TAIger's Tata Trilogy: The Third Tata: Tata Harrier Dark Edition XT+


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Akash1886

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Buddies,

This is the review of a SUV on which I had a crush since the 1st time I saw her at Auto Expo 2018. The review is about a TAIger's tryst with destiny. Overcoming the hurdles thrown by life, have regained the strength to live life and write a new chapter from here on. Yes, earlier at the time of writing the review for my Tata Nexon, I wasn't in the best frame of mind and neither was at peace in my heart. Health concerns and other commitments kept me occupied because of which I couldn't write a proper review of my Nexon and couldn't do justice to the car which till now has served me well. Though I did make an attempt to write but that review wasn't upto my own standard and neither did it go down well with all your expectations. It's fine! Finally, the year 2020 ended and a new year 2021 began. By god's grace, this year I let go of all the hold ups of many pervious years and thankfully got my peace of mind and the peace of my parents mind back. Having moved on, I decided to give back what my mom once gave away. So in February 2021, my mom got the new Tigor XZ+ in same shade of Silver. I was happy since we got back what we truly loved. Tigor was a special car for me and my mom. For me it was the 1st Tata car I ever owned and for my mom it was a nice and comfy upgrade to our reliable and faithful Maruti Esteem. The second time ownership of Tigor 2021 has been good so far though it has just run 60Kms since purchase. Now, talking of the Harrier, This SUV has carved a niche for itself in the market and does enjoy a respectable fan following among enthusiasts. Built on the Land Rover Platform, the Harrier is almost an ideal package one can look forward to in price bracket of 15-20Lac. When we were about to go for the Harrier, for a small period we too considered owning a CITY Ivtec 2021. Now, those of you who know me, will definitely know how much I loved my Ex CITY Ivtec. But, we rejected it for the price. That car has become way to expensive for what it is offering. I straight away headed to Noida Dealer and checked the Harrier Camo Edition & the Safari 2021. On seeing them and checking their price I was confused between the XT trim of both. Later on, took the call and after discussing with Vibhor, booked the Atlas Black Harrier XT+ in March 2021. The waiting period quoted was 45-60 days. I wasn't very keen on an early delivery either. so it was all good for me.

Tata Harrier: The H5X Concept Showcased at the Auto Expo 2018
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Tata Harrier Launch in New Delhi @ 2019 January.

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From the H5X Concept to reality! Harrier's Look and Dimensions impressed me alot. TML did not alter much w.r.t the H5X and the actual Harrier. Love at 1st Sight!!​
 
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Akash1886

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The Big & Obvious Question: Why TATA Again

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Yes, This was the most obvious question in minds of my parents and I guess most of you also would like to know. Why am I not having a brand fatigue? As simple as that, my previous ownership of TATA Tigor was flawless and even the Nexon except for 1 clutch cylinder failure in warranty, the car has served me well till now. Apart from the ownership, the support extended by Tata Dealer here in Noida for all my purchases and the after sales has been at large very nice. Having owned Maruti & Honda in the past, I did not want to again go for the same since at present Maruti Suzuki does not have anything to offer in this price range and secondly Honda has just got the CITY which they have grossly overpriced. Whereas, TATA Motors has evolved and improved by leaps. Looking at their crash test ratings, their designs and their significant improvement w.r.t aftersales I couldn't resist and opted yet again for a TATA. Secondly, there is no harm in being Vocal for Local! Harrier XT+ is an absolute bang for buck offering by TML and coupled with the Dark Edition, the product becomes even more appealing. I always had a liking and wanted own a pure Black car. At the time of 1st Tigor purchase back in 2017, I considered the Aspire because of the Black color but at that point, as we had sold the Esteem, we went in for the Silver color Tigor. That also turned out to be good decision and post the selling of 1st Tigor in 2019, I got to know that the new one has scored 4 stars in NCAP which further strengthened my faith in the TATA brand. While going for the Harrier I was absolutely sure about the color and hence without much fuss opted the Atlas Black. The road presence of the Harrier is definitely mind blowing and it does look a lot like one of the Land Rovers. For those who want to own a big yet value for money SUV, TATA Harrier should definitely be a contender in their list.
 
