Mahindra Thar CRDe 4x4 BS-IV - Design Review
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Design Review of Mahindra Thar CRDe 4x4 BS-IV
Last Updated at 11:40 am, May 20, 2013Rating :
The Thar sticks to the conventional Mahindra lines
Car launches are a mixed bag of events. It is really hard to predict how impressed or how disappointed you return from them. No matter how good the car is, the time spent with it, and how, plays a major role. At times there is a comprehensive drive where you get to sample the true capabilities of the car while rest of the time there is just a spin round the corner – something just for the heck of it. In the recent times, one car launch I remember to be worth it has to be the Mahindra Thar. Of course there were marketing presentations but what made it exciting was some true blue off-roading to highlight what the Thar can actually do. Now that’s what I like!
And since that day, I had been waiting to get my hands on a road test vehicle and take it to places where I never dared before. What followed was three days of absolute fun on Mahindra’s latest offering.
This isn’t the first time Mahindra has done something like this. The Mahindra Classic, inspired by the older CJs swept jeep lovers off their feet and did pretty well in its time. And then Mahindra began concentrating on the Scorpio, Xylo and the likes and a lifestyle off-roader took a backseat. M&M tried to keep the spirit alive though with one-offs like the Mahindra Legend and the Quadro customisation program, often gracing their Auto Expo stands. The Thar was one such vehicle that evoked excitement among enthusiast a couple of Expos ago and Mahindra answered prayers by finally launching it.
Thankfully, Mahindra has retained the MM540 styling. It’s is subtler, more rounded off than the edgy CJ and is far more acceptable by today’s standards. Under the bodywork, the That is actually based on the Bolero’s hybrid ladderframe chassis. The huge proportions are highly intimidating and this is what you exactly want out of your off-roader. There are hints of the Jeep Wrangler in the curvy half front fenders. Then there is the stay-away-from-me full steel excavator-style front bumper and chrome bull bars (now that will be an instant hit in Punjab).
Mahindra has retained the old styling so much that even doors have wavy embossing like the old MM540 and there is nothing much to write home about it. It has been beefed up by chunky 16-inch alloys shod with fat 235/70 tyres and padded rollcage at the rear. The Thar is essentially an open-top and this means there is absolutely no weather protection on offer. The paintjob makes the Thar standout but the build quality fails to impress, especially the panel gaps and the quality of rubber beadings all around.
You have to give it to the Thar for looking purposeful though. It comes brimming with attitude and butch macho appeal that can make even a crore-rupee SUV look sissy in comparison. And this is just the starting package. Mahindra also offers you a host of customisation options ranging from bull bars, alloy wheels, tyres and other visual add-ons.
First Published on 01:25 pm, April 29, 2011