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Mahindra Thar 2020 – All-New Generation Overview
I’m excited about the car I’m going to test drive today, and I had to drive out and bring it into its natural habitat. This is an iconic car. It is all about freedom and all about lifestyle. Yes, I’m talking about the brand new seldom do you find a car that becomes an icon. And the Mahindra Thar is exactly that.
Launched 10 years ago in a very bare-bones form without creature comforts like air conditioning. The first generation Mahindra Thar evolved from the romance that was the open GA classic design. Packed with the latest and best diesel powertrain technology of its time.
Good old-fashioned four-wheel drive and, of course, a soft-top. Tested on some of the roughest off-road courses across the country. It wowed many before it even hit the showroom floor. In time the Thar evolved into something more useful, and for many, it was a childhood dream. Reimagined boy did it excite a whole new audience of off-roaders. And lifestyle vehicles for whom the Thar was the perfect second or third vehicle.
2020 Mahindra Thar Exterior
Now, this time around, it is quite different. Because Mahindra is looking to take the tower mainstream. So they have made this a car that will appeal to all kinds of people. Not only ones that want to go to the outdoors.
Let’s take a look around the car. Before, we dove into more of the details. Well, there’s no denying when you first look at this car. It does bear resemblance to the Jeep Wrangler.
Well, they have tried to make it quite different from a lot of changes. This front grille now has these horizontal slats. The bonnet kind of slopes down. You have got the round headlamps for the first time Mahindra Thar gets DRL headlights. In the front large chunky bumper that tells you this is tough. This is butch it is an SUV. The front wheel arches curve down to the front where the fog lamp rest.
Of course, you have got those bonnet ties again that bear resemblance. And there is this wheel arch, which is tough. It quite wide extends out of the width of the car giving, the front a lot of widths. And under that wheel arch that extends to the side.
Thar has this tire it is an 18-inch large wheel with 255/65. So a good amount of rubber there. That will help the ride. Black cladding that runs into the floorboard. And around the rear, there’s contouring around the windows. You see that both front and rear under the window line squarish windows. A leaned back A-pillar, and of course, it squares down to the rear at the back as well.
Interesting details on the side of The m-Hawk Logo. The antenna, the Thar name that is emblazoned into the rearview mirror. And of course, this is an SUV. So, we have to talk about the ground clearance, which is 226 millimeters. And they say that the water weighting capacity is 650 millimeters. So you can go through anything.
In this one, you see the external hinges as well. Here on the doors a lot of these details tell you that this is also an outdoorsy vehicle. Let’s take a look around the back. We show at the rear, is this massive tail-mounted spare wheel. It is very square, the top of it is like a right angle. No tumblehome which we’re used to seeing at the top of the cars. When the car leans into the roof area, tail lamps have a hexagonal shape.
A feature that they’ve been talking about is this car. But this is the first of the areas I’ve seen it, and we can see that it’s a very short overhang at the rear. Which you can notice around the side, so that means it will be a good departure angle. Something necessary for a tough SUV like this.
Let’s take a look at the boot space. Well, it opens in two parts the bottom half of the tailgate opens up to give you access to the boot area. And the window can be opened upwards as well, of course, the seats split and fold to allow you more luggage. It is a bit of a step up into the cabin.
2020 Mahindra Thar Interior
Let’s take a look inside there is no grab handle on the driver’s side. But there is one on the passenger side. The other grab handle is right here on the dashboard. On the whole, it’s more modern it is far better than before, materials used are much richer.
There’s this nice carbon fiber kind of texture that sits in the middle of the two AC vents. Plastic, the matte, chrome, as well, even the upholstery, on the whole, a lot richer. The vents are also circular, and the movements for the vents are a bit flimsy and don’t direct the air up or down too. But that’s a small, bit of nitpicking I do. The dials as well a little basic and stand out amongst this.
Otherwise richer-looking interior. You do have steering-mounted controls. As well as lots of storage spaces:-
- One for the phone
- Cup holders
- Door pocket spaces
- You have nice toggle-like switches.
And, of course, controls for the AC vent in the middle of the dash. On the feature front, you do have –
- The USB ports
- As well the 12 volts charging socket in front
And of course, there are some interesting details like this silver badging. That is something that the customers wanted to feel like they got a piece of history. Then, of course, you do have the four-wheel-drive gear lever that is very easy to access. And of course, the main gear lever. That is a little bit longer than stalk. It could have been a little shorter. But on the whole, I’d say a nice looking interior and much much better than before it also has quite a few features.
Let’s take a look at it looks like a reasonable amount of space in the rear seat. And let’s get in there and see as I get out, I noticed there’s a star logo on the door. As well, while stepping out, I have to point out, and you can look down there, the floor is washable material. But it tends to be a little slippery when it’s wet while you’re getting in and out. Mahindra Thar’s seating capacity is 4 or 6 seats.
Let’s get into the rear, move the seat full forward flip it. Okay, I have to step in a bit of a tight squeeze into the back. And once I’m inside, let’s get the seatback. While I access the second row from the driver’s side. The passenger seat does flip forward a little more, so access is better. But it is still tight, you notice a fair amount of room.
This front seat has been pushed to the back. I’m 5’10 so, a good amount of room over here. A taller person also gets a decent amount of legroom. You can stretch your feet out, but the rear wheel well intrudes. So, this is a very small part, the base kind of comes into the leg area. The wheel well comes and intrudes into the seating area as well. So you know where there could have been space for three.
