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Old 20th August 2006, 15:51   #1
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Default Tata Crew Cab - Testdrive report

Test drive on the "new" Four-wheel drive crew cab from Tata:
The vehicle: Looks - Tata mobile crew cab; but it isn't a Tata mobile 207.
It's their new "adventure" model crew cab in the "commercial motor vehicle" segment (they have an independent "car" segment of which Tata Safari is included).
The cost: Upwards of 8 lakhs
The interiors: Very plastic Tata mobile-like. But with A/c.
Plus points: Four wheel drive engaging "knob" with for 2-wheel, 4-wheel low and 4-wheel high.
The test zone:
High rainfall evergreen forest with dirt track upto 30 degree elevation on stretch from MSL to 600 m above MSL over 12 km length.
Time taken: Roughly 3 hours to and fro.
Comparison: This road had been negotiated with a Mahindra Bolero 4WD so that was a standard on which present drive is compared.
The drive:
The vehicle is heavy. In fact feels very heavy. But the power steering helps. It does not have the starting surge, the thrust, like the Bolero. It simply purrs on. The steering radius is huge. At hairpin bends, I had to reverse unlike the Bolero which took the turns smoothly with space to spare. The sales ex who was with me said the radius is actually small, but this particular piece had some problem.
The tyres are tubeless. In one particluar spot, the right rear tyre got sunk in a trench. The 4 wheel high gear didn't help. We had to put a lot of rocks in the pit to finally get it out. Unlike the Bolero, which we found could lift itself out with just the front two tyres in high gear.
The wipers are very delicate. We got caught up in some climbers (vines) and the right wiper conked out. Some time later the left wiper followed suit.
The a/c is neat. But during the climb we had to put it off as it would take off the power even when in high gear.
The a/c knobs were rudimentary Maruti 800 - like. The front a/c vents like the plastic Tata mobile vents. Anybody paying over 8 lakhs would expect something better. Maybe with wood finish.
Overall assesment: The power is something of a let down especially after seing their ad comparing the Safari with a roller-coaster. You press the accelerator and leave the clutch and the vehicle just moans on. The interiors are very poor. The vehicle is too bulky. Tubeless tyres are okay for the city, not for the jungle. Would opt for a Bolero anyday.
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Old 20th August 2006, 17:37   #2
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Vince that's one hell of a test drive man. Did the dealer burst into tears when you brought the car back in that shape?
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Old 22nd August 2006, 17:48   #3
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Vinces
Thats neat dude. One hell of a test drive. Did you test drive the Bolero too or you own one.
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Old 25th August 2006, 19:11   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiranpashtakar
Vinces
Thats neat dude. One hell of a test drive. Did you test drive the Bolero too or you own one.
The Bolero's the office vehicle which I get to ride once in a while, while I drive a Mahindra 4WD pickup regularly in the forest.
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Old 25th August 2006, 19:28   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinces
At hairpin bends, I had to reverse unlike the Bolero which took the turns smoothly with space to spare. The sales ex who was with me said the radius is actually small, but this particular piece had some problem.
I don't think the salesman has a clue. In my drive from Pune to Mahableshwar and back (some 400km of total driving), theTL4x4 had the worst turning radius of any car i'd ever driven. In Mahableshwar, turning into the back roads always meant backing up and then completing the turn. Not even the Endeavour feels so bad.

As for the car itself, it isn't all that bad but the price currently is unjustified. There is a DICOR variant in the wings with great interiors and even better looks. Maybe giving it a second chance to prove itself makes sense.