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Akash1886

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The Dashing & Dynamic Design Language of Harrier
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Now, Honestly I have never owned a full size SUV in my life. So, at the time of buying a big car, I wanted to go in for the full size SUV and feel it. At the launch in 2019, I carefully observed the dimensions and design of it and frankly, the Impact design language had a big impact on me right there and I was very impressed. Comparing this design to the other old Tata Designs, it was a very big leap I must admit and the execution of the design in Harrier has been very neat and classy and it led to a Handsome looking SUV. From front, the design is quite similar to the H5X concept but the difference is made by the projector headlamps. In Black color, the design becomes quite impressive with clean lines and well balanced curves. When a SUV is designed with the base platform being taken from a already popular SUV, it is really important to get the job done right and truly TML has done a master-class job in there. Compact SUV and even full size SUV often are criticized for their looks and many of them do have a rather familiar looking side profile just like the 3 box model. For example, look at the Endeavor or look at the front end of the new Fortuner. Now, having seen the options of SUV on offer in our market, I would say the side profile of Harrier does stand out from the rest and the next closest one would be the 2021 Safari which followed the exact same design from it's concept. It does seem to me that Tata Designers have done a great job in the designing and have superbly executed the concept's design language in the final product as shown in the H5X, Buzzard / Gravitas at Expo in 2018 and 2020. The triangular quarter glass and the sleek chrome garnish running all the way to the front door gives the Harrier a sleek profile and specially in Black color the chrome does not look out of place either. The extended rear glass gives it a longish look and I would say, it lends a more aggressive character to design with that slightly slanting roof line in the rear. Overall, I am very impressed with the clean, simple yet graceful looking side profile. In a SUV, as much as the side profile needs to be well designed same way the rear profile has to be equally well designed. The rear profile is the distinguishing factor between the Harrier and the Safari 2021. So far, in our market, we have got either too swanky or too plain designs as far as the SUV segment is concerned. However, Harrier is a balanced amalgamation of a modern design and overall visual elegance. When I first saw the rear profile of Harrier, I was quite surprised to see such a balanced execution. The rear profile of Harrier gets the all Black treatment as well with no unwanted chrome and bold HARRIER lettering on the boot door. Though TATA has now removed the variant badge from it's line up of new cars. Moving further, Harrier XT+ gets LED tail lights extending upto the boot. The boot door gets a integrated spoiler with a high mounted stop lamp which accentuates the beauty of the car. Complementing the design further, the Harrier Dark Edition gets a all Black treatment to skid plates and bumpers. The rear bumper too gets a sturdy Black Plastic protector in the lower half which often is the point of contact for 2 wheeler wheels and other car bumpers in traffic. This is a good move by Tata I must add. If I have to sum up the external design of Harrier, I would say, its undoubtedly, one of the best looking SUV in the market at present with top notch finesse in execution of it's design. Big [thumbsup][thumbswink] to Tata Motors Design Team.
 
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Important External Design Features of TATA Harrier

The hood design is akin to the true SUV character. The shut lines and creases on the hood are well balanced and enhance the muscular character of this SUV. The 'X' Design element in front makes it ever more handsome.
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The Hexagonal design elements in front grill look elegant and being an all Black edition, this grill further accentuates the front profile of the Harrier. The 'Harrier' Lettering on hood is an add-on!
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Front Air Dam gets the Honey Comb design
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'Dark' Badge on the front Fender
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ORVMs are electrically foldable and are equipped with turn indicators. Their size is quite sufficient and provide ample visibility. However, even with this size they barely nudge in tight spots.
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The rear fog lamp housing in XT+ is covered with a Black Plastic Cover unlike the XZ trim.
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The Spare Wheel is mounted Low and is hidden by the rear plastic protector of the bumper. Even the Exhaust isn't visible unless one bends down
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The rear bumper houses the Fake Exhaust outlets on both sides. The chrome surround is an add on for XT+. Then there are reflectors on both sides and 2 reversing sensors.
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Reversing Camera neatly tucked in next to the number-plate.
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The rear Wiper and Washer is a good feature. Being an SUV at times the itch to go off-road and cover the car with mud is there so this helps in giving a cleaner view. The swipe area is just ok.
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Long Door Handles without any chrome are pleasant to look at. Request sensor is provided to driver's door only.
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Interiors of Harrier Dark Edition.
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Those of you who are owning a Harrier would easily relate to it's In-Cabin layout but for me its my 1st Tata full size SUV. So in my view, the spacious interiors do look good in design and layout. Since I have a Black color car so I did go in for TAN art-leather seat covers which provide an elegant contrast to the all Black theme since Black color seats look a bit odd and dark. As my other cars are Glasgow Grey Nexon and Silver Tigor so in them have chosen Black & Dual tone seat covers. Hence needed something different and refreshing in the Harrier. The TAN seat covers do make the cabin look premium and elegant. As I said, the designing is excellent and with it Tata has taken huge leaps ahead in regards to their car's interiors. The Touchscreen console in XT+ Variant comes in Gloss Black finish with looks very elegant. Coming to the seats layout, I found them to be very comfortable in terms of width & cushioning. The seats in my car had come with Black printed fabric from the OEM so that in itself looks really dark and that is the reason I had to go for seat covers so early. The Panoramic Sun-roof is the master-stroke by TML in XT+ variant and it does give a sense of airiness to the cabin and driving with sunroof shade open (not the sunroof open) is a bliss. I loved driving with the sunroof shade open. Coming back to the seats, the color of the seat cover is such that it wont catch stains way too easily. The Dashboard layout too appears to be at par with a segment above SUV. It feels elegant and lends a plush look to the cabin. Hence, The cabin design overall appears neat and well done to me and in comparison to both my compact cars, features like the adjustable rear headrest, cooled front armrest, bigger touchscreen and big size rear armrest make a good deal of difference for me w.r.t the overall comfort and convenience. .

