutes, met an organiser from Tata Motors itself whom I shall identify as V due to the nature of the conversations. V is a very friendly and approachable chap. He is on Team-Bhp but not officially! Very forthcoming and honest in his approach. Felt very comfortable asking him direct questions ...

Here are some snippets from my interaction with V:
Quite a few interesting inputs I think. My thanks to V for being so forthcoming.

Me: "Why did Tata take so long to launch the Storme? It's been more than a year since it was displayed!"
V: "We were really testing it for the last one year. Wanted to offer a good, well sorted vehicle."

Me: "What's wrong with you guys at Tata??? You don't offer a 2 DIN system and some goodies. You are willing to offer it on the Manza but not on the Storme? I agree that SUV fans may not really bother but still ...???"
V: A sheepish smile and no response for awhile, then, "We also asked this question internally at Tata but we did not get a response. But we are working on it and you should see it in 2-3 months."
Me: "So there will be a upgrade to the dash in 2-3 months?"
V: "Yes!"
Me: "So can I book a Stome now and take delivery only after the new dash is out?"
V: ".... hmmm, don't think that will work ..."

Me: "Will you guys ever offer the Storme with a 3rd row seat?"
V: An emphatic "No! Then it will not a SUV!"

Me: "How come there is such a small crowd? I was expecting a lot more people. You haven't advertised about this event?"
V: "Well, you know if you have to advertise, then it has to be Times of India no? Tatas has a problem with the ToI group after the 2G fisaco."

Me: "Why did you not have this event over a weekend? You would have gotten a lot more participation no?
V: "Yes, actually we wanted to have it at Palace Grounds this weekend but it was not available so ... Also, we did not want to push the event to later as it would be too late. We may have it again over a weekend later."

Me: "Are these the same Stormes that you had a Gurgaon event?"
V: "Yes, the same."

Me: "Where is the next Terrapod?"
V: "We are going to Chennai and then to Hyderabad.

It was really a pleasure to have this open conversation with V. Interspersed of course with a lot of other tit bits which I shall not report here. We were watching other participants doing their rounds and it was clear already that the Storme is a very capable vehicle. And now, it was our turn ...

V ushered us to the Storme for our ride. Christopher (Chris) was our demo driver. Both waited patiently till my wife in the rear seat and I in the front passenger seat were buckled in. Christopher, a very pleasant chap turned out to be a rally driver and pro photographer took us through the Terrapod and explained stuff as we went along ...

The Rumbler.
Chris aligned the Storme at the Rumbler and just let the Storme crawl through it. The Rumbles were a good 4-5 inches high each opposed alternately. The Storme of course just went through it without any hesitation.

The Hill.
Next came the Hill Climb & Descent. Chris stopped the Storme before the ramp, put it in 4x4L and let it go up & down. There is that point on the climb when all you see in front is the sky and when you look out the side, you feel you are taking off like in a plane. Cool! Then the Storme just rolls over the top as though it was the most natural thing to do and then heads down at the same speed. And there is the point down when all you see is the ground in front and you wonder if the Storme is going to burrow into it!

The Storme did this WITHOUT any inputs to the accelerator & brake, and all in one absolutely smooth continuous fashion. Very impressive indeed!

The Sea Saw.
A test of driver skill for sure. Chris lets the Storme climb and holds it just at point where the Sea Saw gently tips over. There was another drive where the driver would allow the Storme to slide back just as the Sea Saw began to tip. He did this a few times, fun to watch.

The Slope.
This is not for the faint hearted! Chris lets the Storme climb it and puts all the 4 wheels on the Slope. And then ... he just stops the Storme at the slope. He says we are at 49 degrees sideways! Wow, with my wife sitting behind the driver and me in the front passenger seat, I was literally looking down at her a good 2-3 feel below me sideways!

As we realised that we were NOT going to topple and it was all safe an secure, Chris lets the Storme gently slide off the Slope. Amazing grip & experience!

The Doughnuts.
Wifey wants to get off at this point! Chris, very reassuringly says he will drive "slow" and to tell him to stop at any point if she wants!

Chris did the doughnuts like a charm. Inside you really have a very very different experience. The world just seems to spin gently around. There is no rumble & tumble that one would expect when looking from outside. And yes, must mention, there was not a spec of dust that entered the Storme during the doughnuts!

The Bumble Bee.
The Bumble Bees were a good 2 to 2 1/2 feet high and the Storme just went through them without a fuss. Now one knows what it can really do in ravines and all!

Alas, the end ...
Finally, a gentle stop at the tented area. A request to wait a few moments for the outside dust to settle from Chris and disembarked. There was the customary photo in front of the Storme and a thanks for coming.

