The ageing but a preferred choice to tackle impossible terrains, Maruti Suzuki Gypsy is now being phased out of the Indian Army for the Tata Safari Storme
The Indian Army has signed a contract with Tata Motors for supplying the Safari Storme that will replace the Maruti Suzuki Gypsy as the preferred army vehicle, claims a report from ET Now. The battle for this deal had been going on between Tata Motors and Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd since 2013, where the latter had offered the Scorpio.
Both cars were put through extreme physical testing where they were tested through different weather conditions and terrains to assess which of the two SUVs would be the ideal choice for the Army. Currently, the Indian Army will buy 3,200 Safari Storme SUVs from Tata Motors.
The Gypsy has been the preferred choice of the Indian Army for decades due to its ability to work in all weather conditions and exceptional off-road capability along with easy and low-cost maintenance.
That said, Maruti Suzuki did not update the Gypsy in line with modern technology evolution, which led to the newer needs from the forces and eventually the decision of replacement. Currently, there is no official statement issued from the Indian Army on this matter.
The Tata Safari Storme is powered by a 2.2 litre diesel engine that generates 156 hp of power and torque is 400 Nm of torque. The SUV comes with 6-speed manual transmission. Both options can be paired to an all-wheel-drive system with a low-ratio transfer case, which is useful in bad weather and/or bad road conditions.
Before the selection of the Safari Storme, the Indian carmaker also developed a wheeled amphibious armored personnel carrier, Tata Kestrel, that was made in association with Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). The Kestrel will replace the existing Armoured Personnel Carrier (APCs). The Kestrel will start serving the Indian Army from 2017.