Mahindra & Mahindra will launch not one, but two new compact SUVs in India next year. The S101 Micro SUV and the U301 Compact SUV are the two new vehicles that the Indian automaker has planned for the sub-4 meter compact car category in India. The 1.5 liter-3 cylinder twin turbo diesel engine that is currently used in the Quanto and a newly developed, 1.2 liter petrol engine that is under development by the Mahindra and Ssangyong will power the U301 and S101 respectively.
As the S101 is a Micro SUV that seeks to take on B-Segment hatchbacks, it remains to be seen whether Mahindra outfits a diesel engine to the vehicle. That said, a diesel engine for the U301 compact SUV is a given, considering the fact that the utility vehicle is based on the next-generation Bolero platform. Underpinned by a hydroformed ladder frame chassis, the U301 compact SUV will be aimed at younger buyers seeking ruggedness, utility and go-anywhere appeal in a compact footprint.
While a rear wheel drive layout will be standard on the U301, a four wheel drive layout could be served up as an option. Longer variants of the U301 will serve as the replacement to the best selling Bolero multi utility vehicle’s people carrying variants. The ladder frame equipped U301 Bolero compact SUV will be unique offering in India as every other compact SUV confirming to the sub-4 meter excise duty norms comes with a monocoque body.
Coming to the S101, the Micro SUV comes with a unique 3+3 seating arrangement. With an anticipated starting price tag close to the 5 lakh rupee mark, the monocoque bodied S101 Micro SUV promises to rewrite the rules of the game in India’s compact car market. A high riding position, ample ground clearance and an affordable price point will be the three major selling points of the S101 Micro SUV.