UPDATE: New Mahindra 2.0-litre diesel to come with three power outputs
Mahindra is currently developing the next-generation Thar and is expected to launch the model in India in 2020. The new Thar will be powered by Mahindra’s new 2.0-litre diesel engine which will be compliant with BS-VI emissions regulations (unlike the current 2.5-litre unit). Power and torque will see a big jump from the current Thar’s 105hp/247Nm figures. Expect the new Thar to make 140hp and upwards of 300Nm of torque. The higher output will not only help on rough terrains but also give it the necessary go on the highway.
Observe keenly and you’ll notice with the bump in output, the Thar just matches up in terms of performance to its rival, the Force Gurkha, which recently received a new 2.2-litre engine that makes 140hp and 321Nm of torque. But Mahindra has plans to boost the output for the Thar later in its life cycle. The same engine will be offered in 180hp form on the next-gen XUV500.
Apart from an increase in power, the next-gen Thar is also expected to offer better drivability and comfort, thanks to an enhanced front suspension – which will be enhanced for on-road use – and larger dimensions, including a wider track.
While not much is known in terms of looks, insiders suggest the designers have been asked to make next-gen Thar look more modern while retaining its original character.
But while the new Thar is expected to see an improvement in terms of power, drivability and comfort, off-road ability might not be as good as before. And this is because the Gen3 chassis on which it is based has about 10 percent less wheel articulation than the current Thar chassis. However, Mahindra engineers are in a bid to overcome this limitation.
The new Thar will be built to comply with latest crash-test norms and will feature a driver’s-side airbag, ABS and rear parking sensors. The Gen3 chassis, which underpins the latest Scorpio and the TUV range, is fully crash compliant.
However, it is likely that the current Thar won’t meet the safety norms that come into effect on April 1, 2019 - which require mandatory fitment of ABS - as well as the crash test norms which come into force on October 1, 2019. This means there is a possibility that Mahindra’s line-up may not include the model for a while.
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IMAGE SOURCE: 4x4 India on Facebook