Porsche is one of the most popular sports car manufacturers in the world. They offer a variety of supercars and sports cars in their lineup. Last year, the German car manufacturer’s name made headlines when they introduced the Porsche 911 Dakar. Many people were instantly drawn to it because it offered the best of both worlds – the design and power of a sports car while providing higher ground clearance like an SUV, making it much more practical. However, Porsche didn’t always have the name Dakar in mind. They originally had another name, but due to objections from Tata Motors, they renamed the car to Dakar. Curious about the previous name? It was Safari.
We already know that Safari is a name that Tata Motors has been using for years. It was used in the original Safari, and even the current version continues to use the same name. So, it was clear that Tata did not want to relinquish the Safari nameplate. Tata even holds a trademark for the ‘Safari’ name. When Tata learned that Porsche planned to name the rugged-looking version of the 911 as the 911 Safari, they raised the issue and ensured that Porsche changed it.
Thomas Krickleberg, the head of the Porsche 911 Dakar project, confirmed that the rugged version of the 911 was initially planned to be named 911 Safari. This choice was made because the name Safari is associated with the aura of off-roading, beefed-up tires, and suspension in rugged vehicles worldwide. However, Tata Motors refused to grant Porsche permission to use the Safari suffix, citing copyright infringement laws. When Porsche was denied permission, they naturally began searching for alternative options. After conducting more research, they decided to name the car the 911 Dakar, which is one of the toughest races in the world.
Tata Motors currently offers the Safari in the market and recently introduced a facelifted version. However, this SUV has nothing in common with the original Safari except the name. The first-generation Tata Safari was launched back in 1998 and was the flagship model for the Indian car manufacturer. Tata had this SUV in the market for almost two decades but eventually discontinued it due to the BS6 emission norms. Later, the manufacturer decided to revive the Safari nameplate by offering this name to the 7-seater version of the Harrier.
Compared to the older generation, the current-generation Safari is entirely different. It features a monocoque chassis and a front-wheel-drive layout. It doesn’t offer 4×4 in any of the variants. Tata has improved the interior, giving it a much more premium look than before. Tata is also offering features such as a panoramic sunroof, automatic climate control, ventilated seats, leatherette upholstery, a touchscreen infotainment system, and more. It is available with a 2.0-liter turbocharged diesel engine that produces 170 PS and 350 Nm of peak torque. This engine is offered with a 6-speed manual and a 6-speed automatic transmission.