Test Drove Storme today, my inputs:
I have owned a 2.0 TCIC and 3.0L DICOR, also have driven a 2.2 vtt so obviously will be comparing them.
First, a little about what I drove. It was a VX Explorer edition 4x2 vehicle. Color : Pearl White.
Exterior's are subjective I did'nt like the squarish front but love the boxy rear! The side cladding looks like bad aftermarket fit, the basic attractions of Safari are gone, its curvy aka roundy back with a lovely angry front, and a heavy side profile with overhanging rear. This all are absent in Storme, what's the point of makeover then? They should have designed an all new exterior.
Interiors : Most appreciated change in the Storme, the current Safari's interior's looks outdated. What I like about Storme's interior is they give a car like feel rather than a truck like feel in the DICOR. The NVH are well controlled and once I failed to hear if the engine was running, and when i saw at speedo it was showing 3K rpm @2nd gear. I am not DEAF by anyway!
AC: Excellent, when I sat in the car AC was already running for 15 mins and I was chilled to bones in no time. The AC vents are a big welcome move. The center AC vents are useless in current Safari.
The positioning of cup holders went above my head, what did Tata think? They could have done it like in the current Safari. It's way better.
Music system is okay (it was a touchscreen ver.) , the bass was absent whatever song I heard to. My Car-PC sounds way better.
Most of the people complained about the Steering height but I did'nt faced any issue and there was fair bit of distance even after the seat height was at maximum. The overall packaging & quality of the interiors are above average but still a long way to go. The bitter thing although is that the VX model has beige color all over the interiors, I prefer blackened top, as beige gets dirtier too quickly in the Indian conditions. The comfort of front seats are the same
as in DICOR. But the real change is in the middle row, where the SOFA seat has improved. The cushioning was better and I immediately felt the difference between the DICOR and Storme's seat. The back was where I avoided to seat for obvious reasons, its too cramped, crampier than the DICOR!
Suspension: I drove the Storme over serious potholes at 30-40 kmph and it made us play hip hop which any car will do if taken at those speeds. What was amazing then? It never gave a feeling of unsettling at those speeds. The small craters are easily eaten away. Suspension is tuned for being softier but I could'nt notice a single difference when going over potholes between my DICOR and Storme. The real difference is in handling, it inspires confidence and I could switch lanes (rapidly) happily above 90 Kmph to which I don't usually dare to do in my DICOR.
Engine: The NVH levels have improved over 2.2vtt. It is the best tuned engine on Safari. It asks for going harder, and I gave it what it wanted. It is so well tuned that I forgot if it was the same 2.2vtt motor that does the duty on old Dicor.
Gearbox: Best on the Safari as till now, the gear shifting is close to effortless and so smooth. The gear throws are still longer. But, the gear ratios are still Pathetic to say. Drive a Innova and you will know how good and well spaced are gear-ratios in that MUV. Storme still struggles to pick-up from 50 Kmph @5th gear, it takes its own sweet time.
Braking: Excellent! If it was'nt ABS
I would have locked-up the wheels! That's how effective braking power they generate.
Overall, Storme looks like a job done in hurry! What were the Tata engineers testing for so long? The handling? The engine is the same just tuned differently. Why did'nt they went with a all new design, they have a new chassis BTW
So, if anybody asks me to buy a Storme 4x4 for 16L, I will downrightly reject that offer. It does'nt seems tobe VFM
for that price. For me, I will prefer TCIC for its reliability < 3.0L DICOR for its Torque and its lovely engine sound over Storme.