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2020 Tata Harrier Automatic and Manual First Drive Review

Believe Tata Harrier, and the first thing that comes to your mind is that a true-blue SUV with astounding road presence. More so in its own sexy all-black apparel termed’Black-Edition’ which only flaunts its stunning curves. Come 2020, and the Tata Harrier is not only BS6 compliant with approximately 30bhp more, it also boasts of an automatic version with more gear. However, before we dig deeper, let’s get the appearances from the way.

This bit then flows on to a rather rugged profile; finish with a cladded lower segment with severe clearance through those new diamond cut alloys.

It doesn’t end there. A blacked-out roof can be seen easily blending the roof into the tail portion with the signature’arrow’ tail lamps that game snazzy LED internals. These slender tail lamps are quite the visual treat as they flow easily on to ends thanks to some foxy glossy-black trim.

How’s the Tata Harrier Interior?

So, the eye-catching design layout continues. Undoubtedly, the Harrier’s cottage is a nice spot to maintain. There’s a nice flowing design, from the doorway pads on to the layered dash.

Tata has done a good job by giving a premium feel by minding a few oak-wood coloured trim all across together with the oak-wood trimming and fitting oak-brown leather upholstery. However, the party piece needs to be the trendy floating-island base that retains the touchscreen infotainment system, air-con vents and switches to the car’s functions.

Harrier Car Review
Harrier Car Review

In terms of stowage, there is enough space in the cubby spaces before this lever, the cup-holders and centre armrest behind it, and more in the deep doorway pads and glove-box. Now overall, although grade rates have improved over the previous car, we nevertheless find it a color below section competitions like the Jeep Compass.

But what’s nice about the Harrier is the fact that it is a spacious SUV. There’s ample legroom, shoulder-room and headroom both in front and rear. Even the chairs at the ends are big and comfortable, with a great deal of support making them good for extended journeys.

However, we believed that the raked window-line does decrease visibility to the rear occupants. In terms of the 425-litre boot, there is enough space for three medium-sized suitcases and some soft bags. And if that’s not enough, simply reverse the 60:40 bench over to unveil up to a total of 810-litres, enough for most requirements.

You also get Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility with the audio system which boasts of two JBL speakers and an amplifier. And finally, safety is cared for by the ESP (all variants), six airbags, hill descent control, electronic traction and stability control, hill hold, corner equilibrium control, off road ABS and the back parking sensors using a camera, to name a few.

How Does the Engine Perform?

With the updated BS6 Kryotec 2.0-litre turbocharged diesel, output has risen from 140bhp into 168bhp, but the torque stays identical at 350Nm. Likewise, the new Harrier also receives a six-speed automatic variant to follow with its six-speed manual transmission variant. Upon cranking this engine, those familiar with the older Harrier will immediately appreciate the overall fall in NVH.

Keen on knowing how this automatic felt to drive, I slotted the shifter to’D’ and released the brakes. The Harrier crept ahead progressively, after which, as I implemented some throttle, it nudged ahead smoothly and purposefully. I immediately appreciated this six-speed automated torque convertor unit did a good job of setting the controller input to extend a linear power delivery.

And, as soon as one strikes 1500rpm, there’s a noticeable spike in reaction, post which it pulls cleanly to the 4600rpm redline. In fact, this engine just gets vocal if you keep the pedal pinned to the ground beyond 3500rpm. As for the shifts, they’re actioned seamlessly, and really facilitates driving this automatic all-day-long without breaking a sweat.

And since we are talking convenience, there’s no need for continuous braking or slotting into a lower gear when going downhill since it retains a favorable power to prevent freewheeling (coasting). What’s more, we admired the stress-free temperament of the motor once we glanced in the rev-clock to view it operating under 2000rpm at over 100kmph. Moving forward, slotting into Tiptronic mode (guide ) automatically summons the’Sport’ mode to give you quick responses.

All you have to do today is feather the controller for the Harrier to ride the torque curve, and cover ground like an aerial battle vehicle. And, in the event that you ever miss upshifting yourself, the system will automatically upshift for you at roughly 3600rpm to save the gearbox. But having said that,’City’ mode is much more than what you are ever going to want, as it provides enough response for many driving conditions. And, for those who are low on fuel or so are anal about fuel efficiency,’ Eco’ using its relaxed response, does the occupation; 14.63kmpl to be exact.

Let us discuss the manual version now. Together with the 30-odd extra horses, there’s no need for downshifting to get greater performance from this motor. You just need to hover around the 1500rpm mark to ensure a simple tap on the accelerator pedal will get you access to the meaty section of the power group; like for a quick overtake. So much so, that we never felt the need for more out of this engine.

Additionally, even when you are not driving in the best rev-range, it will not bog down or something. The flexibility of this powertrain permits you to lug along in the exact same gear. Which brings us into a welcome change.

Now, even though the NVH is much better contained than before, we might feel some buzz creep throughout the pedals and gear shifter once the engine revved beyond 3400rpm or so. As is true for the automatic, the manual also receives the drive manners which lend the same behavior we discussed previously. And, when the going gets rough, the ESP terrain modes like’Normal” Rough’ and’Wet’ come handy also.

As for the steering, the two-and-a-half turns from the lock-to-lock result in a good response in many driving situations. Moreover, being mild with great progression around the middle makes maneuvering the Harrier that little simpler.

We have to admit this monocoque with Land Rover underpinnings gives it clean handling manners with minimal roll. Concerning ride, the powerful suspension setup feels indestructible even once you plow through our road hurdles. Sure, the ride is taut at lower rates, but since you venture into three-digit types, the Harrier only decimates everything our Indian roads throw at it.

Conclusion:

In the absence of an automatic edition, Tata Motors was simply unable to tap into the Harrier’s complete potential. But that’s going to change, and undoubtedly for the better due to the ease of forcing provided from the automatic. All for only an extra Rs 1.5 lakhs over its guide stable-mate.

Let us just say you are still in doubt. Now, the Harrier was known for its broad and comfortable nature, a striking road existence, and for being packed reasonably well. What makes the 2020 Tata Harrier compelling over the earlier one, is the excess power and resultant revised dynamics, the addition of new attributes, convincing revisions, and the mouth-watering new red paint shade to stand out of any audience.

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