The seats of Harrier are well cushioned and give good back-support and unlike Tigor & Nexon, it's a proper 5 seater SUV with good shoulder room and head room. I am 6'1in and my dad also is 6'2in and both of us have 2 main criteria i.e rear leg space and headroom. As I and Vibhor had sat in the display model at the showroom, I could well feel the good amount of rear seating space and headroom Harrier has offered. My dad too had sat in the back seat recently and compared the space with the Nexon, he mentioned the following observations:

1) Rear Seats for tall people like my dad is comfortable in terms of back-support and under-thigh support and legroom. Headroom is also very nice.

2) Ingress and Egress are OK for him but for mom it is bit difficult as she has knee issues. A 70+ year old man's view on this is worth considering. Coming from a relatively low seating Nexon & Tigor, he said, its better than both but still told me to consider side steps for mom to make it much better for her.

3) If front seat is pushed back, the knee-room and legroom are still available in ample for the Tall guys at rear.

4) Front seats of XT+ are equipped with conventional lever mechanism to move back & front

Now when I sat in the car during today morning's drive and even otherwise, I felt the front seats to be well cushioned and offer good under-thigh support. Even though I don't need the height adjustment in driver seat, yet the XT+ version comes equipped with it. My chauffeur is also around 5'9 and with a medium built, he too felt that the seats are really comfortable and offer good legroom and headroom even more so when the front passenger seat is pushed ahead. From the front the ingress and egress is excellent for me and the rear ingress and egress needs no effort either for me. So, After a gap of almost 3+ years, I can safely say that, the kind of seating comfort I got in my CITY IVtec, the same or rather even better seating comfort is there in the Harrier.
 
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Akash1886

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Important Interior Aspect of Harrier
The steering wheel comes with mounted controls for Audio, Bluetooth, Telephony & Cruise Control. The steering wheel gets dual tone finish with brushed Silver color
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The Auto AC Console in front finished in Gloss Black
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ICE Console finished in Gloss Black. The drive mode buttons are also placed there alongwith the hazard light and fog lamp switch below the front AC vents and above the AC vents are the buttons for ICE.

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Among the Attractive Features, The Big Panoramic Sunroof. The Controls for the Sunroof are placed on the front Roof Lamp Console.
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Born with the Land Rover Pedigree! Sill Plates on front door added from dealer
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Good Driving View. The visibility of the Hood is ample from the driver's seat. It helps a lot in traffic for maintaining a safe distance.
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Simple Dual Dial Speedo console with a M.I.D in center showing Time,
DTE, Temp, DEF, Insta FE, Total Kms Run et al
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USB and Aux Provision in the front
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Wipers and Light Switches are of good quality plastic
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Switch on driver side to adjust both ORVMs from inside
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MICs provided on the front roof lamp console
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Cup Holders in between front seats
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Front & Rear Door Pads are made of good quality plastic with no rough edges. The inner door grip too feels sturdy. The Bottle Holders in them have sufficient space but I don't like the fabric used in the pads.
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The inner door latch design is good and feels premium but the power window switch panel is really of sub standard quality for a premium SUV
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Solar Sensor as usual
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Manually Adjustable IRVM has decent viewing space.
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The AC vent design at the front corners looks good and they finished with brushed Silver surround
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Illuminated Glove Box with 2 level storage
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Front & Rear inner grab rails. The rear ones have reading lamps near them and a coat hook as well
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Sun Visors do not have any vanity mirror or provision of light
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The quality of Padding material used on the dashboard feels premium. Thankfully TML unlike many other has not cut corners. It helps in reducing glare on windscreen.
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Textured Silver finish below the dashboard lends a elegant contrast to the cabin.
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Brushed Silver surround in the gear lever console
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As there is no physical drive mode dial in XT+ it makes way for yet another stowage space in front. It is again done up in gloss black finish.
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Front Armrest is a comforting feature for me. Really miss this in Tigor & Nexon. It is air cooled and includes 12v charging point and 5v usb point
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Two tone rear door inner grip. The design is also quite good.
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Almost flat transmission hump in the rear floor. This further adds foot space and comfort to the middle passenger seating in the rear
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Big rear window adds to the roominess of the cabin. One doesn't feel claustrophobic.
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Pillar mounted rear AC Vents

