Mahindra Quanto review, test drive

    Mahindra brings hatch benefits to a compact SUV, but does it work? Read our comprehensive review.

    Published on Nov 21, 2012 07:11:00 PM


    Powering the Quanto is a 1493cc, three-cylinder version of the powerful and capable 2.2-litre mHawk common-rail diesel engine. M&M engineers concentrated on insulating the cabin from noise and vibration and, for the most part, the Quanto is pleasantly refined. The engine settles down to a smooth idle and there’s only a hint of pitter-patter from the three-cylinder motor.

    While 98.6bhp of power and 24.5kgm of torque from the small-capacity engine may not appear generous, the well-judged gearing and the two-stage turbocharger (a first on this class of car) results in impressive driveability. The engine hits a sweet spot from as low as 1600rpm and there is a linear and strong tug all the way past 3000rpm, making the Quanto ideal for low-speed and in-traffic driving. Trundling along in third gear at 30-40kph, you need just a gentle squeeze of the throttle to ease past slower cars. However, the superb low-speed driveability comes at the cost of top-end punch. Even the mid-range isn’t particularly strong. The rubbery gearshift doesn’t feel great either, but it’s something you cannot avoid during quick overtaking manoeuvres. The shortfall in grunt requires a downshift or two.

    Also, the three-cylinder diesel thrum becomes more apparent once you get past the 2500rpm mark and is hard to shake off at high revs. In fact, revving the engine to its 4600rpm redline is pointless as, in the last 1500rpm, it only gets more vocal without adding any pace. You feel the shortfall of power most when you load up the Quanto with a full complement of passengers or when powering up a hill road. For the record, the Quanto takes a leisurely 16 seconds to reach 100kph and reaches a top speed of 143kph.

    Mahindra Cars

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