I have been dreaming about moving to a SUV since last 1 year. Took test drive of almost all the SUVs in 10-17L bracket. The last one to drive was Storme, the ride handling, suspension and the road presence completely got myself hooked to 'THE BEAST'. There was no turning back since I took the test drive.
All my immediate family & friends , except the current safari dicor owners were asking me 'Why Tata'? I didnt realize the depth of that question at that point, which is dawning upon me now 2 months post the ownership.
(more on the TASS & TML service experience below!)
After negotiating hard with the dealer (KHT) and postponing my purchase decision a few times from June, finally bit the bullet on late August. The catalyst being a handsome discount & exchange bonus along with a pretty good price for my faithful 1.3 L Getz.
I booked a EX urban bronze storme and luckily there was a JUly make readily available with the dealer. Once my loan came through, did the PDI (THx to the TAI
checklist) and okayed the vehicle. In all it took barely 10 days since paying the booking amount to lay my hand on the beast. Took the delivery on Sept 1st week with accessories of reverse sensor (complimentory), Explorer edition Nudge guard, Door Visors & Chrome garnishes & Yoko Geolander 255 Tyre upgrade on day-1.
This is my 8 th week of ownership and have already clocked 7000kms in the odo with close to 5 trips to Kerala. The experience so far: +ves
- Ride Quality in the highways is heavenly
- Soaks the craters and bumps effortlessly
- Tireless Driving without breaks for upto 400+kms
- Amazing road presence
- No-nonsense breaking - once had to do a hard breaking near a divider in the highway and vehicle behaved splendidly under the circumstance.
- Very minimal body-roll even while taking curves
- Transparent Turbo kicking-in post 2000 rpm -sometimes wonder if am driving a luxury sedan with its effortless overtaking
- Out of the world rear-seat comfort (both my mom & wife vouches for it)
- A boot that can put to shame a mini packers n movers (personally experienced during my last trip back from kerala)
- Amazing A/C - I can keep my beverages chilled with both the AC on, if need be
- The bluetooth and handsfree system that allows me to take calls while driving.
Now to the not so +ve
experiences. (well there is a -ve section too)
- Rattling /Squeeking noises all around - be it from the Seat Belts, Window panes, Rear doors, clutch springs
- Suspensions creaking noise , esp the front right when vehicle moves sideways (still fighting with TML/TASS for proper solution)
- A/C blower inefficient - corrected during my first service
- Rear Door rattling which the TASS is still not able to solve
- Plain looking dash with a below average speakers. Mind you Headunit is a great one (Alpine with two pre-outs)
Well now lets come to what frustrates me the real -ves
. Even with such an impeccable product , why is it struggling in garnering nos. some of my below points might answer this:
- The dealer KHT doesnt seem to have any professionalism - found on the 2nd day of ownership that in my left rear bumper there are some scratch marks & re-painting brush marks (not there during my PDI)!!! Upon confronting the sales team though initially they didnt acknowledge after escalating to TML they agreed to replace the bumper ( a few weeks later). Potential buyers please be careful while interacting with this dealer.
- Dealer competence in servicing - even after giving it for FOURTH time all my rattling issues (mentioned above) & suspension squeeking noise continues. Now I am planning to switch the dealership to Concorde.
- The lack of accountability from this dealership is worrying. Unless you call some TML executives, things sometimes doesnt move.
The positive being that TML has been supportive in this regard and a few of the dealer service team also has gone out of the way to help solve. However, doesnt help your cause in the end if these kinda niggles persist. These niggles sometimes take the overall 'WOW' factor of an otherwise splendid ownership experience so far. Nonetheless, didnt buy Storme expecting a customer focussed treatment from TASS either. So in a way I had expected this
Lastly, still am completely in love with my beast. This is the most under achieved SUV we have in the market. Had it been a better dealer service with a little thoughts on the dash & an aggressive pricing Storme would have bought the old Safari glory days back to Tata. Better late than never- wishing for Tata Motors to listen.