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Stowage space behind front armrest. Below it are another pair of 5v usb sockets for the passengers but they are placed very low and one may need to use hand to find them.
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Neatly fixed Hood Opening latch at driver's side.
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Vents provided above the front corner AC vents to ensure no fogging on windows happen from inside. It comes in handy during winters and rainy season
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In Car Entertainment


Touchscreen unit provided in XT+ Gets Android Auto & Apple Car Play among other regular features. The display is good and doesn't blur in sunlight.
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The touchscreen doubles up as reverse parking screen with dynamic guidelines and it gets a zoom feature too.
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The Audio setup provided to XT+ is 4 speakers and 4 tweeters. The Sound Quality is awesome though. At level 6 volume, the music and beats sounds superb.
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Boot Space in Harrier

Harrier gets a spacious boot of 425L with a big parcel tray too. The boot door is equipped with a grab rail since it's too heavy and also gets hydraulic struts. Please note the boot opening button provided in the key-ring does not work and the boot needs to be opened from the button placed under the boot door garnish. There is proper placement for the tool kit in it as well. The DEF (diesel exhaust fluid) tank is also located inside the boot on right corner. Another comforting feature of the boot is that the loading lip is not too high so no one needs to put in lot of effort while loading and unloading the luggage. Just as a protection from scratches of luggage on the car and upon the insistence of the accessory guy at the Showroom, I added a chrome garnish at the boot lip.
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The Location of DEF Tank in Boot
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Sturdy Plastic Used on the Loading Lip. It also houses the cover that has the provision of loosening the spare wheel at right corner.

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Initial Impression of the Engine Performance and Drive Behavior in Harrier

Friends, as I write about this aspect of the Harrier, I have driven in CITY only just a shade above 200 Kms since purchase. I haven't used the Cruise Control either so far.
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The Harrier gets a BS-6 compliant 2.0L Kryotec diesel engine putting out 170 PS power & 350 Nm Torque. It's a 1,956 cc, 4-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine. Competing against the likes of XUV 5OO, I must say, the Harrier’s power and torque figures are commendable. Having an unladen kerb weight of 1693 Kg and a total weight of 2168 kgs (for XT+) it still is quite agile in the drive all thanks to the 350Nm Torque. The diesel engine in XT+ gets the regular driving modes i.e City (default), Eco and Sport but it is not equipped with audible alerts which sound when the drive mode is changed. Further, there is no terrain response system in the XT+ either. As I opted for the Manual Transmission so the Harrier gets a C635 unit having 6 forward & 1 Reverse gear, However, do note, unlike the conventional reverse gears, this one has a forward slotting reverse gear which gets engaged by gently pressing the button below the gear lever with clutch. Talking further of the clutch, it has a long travel range too but isn't as heavy in my view, Upon cranking the engine with the push button, I noted a slight shakiness which I guess is a characteristic of most of the diesel SUVs and at idling too there are mild vibrations from the steering.

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Press the accelerator and move, the engine doesn't disappoint at all and is very eager to be driven[:D] Moving ahead, The 2.0L engine has a brilliant low end which adds to overall driving pleasure. Apart from a minor lag at around 1300-1400 rpm there isn't anything much to complain about. But, yes the moment the revvs go low, there is a risk of engine stall. I have faced this many times since purchase. Mostly it happened while turning when one has to slow down. The MID shows to 'Use 1st gear at a speed of 10 km/h' and it gets tricky if you try to move at a low speed in 2nd gear. However, Open stretches are a bliss to drive on with this engine as it has abundant mid range. The engine begins to get into the element the moment 1800 rpm is passed and with the torque on tap. It is indeed a great experience to drive it. Yesterday I took it to Akshardham flyover and it was in true sense an effortless drive. I revved it upto 3000 and it happily performed. Though I am not that "heavy driver" of sorts but just to check the performance at 100 km/h, I accelerated and the moment it went over 80 Km/h that Yellow speed warning light lit up which I found to be a bit irritating. Moving on to another important aspect, The NVH levels. If you ask me, Harrier isn't as bad in the NVH. During idling and drives, to me the engine sound appeared well controlled. Even on acceleration, the engine noise doesn't penetrate much inside the cabin thanks to the good amount of insulations and sound absorbing material provided inside the hood and the engine bay.

Initial Impression of the Ride and Handling Behavior of Harrier
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Gear Shift Pattern
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The A,B & C Pedals but no Dead Pedal

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The goodness of the engine is put down by the lukewarm ride quality of the Harrier. Reason to a large extent are the Apollo 17". I would not recommend Apollo & Good Year Tyre(s) to anyone. The undulations of the road and the road noise in Apollo are a big sore point in the ride of this car. At PDI itself I was not happy with the Apollo Tyres being provided. My Tigor has Bridgestone and mind you they darn good w.r.t the ride quality. Going further, the gear shifts are bit confused, especially the 1st and 2nd gears. I have been experiencing this since delivery day. This is one thing with which I am not very pleased with Tata and I believe there is still a lot of scope to make the gear shifts better and more smooth. However, the gear throws aren't as long though.

In my view the Harrier's ride quality is very evolved but still a bit on the firmer side. Harrier is equipped with an independent wishbone McPherson strut front suspension with coil springs and the rear one is a semi-independent twist blade with a panhard rod and coil spring. Within city speeds, it is good enough and is comfortable for all to sit and the driver to drive. There isn't much for me to complain on this front. However, the potholes and uneven road surface is pretty pronounced inside the cabin and is felt by the rear passengers. The rear suspension should have been bit more well tuned. But still, overall the ride isn't bouncy and the 235 section Tyre(s) offer satisfactory grip. Talking of the body roll, Body roll is very much present but not really pronounced. It at best can be termed as acceptable. Moving on to the steering, as I have driven within city, so the feedback has been alright so far as the steering doesn't feel too light and neither feels heavy. It is almost perfect for the city drives. Speaking of the ground clearance, Harrier has 205 mm of ground clearance and so far within city I did not scrape the car anywhere. Another significant point I would like to add, being a big SUV with 5.8m turning radius, it takes fair amount of effort to maneuver at tight spots. Honestly, the Harrier is way too big an SUV for it's segment and requires lot of precision and confidence in driver to drive it within the city.

Further more, Harrier gets ABS & EBD as standard on all variants. It gets disc brakes at the front and drums at the rear. As far as braking is concerned, Harrier's braking capability is good and so far I have no complaints as within this short span, there have been couple of close calls with bikers and 2 lady drivers but what truly impressed me in these situations was that even in emergency braking it stopped well in time. Another thing I noticed is that while braking there is fair amount of nose dive which maybe will improve as I drive it for long. So, all in all, these have been my initial observations for the Harrier. I look forward to taking it to Highways and observe the steering and cruise control behavior as well. Will revert on them as I drive.
 
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Interior and Exterior Lightings



ORVMs with integrated Turn Indicators
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The DRLs function as indicators too. The White Illumination looks superb during night
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Headlamps are placed below DRLs. Headlamps in XT+ are a combo of Halogen Bulb for High beam and Projector for Low Beam. The on road illumination is quite good and bright.
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Halogen Fog Lamps
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All Front Lights Illuminated
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High Mounted Stop Lamp
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Tail Lights are full LED
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Indicators are Halogen
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Boot Lamp with Yellow Illumination
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White Illumination for the rear Number Plate
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Interior Lights
Front Roof Lamp with twin bulbs & white illumination. It also has a bulb in the center that functions on door opening and switching off the engine
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Reading lamps provided with white illumination at the top of rear door roof grip
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Doors are equipped with Red Lamps which illuminate on opening the door. They are more of a safety feature which help the on-coming vehicle to know of your vehicle's presence in the dark.
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