Back in March, we exclusively reported that Mahindra is set to give its bestselling SUV, the Bolero, an upgrade that makes it compliant with India’s more stringent safety and emission standards. Now, a Bolero equipped with Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) has been recently spotted at a dealership, which indicates that its roll-out is on the horizon.
The SUV range is also expected to get features such as a driver-side airbag, seatbelt reminder, speed warning and rear parking sensors, before July 1, 2019. It will be followed by a more serious upgrade before October 1, 2019, which is the date by when all cars have to meet the stringent offset front and side crash standards. The requirements for full-frontal impact, offset-frontal impact and lateral/side impact have already been brought into force on new cars launched after October 1, 2017.
First of the new safety norms that come into force in India this year relate to ABS. Starting April 1, 2019, all four-wheelers manufactured in the country have to be compulsorily fitted with ABS.
The directive for fitment of ABS will be followed by a bunch of other mandatory vehicular safety measures, such as a driver-side airbag, a speed warning system, a seat-belt reminder for driver and co-driver and rear parking sensors that'll have to be standard on all cars from July 1, 2019.
In fact, Mahindra could also launch a facelift of the Bolero that meets all the regulatory requirements. The facelift will also get an upgraded engine by April 2020, because by then all internal combustion engines will have to shift to the much cleaner BS-VI standards. The unit could be an upgraded version of the tried-and-tested 2.5-litre diesel.
While sales performance of Mahindra’s reliable workhorse slumped in FY2019, with the model going home to 72,280 customers, down 2.25 percent from the previous year, it continued to be a strong performer in the segment. In fact, it is second only to the top performer, the Hyundai Creta (1,24,300 units).