Much of India lives in her villages, and 24X7 electricity is still a mirage in the larger cities, leave alone the countryside. Why, in fact Pune, one of the largest emerging metropolises of the country goes without power for 8 full hours on two Thursdays a month.
This is the ‘real’ India most of us live in. Amid such circumstances, a vehicle that can double up as a generator to power your home when the grid is down is just what the doctor ordered. Ladies and gentlemen, make way for the Polaris Multix. