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Tata Safari 2023 vs Skoda Kushaq Comparison for Performance Enthusiasts: The Best Variant in Rs 15-18 Lakh Range

The best performance cars, or top sports cars offer a dynamic and thrilling driving experience. But what is it that defines a high-performance car model? Let us compare Tata Safari 2023 and Skoda Kushaq, and see how their variants fare in terms of their performance.

In this article, we will share

  • What a performance enthusiast should look for in a car
  • Tata Safari 2023 vs Skoda Kushaq – a comprehensive analysis of their variants, performance and features
  • How to pick the right car for you

What a Performance Enthusiast Looks for in a Car

Here’s what to look for in a car as a performance enthusiast:

  • Acceleration and Speed – How quickly a car accelerates, what is its top speed
  • Power – How it pulls weight, how is its high speed stability, does it feel strained while going up the hills, or with AC on
  • Agility – How it behaves while turning at speeds
  • Driving Experience/Handling – Is the gearbox smooth and responsive, how is its steering/braking performance

A performance enthusiast prioritizes a vehicle’s ability to deliver exhilarating driving experiences. Key factors include a powerful engine with quick responsiveness and linear power delivery, a smooth and precise transmission, and agile handling with minimal body roll. 

Performance enthusiasts also value a well-tuned suspension that provides excellent high-speed stability and a sporty exhaust note. Additionally, features like advanced traction control systems, performance tires, and aerodynamic enhancements contribute to a car’s overall performance appeal.

Why Tata Safari 2023 and Skoda Kushaq are Popular

The Tata Safari 2023 and Skoda Kushaq have gained popularity among performance enthusiasts for different reasons. 

Tata Safari 2023 vs Skoda Kushaq Comparison for Performance Enthusiasts: The Best Variant in Rs 15-18 Lakh Range
Tata Safari

The Safari, known for its robust build quality and comfortable ride, offers a powerful 2.0-liter diesel engine that delivers 167.62 BHP and 350 Nm of torque. The engine’s linear power delivery and quick responsiveness make it a delight to drive, especially on highways. The Safari’s agile handling and minimal body roll further enhance its performance credentials.

On the other hand, the Skoda Kushaq has caught the attention of performance enthusiasts with its two turbocharged petrol engine options – a 1.0-liter TSI and a 1.5-liter TSI. The 1.5-liter TSI, in particular, is a favorite among enthusiasts, delivering an impressive 147.51 BHP and 250 Nm of torque. The Kushaq’s agile handling, precise steering, and advanced transmission options (both automatic and DSG) contribute to its performance appeal. 

Tata Safari 2023 vs Skoda Kushaq Comparison for Performance Enthusiasts: The Best Variant in Rs 15-18 Lakh Range
Skoda Kushaq

Additionally, the Kushaq’s modern and well-designed interior, along with its advanced features, make it an attractive choice for performance enthusiasts who seek a balance between driving excitement and comfort.

Tata Safari 2023 and Skoda Kushaq Variants Shortlist in Rs 15-18 Lakh Range

For Tata Safari 2023, we have:

Variant Price as on 9 April 2024
Smart ₹1,619,000
Smart (O) ₹1,669,000
Pure ₹1,769,000

For Skoda Kushaq, we have:

Variant Price as on 9 April 2024
1.0 TSI Ambition AT ₹1,549,000
1.5 TSI Ambition DSG ₹1,739,000

Tata Safari Smart

This variant is an excellent choice for performance enthusiasts who prefer the torquey nature of a diesel engine. The 2.0-liter engine produces 167.62 BHP and 350 Nm of torque, providing ample power for both city and highway driving. The Safari Smart’s agile handling, minimal body roll, and smooth manual transmission contribute to its performance appeal. If you’re safety conscious, you can read our comparison of the Safari 2023 with Maruti Suzuki Invicto.

Tata Safari 2023 vs Skoda Kushaq Comparison for Performance Enthusiasts: The Best Variant in Rs 15-18 Lakh Range
Tata Safari dashboard

Skoda Kushaq 1.0 TSI Ambition AT

Powered by a 1.0-liter TSI petrol engine, this variant offers a balance of performance and efficiency. The engine delivers 113.98 BHP and 178 Nm of torque, providing peppy performance in city driving conditions. The smooth-shifting torque converter automatic transmission ensures a comfortable and convenient driving experience. If you’re a gadget lover, you can read our comparison of the Kushaq with Hyundai Creta 2024.

Tata Safari 2023 vs Skoda Kushaq Comparison for Performance Enthusiasts: The Best Variant in Rs 15-18 Lakh Range
Skoda Kushaq

Skoda Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG

This variant is the top pick for performance enthusiasts, thanks to its powerful 1.5-liter TSI petrol engine that churns out 147.51 BHP and 250 Nm of torque. The quick-shifting 7-speed DSG transmission complements the engine’s performance, providing lightning-fast gear changes. The Kushaq’s agile handling and precise steering make it a joy to drive on winding roads. If you’re budget conscious, you can check out our comparison of the Kushaq with Hyundai Verna.

Our Pick for the Best Variant Among Tata Safari 2023 and Skoda Kushaq for Performance Enthusiasts

After carefully analyzing the attributes and features of the shortlisted variants, we recommend the Skoda Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG as the best option for performance enthusiasts.

The Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG is powered by a 1.5-liter turbocharged petrol engine that delivers an impressive 147.51 BHP and 250 Nm of torque. This engine offers quick acceleration and linear power delivery, making it a delight to drive on both city streets and highways. The 7-speed DSG transmission is a standout feature, providing lightning-fast gear changes and seamless power delivery. The transmission’s responsiveness and smooth operation enhance the overall driving experience.

In terms of handling, the Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG excels with its agile and precise steering, minimal body roll, and well-tuned suspension. The car feels planted and stable at high speeds, instilling confidence in the driver. The advanced traction control system and electronic stability control further enhance the Kushaq’s performance credentials.

Tata Safari 2023 vs Skoda Kushaq Comparison for Performance Enthusiasts: The Best Variant in Rs 15-18 Lakh Range

The Ambition DSG variant also comes equipped with a host of features that appeal to performance enthusiasts, such as LED headlights with cornering function, a responsive touchscreen infotainment system, and automatic climate control. The well-designed interior, with its premium materials and supportive seats, adds to the car’s overall appeal.

Overall, the Skoda Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG’s combination of powerful performance, advanced transmission, agile handling, and modern features make it the best choice for performance enthusiasts among the compared variants.

The Top 3 Choices

  1. Skoda Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG
  2. Tata Safari Smart
  3. Skoda Kushaq 1.0 TSI Ambition AT
Attribute Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG Safari Smart Kushaq 1.0 TSI Ambition AT
Engine – power (BHP) 147.51 167.62 113.98
Engine – Torque (Nm) 250 350 178
Transmission – # of gears 7 6 6
Turbocharging Yes Yes Yes
ESC Yes Yes Yes
Traction Control Yes Yes Yes
LED Headlights Yes Yes Yes
Cornering headlamps Yes No Yes

How to Pick the Right Car for You

  • The Skoda Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG takes the top spot with its powerful 1.5-liter TSI engine, quick-shifting 7-speed DSG transmission, and agile handling. The Kushaq’s advanced features and modern interior further enhance its appeal to performance enthusiasts.
  • The Tata Safari Smart secures the second position, primarily due to its torquey 2.0-liter diesel engine and agile handling. While it may not match the outright performance of the Kushaq 1.5 TSI, the Safari Smart’s balanced approach to performance and comfort makes it a compelling choice for enthusiasts who prioritize a spacious and practical vehicle.
  • The Skoda Kushaq 1.0 TSI Ambition AT ranks third on our list, offering a balance of performance and efficiency. The 1.0-liter TSI engine provides peppy performance in city driving conditions, while the smooth-shifting torque converter automatic transmission ensures a comfortable driving experience.

The Kushaq 1.5 TSI Ambition DSG’s powerful engine and advanced transmission make it the top choice for those who prioritize outright performance. The Safari Smart appeals to enthusiasts who desire a spacious and practical vehicle with good performance, while the Kushaq 1.0 TSI Ambition AT is a balanced option for those who seek a mix of performance and efficiency in city driving conditions.

If you’re interested in reading more such face-to-face comparisons of popular car variants, head over to our Buying Advice section.