Found V and continue chatting ...

Have to make a point that these are the same Stormes that are going for all the Terrapod events looks like and they have already run through this abuse at least a few hundred times each. After all that they have been through through, they did not rattle or feel "loose". They felt solid and very well put together.

Given that if I had a Storme then I would probably never do even once what these Stormes have done, it seems that the Tata's have really worked hard on the build issues and sorted them out to a large extent.

Well, that was it !
Overall, very impressed.
The Storme has definitely smitten me.

I hung around for another hour or so trying to get my friends to come over to experience the Storme at the Terrapod. So luckily, I went twice on the round. Looks like the Tata guys were quite happy to let you go as many times as you liked !!

Oh yes, I went to a (decently long) TD of the Storme after this and to my luck, an Aria from a dealer was there when I got back so did a Storme & Aria TD back to back. Great comparative experience. More on that soon ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Enigmatic View Post
Nice video, however i have one question ..

What is the squeaking noise from 0.25min on-wards ??

Yes, there is a squeaking noise when the Storme is over the Rumbler, Bumble Bee and the Slope. The noise is not there at other times. I really can't be sure of the source of the noise but I am guessing it's from the suspensions and / or from the twisting of the chassis when the Storme goes through these parts of the course.

Last edited by mobike008 : 15th January 2013 at 15:16. Reason: back to back posts. Please read the rules before proceeding
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Old 15th January 2013, 07:59   #365
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Enigmatic View Post
What is the squeaking noise from 0.25min on-wards ??
There were squeaks from the back side of the cabin. These 3 Stormes have been used only for demo, and there have been a huge number of stunts during this period. The creaks & squeaks are natural - would be so for any brand of car that is used that way. Ask any jeeper who takes his jeep off-road, and he can tell you.
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Old 15th January 2013, 09:37   #366
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@ Musa , Nice review on the Terrapod event but i have an query on the TML representative statement saying that ""No! Then it will not a SUV" ?

Does this mean Fortuner , Pajero, Montero and Land Cruiser and likes are also not SUV's since they offer front facing seats ? I feel that this comment is more due to the lack of effort from TML to spend time and effort to design a proper front facing 3rd row seats. I understand if there is no space but Safari is almost as long as the Fortuner and would have appreciated the 3rd row seats. Probably would have needed a re-worked body and more time but it should not have been impossible.

Many people including myself need the 3rd row front facing seats for short/medium trips with the extended family as and when need arises but do not like the Innova due to the MUV styling. Hence the option by default turns to the XUV500 as there are no other vehicles in this price bracket which looks like an SUV. I hate not having options since when i bought the Indica it was the default option since nothing else existed in the price bracket.

The same seems to holding true for my next planned purchase also.
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Old 15th January 2013, 11:04   #367
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musa View Post
Oh yes, I went to a (decently long) TD of the Storme after this and to my luck, an Aria from a dealer was there when I got back so did a Storme & Aria TD back to back. Great comparative experience. More on that soon ...
I did the same a couple of weeks ago. Look forward to reading your comparo!

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Originally Posted by Aceman82 View Post
Many people including myself need the 3rd row front facing seats for short/medium trips with the extended family as and when need arises but do not like the Innova due to the MUV styling. Hence the option by default turns to the XUV500 as there are no other vehicles in this price bracket which looks like an SUV.

What about the Aria? The Pure version would come in at the same price point with the discounts I think.

Last edited by ebonho : 15th January 2013 at 11:07.
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Old 15th January 2013, 11:18   #368
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aceman82 View Post
@ Musa , Nice review on the Terrapod event but i have an query on the TML representative statement saying that ""No! Then it will not a SUV" ?

Does this mean Fortuner , Pajero, Montero and Land Cruiser and likes are also not SUV's since they offer front facing seats ? I feel that this comment is more due to the lack of effort from TML to spend time and effort to design a proper front facing 3rd row seats.

Many people including myself need the 3rd row front facing seats for short/medium trips with the extended family as and when need arises but do not like the Innova due to the MUV styling. Hence the option by default turns to the XUV500
Hi Aceman,

I completely agree with you, though it did not cross my mind to ask him whether Fortuner etc are not SUVs I have his contact and will definitely ask him in my next interaction with him. He will probably give me another sheepish smile ... but lets see.

I also am in the same boat as you as regards wanting a 3rd row for extended family trips etc and NOT really liking MUV styling. But would I consider the XUV? Well, I was, esp given its 3rd row and all the gadgets but reading all the stuff on the Niggles page of the XUV has honestly gotten me a little spooked, esp since this would be my first SUV. I would give XUV at least another year before they sort out the many issues!

