The new Thar looks like a Wrangler that shrunk in the wash, and that’s certainly not a bad thing in our book.
MUMBAI – Mahindra has pulled the covers off its all-new Thar mini off-roader and the newcomer looks significantly more modern than its rudimentary predecessor.
With the Suzuki Jimny clearly in its crosshairs, the Thar is still a hardcore 4×4 at heart, with body-on-frame construction, a transfer case with low-range gearing and a mechanical locking diff on the rear axle. Mahindra also claims class-leading approach, departure and breakover angles (of 41.8, 36.8 and 27.0 degrees respectively) while the wading depth is listed at 650mm.
While its predecessor took its design inspiration from the original Willys Jeep, which Mahindra built under licence in the 1950s, the new Thar looks like a Wrangler that shrunk in the wash, and that’s certainly not a bad thing in our book. The Thar is also offered with hard top and convertible roof options.
Mahindra describes the new Thar as a “quantum leap in terms of performance, everyday comfort and convenience, technology and safety”.
Speaking of performance, the customers in India will get to choose between a 2.2-litre turbodiesel engine, which produces 97kW and 320Nm, and a 2-litre turbopetrol that’s good for 110kW and 320Nm. These engines can be paired with a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission.
The cabin has been thoroughly modified too, and now features a drizzle resistant 17.8cm touchscreen infotainment system (which has its own Adventure Calendar) as well as cruise control and a multi-function steering wheel. The Thar has also played catch-up on the safety front, with features like dual front airbags and ESP stability control with rollover mitigation.
The new Thar will go on sale in India this October, but there’s no word yet on when the little rock crawler will hit South African shores.