Mahindra XUV500 spotted on test – Automatic variant likely

Mahindra and Ssangyong are working with Aisin, a transmission major for Japan, for a new range of automatic transmissions. The new 6 speed automatic gearbox sourced from Aisin will be used on the Mahindra XUV500 and the Ssangyong X100 crossovers. Recently, a Mahindra XUV500 crossover test mule (codenamed W216) was spotted doing testing runs in India.

The test mule featured a AW Japan sticker on its rear windscreen, a possible indication that it is the XUV500 Automatic that was under test. Notably, AW stands for Aisin Warner, the name with which the Japanese transmission major established itself way back in 1969, as a collaboration between Aisin Sieki and Warner Corp. The company is now known as Aisin AW. 

The Mahindra XUV500 with the 6 speed automatic gearbox is also likely to get a more powerful engine, with the 2.2 liter mHawk turbo diesel motor tuned to output about 170 Bhp of peak power. Peak torque is also expected to improve form the current level of 330 Nm. The XUV500 was first launched in India during 2011, and the SUV’s automatic variant is likely to arrive by the middle of next year.

Since the XUV500 will turn 4 years old in India next year, the crossover is also likely to get a midlife makeover, apart from the new feature in the form of an automatic gearbox. A highly successful product for Mahindra, XUV500 sells more than all of the D-Segment sedans put together in India. The crossover is currently sold in four variants –  W4. W6, W8 and W8 All Wheel Drive.

All variants of the XUV500 come with ABS+EBD and airbags as standard safety equipment, and feature a six speed manual gearbox as standard. The crossover seats 7 and competes with the likes of the Tata Safari Storme and the Tata Aria in India. The XUV500 rolls out of Mahindra’s factory at Chakan, and is also exported to countries across the world. The addition of the automatic gearbox variant is expected to make the XUV500 more appealing in international markets.

Spyshot courtesy Motorbeam