Charting the Legacy of Tata 407 and its SFC Range
Published On Jul 05, 2016
The year 2016 was a benchmark for Tata Motors as it celebrated 30 years of inception of one of its most celebrated product, Tata 407. Designed with the objective for addressing basic Indian needs, this indigenous truck has effortlessly managed to rule the Indian commercial vehicle market and the Indian roads since its launch in 1986. When Tata Motors celebrated the silver jubilee of the vehicle in 2011, 407 accounted for seven out of every 10 vehicles sold in India. Apart from fleet owners, this affordable vehicle range is also adored by thousands of individual users, thus providing large scale employment benefits for the Indian diaspora.
Tata 407 was among the first to have demonstrated cutting-edge technological advancements in the automobile sector in India as against international competition. The success of Tata 407 also marked the introduction of other legendary vehicles in the commercial vehicle market. The SFC range from Tata trucks is one such series which has stemmed out from the 407 legacy and currently houses trucks such as the Tata SFC 407, Tata SFC 407 4x4, Tata SFC 407 EX HT and Tata SFC 407 EX Pick Up, all of them commanding their own line of loyal customers over the years.
Tata SFC 407
Starting at an ex-showroom price of INR 7.6 lakh, Tata SFC 407 comes in three load body options, High Side Deck (HSD), Drop Side Deck (DSD) and Cab. The truck has a 4 SP Turbo Intercooled BS-III 2956 cc engine with 4 engine cylinders. The vehicle generates a max power of 72.8 bhp @ 3050 rpm and a torque of 245 Nm @ 1400-1600 rpm. The wheelbase of 3100 mm and turning radius of 6000 mm helps in decent maneuvering on city roads. Tata SFC 407 also has a good gradeability of 22%, making navigation easy on basement slopes, elevated roads and bridges. The sturdiness of its aggregates is reflected in its GVW which is a good 5950 kg. The 3424 kg payload supports a good cargo volume, which ensures shorter trips and higher profitability.
Tata SFC 407 4x4
Tata SFC 407 4x4 is the tinier model of Tata SFC 407, though with higher engine outputs (97.2 bhp @ 2800 rpm and 300 Nm @ 1400-1500 rpm). Although the vehicle has the same price range (INR 7.6 lakh, ex-showroom) as Tata SFC 407, the significant difference between both is in terms of payload and GVW; Tata SFC 407 4x4 has a payload of 1700 kg and a GVW of 3800 kg that is way less than its heavy-weight counterpart. The truck also has a smaller wheelbase (3075 mm) and a higher turning radius (6900 mm), taking it a notch lower on the maneuverability aspect than SFC 407. However, the truck compensates in terms of gradeability (49.5%), a fuel tank of 90 liters (30 liters more than SFC 407) and max speed (120 km/hr), factors which enable the vehicle to cover greater distances and more remote locations without refueling stopovers. The overall dimensions of Tata SFC 407 4x4 remain the same as Tata SFC 407 and unlike SFC 407 which has three variants, this vehicle has only two variants, cab and DSD.
Tata SFC 407 EX HT
Available at a starting price of INR 7.9 lakh, this truck differs from Tata SFC 407 majorly in terms of engine specs, gradeability and turning radius. Tata SFC 407 EX HT generates a max power of 97.2bhp @ 2800rpm and a max torque of 300Nm @ 1400-1500rpm. Though the wheelbase of both SFC 407 and SFC 407 EX HT are the same, the turning radius of this EX HT version (5500 mm) is also lower than SFC 407. The max speed is lower than SFC 407, however, EX HT 407 has a higher gradeability at 31%.
Tata SFC 407 EX Pick Up
At INR 6 lakh (ex-showroom), Tata SFC 407 EX Pick Up is priced the lowest among the range. Though the power output (74 bhp @ 3,050 rpm) is slightly higher than SFC 407, torque and displacement for both the vehicles remain the same. The gradeability is also good (28%) and the turning radius is just 50 mm lesser than SFC 407. The wheelbase (2750 mm) is also a bit on the lower side. Overall, the vehicle is also smaller than SFC 407. Tata SFC 407 EX Pick Up also scores less in terms of ground clearance (170 mm), and the GVW (4,450 kgs) and payload capacity (2,250 kg) are also significantly lower. Thus we can safely say that Tata SFC 407 EX Pick Up is the most basic model amongst the entire SFC range.