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Tata Motors introduced the Harrier SUV in the Indian market a year ago. The Tata Harrier SUV was the brand's first product to be part of its new design philosophy and architecture. At the time of launch, the Harrier SUV looked very promising, offering large proportions, commanding road presence, modern styling and a cabin packed with features and equipment.
However, the Tata Harrier failed to carry forward the momentum after the initial hype with sales spiralling down month-on-month. One of the reasons for this was the absence of an automatic transmission on offer.
Now, the company has finally introduced the Tata Harrier with an automatic transmission. Apart from the addition of the new gearbox, Tata Motors has also updated the engine on the 2020 Harrier SUV to comply with the latest BS6 emission norms while also improving the power figures significantly.
However, will these new updates and improvements help the Harrier regain its lost position in the competitive SUV segment or is it too late? Let's find out.
Design & Style
The 2020 Tata Harrier BS6 carries forward the same design as the outgoing model. The Tata Harrier was the first product to feature the brand's ‘Impact 2.0' design language. This design has been carried forward on the 2020 model as well, with little to no changes made.
Starting from the front, the 2020 Tata Harrier comes with the same set of dual-LED headlamp units, with the LED DRL on top and the main projector headlamp cluster positioned below it. The fog lamps are positioned on the front bumper and come with a thin chrome strip on the housing. The front grille is similar to that on the outgoing model, with a blacked-out look.
Moving to the side and rear profiles of the 2020 Tata Harrier, we can notice a new set of 17-inch alloy wheel design, along with a sleeker and more proportionate looking wing mirrors. Apart from these two changes, the design on both the front and rear profiles remain untouched.
Tata Motors has, however, introduced a range of new colour options on the 2020 Harrier SUV. This includes the signature Calypso Red, Cocoa Sparkle, Orcus White, Black Dark Edition & Tolesto Grey. The Harrier also comes with a dual-tone paint scheme on the Calypso Red offered with a Blacked-out roof.
Interiors & Practicality
Similar to the exteriors, the cabin of the 2020 Tata Harrier also remains pretty much unchanged. The interiors of the new Harrier BS6 model carries forward the same cabin features including the 8.8-inch floating touchscreen infotainment system, 7-inch semi-digital instrument cluster, 9-speaker JBL surrounds sound system and chunky steering wheel with mounted-controls; among others.
The 2020 Tata Harrier also comes with the same wood elements and the brushed aluminium accents from the previous model, which does make the cabin look premium.
However, look closely and there are a few updates made. One of the main updates is the addition of a panoramic sunroof on the new Harrier. The large glass roof now makes the cabin look more premium than before, while also giving it a much airy feel as well.
Another addition to the list of features is the 6-way power-adjustable driver seat and the auto-dimming IRVM; both of which were missing on the previous model.
Tata Motors has also updated the overall fit and finish on the interiors. The seats continue to offer good cushioning for comfort, both at the front and rear. The large doors continue to offer good ingress and egress for passengers, while the smaller ORVMs offer a smaller blind-spot to the driver.
Boot space remains unchanged, with Tata Motors also offering a 60:40 rear split seat which can extend the luggage capacity as well.
Variants, Key Features & Safety
The new (2020) Tata Harrier SUV is offered in a range of variants: XE, XMA, XT, XZ, XZ+, XZA and XZA+. All variants of the new Harrier SUV are powered by the same engine and are packed with a host of features and equipment as well.
Key features on the 2020 Tata Harrier SUV
- Xenon LED projector headlamps
- LED DRLs, fog lamps with cornering function
- Follow-me-home headlamps
- 8.8-inch floating touchscreen infotainment system (Apple CarPlay & Android Auto compatible)
- 6-way power-adjustable driver seat with lumbar support
- 9-speaker JBL sound system
- 7-inch semi-digital instrument cluster
- Leather upholstery
- 17-inch dual-tone alloy wheels
- Panoramic sunroof
- Keyless entry
- Push-button start/stop
- Automatic climate control
- Electronically-adjustable & foldable ORVMs
- Mounted-controls on the steering wheel
- Cruise control
Safety features on the 2020 Tata Harrier
- 6 airbags
- ABS with EBD
- Electronic stability control
- Off-road ABS
- Hill descent control
- Hill-hold assist
- Cornering stability control
- Remote central locking
- Reverse parking camera
- ISOFIX child seat anchor points
- Traction control
- Roll-over mitigation
- Perimetric alarm system
Driving Impressions & Performance
Coming to the most important update on the 2020 Tata Harrier, its engine. The new SUV now comes with an updated BS6-compliant diesel unit, churning out an increased power output compared to the old model.
The 2020 Tata Harrier continues to be powered by the same 2.0-litre ‘Kryotec' diesel engine. However, along with the BS6 update the engine now produces 173bhp and 350Nm of peak torque. The engine comes mated to a standard six-speed manual gearbox, with the new addition of a six-speed automatic transmission as an option.
The updated engine instantly feels more powerful and well refined. There is now a good amount of power and torque across the rev range. The torque from the engine kicks in at around 1800rpm while the higher power output has increased the top end of the SUV marginally as well.
The manual transmission on the updated Harrier model now feels smoother, with the gears slotting into place easily. The new automatic transmission, however, does have a bit of hesitation between gear shifts. There is an initial lag between when you put your foot down and the downshift from the gearbox but post that there is a good surge of power delivery.
The difference between the ‘City' and ‘Sport' driving modes on the 2020 Tata Harrier is extremely noticeable. The ‘City' mode allows the gearbox to upshift more quickly, which translates to a more relaxed cruising out on the highway and improved fuel efficiency as well. The ‘Sport' mode, however, instantly holds on to gearshifts till the redline resulting in aggressive and sporty driving characteristics.
Tata Motors has also improved the suspension setup on the 2020 Harrier SUV. The rather large mid-size SUV from the brand soaks up potholes and bumps with ease. The steering wheel is light at low speeds and weighs up progressively at higher speeds, offering good confidence on the highway.
Having large dimensions, the 2020 Tata Harrier does suffer from a slight amount of body roll. Although, there is enough electronics on-board to prevent it from becoming uncontrollable. The brakes are sharp and progressive, there is also enough bite to bring it to a stop with ease.
The 2020 Tata Harrier is definitely a big upgrade from its old BS4 model. The six-speed automatic gearbox, with the improved engine, does offer stronger performance and better handling than the previous model. The addition of new features including a large panoramic sunroof further adds to its appeal.
Tata Motors seems to have heard the small niggles and complaints of its customers and added most of the extra features and equipment, missing from the previous model. However, the Harrier still misses out on connected technology, something which is quickly becoming a standard these days.