It’s now good enough for two at the back, a good amount of headroom, you can also see the exposed roll bar. Because this is the hardtop version where the top can come off as well. And some rustic-looking grab handles, Which is quite interesting. It’s a comfortable place to be in this back seat, and even adults can sit here for a long while.
2020 Mahindra Thar Driving Experience
Since this is the Thar, I chose to begin my drive in the terrain that it calls home. Now, though, we didn’t do any serious off-roading. We did go through a fair amount of slush, broken roads, stony surfaces with large rocks. And we did wade through some water, and the Thar sailed through it all as if it were tarmac road.
The Thar begs you to keep going on exploring and having fun unfettered by the terrain. But it was time for me to head back, so I also got a chance to see how it fares out on the highway and in traffic.
You feel like the king of the road. It’s got this nice high-up seating position. You get great visibility. You know the wide windscreen allows you to see the full extent left to right. I mean, there are no blind spots as such. And though they’re large rearview mirrors, which help you get a great view at the back. They don’t block anything, so yeah, as far as visibility goes, it’s great.
2020 Mahindra Thar 2-liter Diesel
You know though it’s big, it doesn’t feel like that from behind the wheel. I’m nipping in and out of traffic gaps quite comfortably. I feel quite invincible. Nobody wants to mess with me, nobody wants to get in my way, and I like that feeling.
Talking about performance Mahindra has chosen the Thar to debut two brand new engines. A 152 horsepower 2-liter direct-injection turbo petrol. And an all-new 2.2-liter diesel that produces 132 horsepower. Both engines come with the 6-speed manual and auto transmissions with torque converter.
And I was driving the diesel first up this engine is drivable. I have slowed down to a crawl, 1000 rpm third gear put my foot down, no hesitation. Just picks up moves on. And then continues to breathe easy post, 1200 rpm. You can feel the pace, pick up, and it’s got a nice flat linear acceleration after that. And power feels more than adequate. The diesel is fairly refined. And it only gets audible when you push hard and crosses past the 3000 rpm mark, and even then, it’s not intrusive.
Now, this is a new ladder-frame chassis. And I have to say it has made a big difference to the ride, to the handling, tunneling around in the city. This rounds off the bumps and potholes well. So, you don’t feel many filters through to the car. It does get tossed around a little bit over the bigger bumps and potholes. But then that’s to be expected from something like this out on the highway. The Thar fell stable and planted. Only getting tossed up over bad sections.
2020 Mahindra Thar 2.2 liter petrol
I’m here with the petrol automatic 2.2-liter petrol automatic driving it in town. And this is the environment where a lot of people will use the new car. Don’t forget this car has been designed not for the outdoors but even for the urban jungle.
The first impression of this engine is how smooth it is. And above all, how responsive it is stab the throttle, and it shoots forward. And that’s what I like about Mahindra Thar And their calibration. They don’t throttle the engine for that last Kpl and fuel consumption. They focus on power and performance, and that’s how it feels in this new car. The Mahindra Thar 2020 is expected to offer a highway mileage of 13.0 kmpl. The Manual Diesel variant has a mileage of 13.0 kmpl.
You always feel that this got enough surge, you tap it, and it shoots forward. And this two-liter petrol super-super is impressive, this is gonna be the surprise, everyone. Because a lot of people who want the convenience of an automatic. Who wants that little bit of refinement is going to want this variant. So refined vehicle refinement is one of the strengths. And one of the things that will surprise the traditional owners. The only thing you can hear is the canvas stop that is after 80 kph starts flapping about. A fair bit of the Thar is easy to handle.
It has a very reassuring feel, this white track feels very stable. I mean, this is a car that you can cruise on highways. But there’s one thing I’d like improved is the brakes, they’re a bit grabby, and they don’t have enough bite.
let’s take a look at the two variants of the Thar LX & AX Variants:-
2020 MAHINDRA THAR LX VARIANT
- 18-inch alloy wheels
- LED daytime running lights
- 8-way adjustable front seats
- 7-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto
- Steering-mounted controls
- Cruise control
- Roof-mounted speakers
- Electrically adjustable ORVMS
- Tilt-adjustable steering wheel
- Petrol Engine with an automatic gearbox
- Diesel engine with the manual or automatic option
- Brake lock front differential
- Mechanical Lock rear differential
- ESP with rollover mitigation
- Tyre pressure monitoring
- Hill-start and descent control
- Isofix child seat mounts
2020 MAHINDRA THAR AX VARIANT
- Petrol or Diesel engine with manual gearbox
- Mechanical lock rear differential
- Dual airbags
- ABS with EBD
- Central locking
- Rear parking sensors
- Fixed soft top
- Convertible or hard top[Opt]
- 16-Inch steel wheels
- Side-facing rear seats
- Front-facing rear seats [Opt]
- Power windows
- Power steering
- Remote keyless entry[Opt]
So, this is the new Thar pretty exciting it has evolved a lot. Whether we talk about the looks, whether we talk about, the ride and handling. Whether we talk about the interior. The quality of it, all of it has been improved on every level.
Now it may not be as plush and comfortable as other vehicles around it may not be perfect. But, this is a car, that appeals to your emotions. It makes you want to go out and drive. Get out into the outdoors like I am doing today, and you don’t have to worry about a thing. The good part is that now more than ever before, it crosses the divide between being that outdoorsy vehicle. And still being comfortable enough to be in your everyday city drive as well.