Revv
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Old 28th August 2006, 17:50   #6
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Well written dude, and much well driven there ! I wonder wat must have been going on in the salesman head while u were test driving !
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Old 28th August 2006, 20:20   #7
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hay, that really nice review. its really wouderful to have such a detailed information, you have really written it very neatly dude..
nice one
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Old 29th August 2006, 00:12   #8
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hey,

that was a great review,bolero surely is the clear winner,but tatas are aways improving ,so we should wait for improved versions soon......
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Old 8th September 2006, 14:14   #9
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i have used the bolero quite extensively & i can second vinces in all that he says, except for one point. the turning radius of the bolero isn't great. if tata's is worse than that, then it is not even worth considering.
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Old 21st September 2006, 08:06   #10
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[SIZE=2]I test drove one of these things on the day of their official launch in Bangalore and I found the power to grossly inadequate for such a huge vehicle weighing in at almost 2 tons. Compared to the 2 previous 207's I owned this one was no fun to drive at all.[/SIZE]
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Old 21st September 2006, 21:46   #11
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Red face

They are launching the vehicle in Goa now; and they want me to be there . However, in the test report, I had not been very liberal with adjectives, so it left me wondering why they are taking the trouble to invite me; until a friend pricked the bubble by suggesting that they call the worst critic on stage as a guest of honour so that he has no option but to praise the vehicle!
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Old 25th September 2006, 16:29   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinces
. The sales ex who was with me said the radius is actually small, but this particular piece had some problem.

The wipers are very delicate. We got caught up in some climbers (vines) and the right wiper conked out. Some time later the left wiper followed suit.
The a/c is neat. But during the climb we had to put it off as it would take off the power even when in high gear.
The a/c knobs were rudimentary Maruti 800 - like. The front a/c vents like the plastic Tata mobile vents. Anybody paying over 8 lakhs would expect something better.
O.
Comon are'nt you supposed to have your best vehicle when you want to show off your product to a prospective customer.

Think of it as this way -- For a arranged marraige I dont think the girls parent would say " Aaj thoda beti ke dimak me problem hai ! On most other days she is OK , beautifull, gorgeous , sexy ,etc..

I had gone to check the same vehicle a month back and as I switched on the A/c the button fell off?? ,but is'nt this supposed to be a new vehicle?

So after the test drive ( absolutely nothing to talk or write about -its ****) I drove the safari .

The rear door was not fitting into place resulting in a lot of noise & the excuse was that its happened while bringing the car from the godown ?--are safari buyers supposed to move around with a bucketfull of loctite??

I think Tata thinks that all their customers are cabbies or maybe anybody who has heard about the word "QUALITY " is not allowed to buy their cars.

maybe its time that tata started to seriously about quality and stop tom tomin their BIG small car which only sells because its diesel and nothing else.
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Old 25th September 2006, 17:04   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinces
However, in the test report, I had not been very liberal with adjectives, so it left me wondering why they are taking the trouble to invite me; until a friend pricked the bubble by suggesting that they call the worst critic on stage as a guest of honour so that he has no option but to praise the vehicle! [IMG]images/icons/icon11.gif[/IMG]
Really?? Why would TATA want to invite you to the launch. I think I agree with your friend though, they might invite you to speak & you out of courtersy are going to have to praise the vehicle!!

But seriously after reading all this & abhijit's comments it's quite sad that TATA still hasn't realised that to sell their products would need something more then just a diesel engine. To compete with the latest products they have to improve on many fronts including Quality, Reliability, Development, Interiors, Engines & After Sales Support.

I'm excitedly waiting to see what happens when the Santro/Getz CRDI & Swift Diesel get launched. I think the sales of the Indica in the private sector are going to tank badly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by abhijit 2284
Comon are'nt you supposed to have your best vehicle when you want to show off your product to a prospective customer.

Think of it as this way -- For a arranged marraige I dont think the girls parent would say " Aaj thoda beti ke dimak me problem hai ! On most other days she is OK , beautifull, gorgeous , sexy ,etc..
HAHAHAHAHA ROFLMAO
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Old 26th September 2006, 13:54   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iraghava
need something more then just a diesel engine. --EXACTLY my point.

I think the sales of the Indica in the private sector are going to tank badly.--

HAHAHAHAHA ROFLMAO
As a person who appreciates the Indica and having nearly bought one thrice I really think this is bound to happen . MUL only has to be realistic with their pricing and they have a confirmed winner.
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Old 1st October 2006, 10:58   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhijit 2284
I had gone to check the same vehicle a month back and as I switched on the A/c the button fell off?? ,but is'nt this supposed to be a new vehicle?
.
Now that you have mentioned that, I remember that this one did not have the knobs for the AC button and the fan either!!!
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