Tata Motors has bagged an order of 3192 units of its Safari Storme 4×4 for the prestigious Indian Armed Forces. Under the newly formed GS800 (General Service 800) category, the butch SUV will be supplied to the forces in phases. It will be replacing the age-old Maruti Gypsy in the 4×4 light-weight class.
Earlier, the Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD) had floated an RFP (Request For Proposals) for the procurement of the vehicles adhering to its three-point criteria – hard roofs, air conditioning and minimum payload capacity of 800kgs. Ticking all the three boxes, the Tata Safari Storme emerged as the clear winner, but not before it was tested in extreme conditions for a period of 15 months.
Expectedly, the Safari Storme 4×4 version being sent to the security forces will be different from the stock one and will feature upgraded drivetrain and a modified suspension.
Earlier in July, 2015, the carmaker signed the contract for the Tata High Mobility Vehicle 6×6 in the 10-tonne category, replacing Tatra. The company has been supplying vehicles to the Indian Army and Paramilitary forces since 1958, and so far, has shipped 1,50,000 units.
Under its Defence Solutions, it offers a wide range of vehicles belonging to light, medium and heavy category including logistics, tactical, armoured and specialist low maintenance vehicles. Tata Motors has been exporting its rugged defence vehicles to the SAARC, ASEAN and African regions as well. It also supplies these machines to the UN for peacekeeping missions.