I too of the opinion that if the Tatas want then they can fit a 3rd row seat. They just have to design it! Just put the 2nd row on rails like make space for a 3rd row, even if its a "smaller" 3rd row on like in the Aria (but not like the Endeavour please!) I forget where the T-Bhp thread is but there was someone who had fabricated a pretty good 3rd row seat for the Safari. Luckily, I know a good fabricator friend and that will be my last resort, - IF I finally go for the Storme. My purchase decision is still a year or away and I guess a lot of things will happen by then!

Cheers,
musa
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Old 15th January 2013, 11:21   #369
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aceman82 View Post
@ Musa , Nice review on the Terrapod event but i have an query on the TML representative statement saying that ""No! Then it will not a SUV" ?

Does this mean Fortuner , Pajero, Montero and Land Cruiser and likes are also not SUV's since they offer front facing seats ? I feel that this comment is more due to the lack of effort from TML to spend time and effort to design a proper front facing 3rd row seats. I understand if there is no space but Safari is almost as long as the Fortuner and would have appreciated the 3rd row seats. Probably would have needed a re-worked body and more time but it should not have been impossible.

Many people including myself need the 3rd row front facing seats for short/medium trips with the extended family as and when need arises but do not like the Innova due to the MUV styling. Hence the option by default turns to the XUV500 as there are no other vehicles in this price bracket which looks like an SUV.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
What about the Aria? The Pure version would come in at the same price point with the discounts I think.
He may feel the Aria does not really look like an SUV and I would agree,(though trust me it is more capable than many so called SUV's in many aspects that matter) also infact the prestige and pleasure varient itself would be very close to XUV pricing post discounts even the Pride 4X4 is not too far from the W8 AWD.

The Fortuner Rear Seats are not really that comfortable (actually nor are the rest of them) due to the raised floor vs the Innova. Infact have had the occation to travel in the Landcruiser last row and infact that too is not too spacious unlike the Merc GL rear row which I feel is the only one that betters the Innova last row.

Yep TATA could have made the Safari Last row a bit better but then every vehicle need not match others with the best third row. We need to take it for what it is and it is really a very comfortable 5 seater with the option of taking 2 more kids on short drives only. The additional two seats serve a greater purpose in enabling TATA to meet norms for 7 seaters rather than provide for a people carrier.

Last edited by ACM : 15th January 2013 at 11:24.
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Old 15th January 2013, 12:23   #370
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Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
What about the Aria? The Pure version would come in at the same price point with the discounts I think.
No offence to any Aria owners but for me personally it looks like a Van. And why would i want to buy something something which sells 20 units per month and is guaranteed to be a depreciation disaster.

If i want something MUV looking then i would not think more than the Innova in that price bracket , it would be an eyes closed decision irrespective of what Tata offers but i need something which looks like a SUV and can seat 7 people and hence would love to consider Storme if there is some type of front facing seats. This is true for most of the SUV buying public.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Musa View Post
Hi Aceman,

I completely agree with you, ...............

Luckily, I know a good fabricator friend and that will be my last resort, - IF I finally go for the Storme. My purchase decision is still a year or away and I guess a lot of things will happen by then!
Fabricating a seat is just not possible since one would not be sure of the stability of those seats in accidents. I also would not mind waiting for some 6-8 months to see where Tata goes with the Storme.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ACM View Post
He may feel the Aria does not really look like an SUV and I would agree,(though trust me it is more capable than many so called SUV's in many aspects that matter)..........................

The Fortuner Rear Seats are not really that comfortable (actually nor are the rest of them) due to the raised floor vs the Innova. Infact have had the occation to travel in the Landcruiser last row and infact that too is not too spacious unlike the Merc GL rear row which I feel is the only one that betters the Innova last row.

Yep TATA could have made the Safari Last row a bit better but then every vehicle need not match others with the best third row.
For point (a) completely agree that Aria is not SUV looking for my taste and off-roading is not really a priority.

For point (b) , yes when Fortuner 3rd row seats are compared with the Innova it is not very good but it is not bad either. I have not been in cars other than the Fortuner and hence could not comment on those but for medium tips on the Highway (where the ride is not very bouncy) it is reasonably comfortable which is good enough since i cannot afford a Merc GL just for ferrying the extended family :-). Anyways this point is moot since i cannot afford a Fortuner anyways.

XUV 3rd row seats in comparison seemed a bit 'claustrophobic' but can be managed for medium length trips (say some 300 kms to Trichy) and family did manage okay for that trip in a XUV.

The worst which no one likes is the Side facing seats and more so in the Safari. During a company lunch while travelling in a Safari, the Side facing seats caused nausea while travelling to the hotel and almost made me throw up when returning back and this was for a 10 Kms round trip. Travera's side facing seats were better but it is still not very comfortable when compared to front facing seats.

