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Old 27th August 2010, 11:37   #1
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Default Buying a Safari - some questions

Dear all.,

My name is Suresh, and I live in Hosur, Tamilnadu with family (wife, toddler son).
I work at Whitefield, and so currently commuting to work from home every weekday - 90kms total both ways. Currently it is my 2005 Zen that is faithfully serving me for this purpose.

But trusty as the zen might be - in 6 years and 86000 kms we haven't had any problem whatsoever, never stranded, and always she got us home safe - she shows her age, a few rattles here and there, but still does run solid and I actually have no pressing reason to replace her.
However, the safari has been in my mind for last 6 months or so and I'm contemplating buying the 2010 Safari EX model.
(We were in US for 2 years 2008-2010 May, and I had a Land Rover Discovery
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/4x4-ve...sd-96-usa.html (Land Rover Discovery SD '96 - USA)
and resolved at that time to get a Safari when I get back to India)

I plan to keep the zen after the purchase of Safari till I completely transition into it and then plan to sell the Zen as my wife doesn't drive and two cars just for me is a overkill.

Here are my few questions -

1. Other day checked out the Tata dealer at Hosur - True Sai Works.. They only had BSIII variants on display, and didn't even have pricelist for BSIV. Need to call up again and find out if BSIV is indeed available from them. But, is it ok to get BS III, will I miss any good feature in BSIV variants? Registration is not a problem as I would be registering in Hosur.

2. The Hosur dealer may not have many safaris moving out through them as the Bangalore dealers, say KHT or Concorde.. so they might be stocking some several month old manufactured ones - should I consider buying from Bangalore dealers and registering in Hosur? Is there any extra cost involved in this? Is there a entry tax if I buy from KA and drive into TN for registering?

3. Is there a way to find out the month of manufacture of a Safari by any means at the dealer?

4. I am torn between LX or EX - The only real stuff that interest me in EX are the body coloured side cladding (must for me) and the audio system (I am not a die hard music fan, but want to have a decent audio for tamil songs - (Ilayaraja) and english country songs). If I go for LX, what is the rough cost of installing a good audio head unit and speakers?
I have read in other threads not to opt for painting the side cladding of LX, so I wont do that.

I haven't checked what discounts I would get from either KHT/Concorde, or True Sai Works, so ultimate I will take that also into consideration before deciding on dealer.

My mind is telling me to be cost conscious and get a punto or a good diesel hatch to do the 90km commute economically, but my heart is pulling strongly towards safari. Considering we have another baby on the way, and would have a Labrador soon, I think we need a big car and not a hatch.
By spirit I am a driver, and been in love with the open highways since school days.
We do several Hosur - Kanyakumari trips each year, I do many visits to my friend's campsite in Nagarahole National Park, once in a while drive to Munnar/Kodai, and I have plans to do cross country with the safari - so it has to be the safari. :-)

Experts here please throw in your thoughts....

Thank you,
Hosur, Tamilnadu
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Old 27th August 2010, 13:17   #2
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Ideally you should be buying a big hatchback for your daily commute. But yes driving a Safari is a different experience.

I would suggest you get the EX if the budget permits. There are lot of little features in the EX that you would appreciate some months down in the ownership. Cross country driving in Safari is no problem at all, it is very comfortable and spacious, gives a commanding view of the road and the engine has decent pep too. Although if you just want to compare engines, the Scorpio mHawk is much better.

Installing a decent music system should set you back by Rs 15,000 - 20,000 depending on the brands. Painting the claddings should cost another Rs 10,000. There's nothing wrong in painting the claddings. The only thing is that the paint will scrape off if you hit something which can cause some heartache. My 3.0 EX didn't come with painted claddings, I had them painted at the dealer, quite happy with it.

Get a BSIV. For date of manufacture, check for the VIN no, and there are plenty of people here who can decode it and tell you the date of manufacture. If you search on the forum, you'll find a thread dedicated to this.

If I were you, I'd go for the EX and would even try and extend to get the 4x4. But I must also tell you this since you've owned a Zen. The Zen is a very reliable car, it's relatively quick and easy to drive. With the Safari, you'll have to get used to the handling and braking. The top-heavy nature means you have to slow down more during turns and you can't chuck it into corners like you would with a Zen.

Also, Tata quality is not the best. There are little niggles which can be irritating. Get the extended warranty without fail. I don't know if they still offer the 4 year bumper to bumper warranty. But if they do take it, it is well worth it. You have to understand parts won't be as cheap as your Zen. For example a clutch can cost up to Rs 15,000.

If you do buy the vehicle, ensure you go to the yard and select the vehicle to be alloted to you. Check the vehicle with a fine tooth comb, there is a PDI check list thread on the forum, go through that.

If you are okay with all this, go ahead and get the Safari, you'll be happy. But if you are even slightly apprehensive, I'd suggest take a second look at the hatches in the market.

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Old 27th August 2010, 13:44   #4
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Note from mod: Please look at existing threads. Your queries have been answered multiple times. For any new queries you can post in existing threads
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