New Mahindra Scorpio review, road test
4th Nov 2014 11:43 am
Read the New Mahindra Scorpio review, road test from Autocar India; It may look similar, but it's actually a new car underneath. So how much of a step up is it?
‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ is a cliché Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) believes in when it comes to the Scorpio, and that’s understandable. This very SUV, when launched in 2002, completely transformed the face of M&M and has gone on to become a household name across the country. And with sales still going strong, the Scorpio continues to be at the core of M&M’s universe.
Meddling with a super star is always risky, which is why M&M hasn’t strayed far from the Scorpio formula. A series of updates over the years has improved the product considerably, but now 12 years on, it’s becoming hard to hide the Scorpio’s age – and its flaws – especially in the face of fresh competition.
Which is why M&M has given the Scorpio its biggest revamp yet and the second-generation model (W105) is largely new. But just how much better is it?
For a car that weighs around 1.8 tonnes and is powered by a 2.2-litre engine, fuel efficiency isn’t going to be the reason to buy one. In the city cycle, the Scorpio returned 11.1kpl which is an improvement over the previous model; on the highway, it delivered 14kpl, which gives this SUV a good 753km range between fill-ups.
With the older body shell carried over, the Scorpio at first seems more like a facelift than an all-new model. However, it is amply clear that the improvements run wide and deep to make it better in every respect. The styling is much sharper, the feature-packed cabin feels several generations superior and, crucially, the Scorpio is much nicer to drive.
No doubt it still has its flaws; the cabin ergonomics are far from perfect and the tall and narrow dimensions ultimately limit the improvements to ride and handling. But conversely, its the boxy proportions that give the Scorpio its special character. The high seating position, great visibility and strong engine give you a sense of control, which is a big part of the Scorpio's appeal. And when you factor in its price tag, which is more attractive than any other SUV in its class, the legendary Mahindra is even harder to overlook.