I agree for each person has his/her own requirements but at the end of the day a Butch/Aggressive SUV looking comfortable people mover will sell for the arm junta (for which i belong) irrespective of it is called as SUV/UV/MUV/MAV/LUV/ABC/XYZ..etc.

Storme LX with front facing seats (and preferably a 4*4 optional for bragging rights) would have taken the fight to the Scorpio. I would have bought one. What i don't understand is why Tata does not seem to understand this.
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Old 15th January 2013, 14:43   #371
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A Storme 4X4 with chassis is definitely a better offroader than XUV AWD. A friend of mine who owns both XUV and Safari definitely vouches for safari for offroading. He finds xuv too delicate to take it off road. Even on normal mumbai roads he is changing the bushes every 5000 kms. Squeaking suspensions, problems with brakes and what not.
I think he is a forum member here- Aniket.

Why the fuss about front facing 3rd seat? A SUV in real terms can pack up the mountain terrain bike, or a full camping luggage , huge luggage and what not. You cant do all off those in front facing seats as much as you can do it in Storme.


If at all the 3rd front facing seat is a deal breaker for someone, go to a fabricator and he will design and do the conversion in matter of hours. Many people have done it on their older safaris.
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Old 15th January 2013, 14:52   #372
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amit_mechengg View Post
If at all the 3rd front facing seat is a deal breaker for someone, go to a fabricator and he will design and do the conversion in matter of hours. Many people have done it on their older safaris.
If it is that easy why dont Tata provide that as a factory option?

Is there a possibility of Urban Bronze colour (LX) in the near future?
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Old 15th January 2013, 15:03   #373
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If it is that easy why dont Tata provide that as a factory option?

Is there a possibility of Urban Bronze colour (LX) in the near future?
Its not about just putting the seats that way. A whole process of ARAI regulation, licenses and what not needs to be done if you are changing somethings. Its a whole new project.

Believe me its quite easy to convert those 2 seats. Its no rocket science and not a big deal. If i remember right Pavan Kadam did it in his safari.
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Old 15th January 2013, 16:17   #374
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Originally Posted by em17 View Post
Just saw the storme VX (demo car) outside ABS motors gurgaon. The car had a PEPS system, with a sensor on the driver side door handle and the 'start stop' button instead of the regular key hole. Wonder if its an acter market fit, on a demo car. Or is TML offerring it on all VX's now. Attaching a couple of pics of the same.
This is good. Tata's are looking to load the VX with more features. I am sure a double din in dash is not far away.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Musa View Post
Hi Aceman,

..
I also am in the same boat as you as regards wanting a 3rd row for extended family trips etc and NOT really liking MUV styling. But would I consider the XUV? Well, I was, esp given its 3rd row and all the gadgets but reading all the stuff on the Niggles page of the XUV has honestly gotten me a little spooked, esp since this would be my first SUV. I would give XUV at least another year before they sort out the many issues!

I too of the opinion that if the Tatas want then they can fit a 3rd row seat. They just have to design it! Just put the 2nd row on rails like make space for a 3rd row, even if its a "smaller" 3rd row on like in the Aria (but not like the Endeavour please!) I forget where the T-Bhp thread is but there was someone who had fabricated a pretty good 3rd row seat for the Safari. Luckily, I know a good fabricator friend and that will be my last resort, - IF I finally go for the Storme. My purchase decision is still a year or away and I guess a lot of things will happen by then!

Cheers,
musa
Tata's do have a front facing version of the Storme engineered and ready. Sure its not for India. I think this was showcased in Geneva. From what the pics suggest is these are front facing side folding jump seats. European market requires front facing as per regulation. however what is not sure is why doesn't Tata want to offer this in India. They can even try it as option.
Heres the picture-
Attached Thumbnails
Tata Safari Storme : Official Review-tatasafaristormeginebra2012008.jpg  

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Old 15th January 2013, 16:20   #375
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I used to be of the same viewpoint as Aceman, but am increasingly coming around to the view of Amit.

You make a choice based on what is on offer and not what your percption of what should be on offer is.

That said, I do believe it would not require NASA level engineering to give the middle row two channels to slide on, and give the backrest a reclining option as well while they are at it.

Also the current tumble-fold away system for the middle row against the back of the front seats robs the car of a lot of flat real estate - say as a sleep or play or move-your-house area. Fold flat option ala the Aria or the XUV would be a HUGE plus.

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This is good. Tata's are looking to load the VX with more features. I am sure a double din in dash is not far away.
From what I hear, no sooner than October-November.

Last edited by ebonho : 15th January 2013 at 16:24.
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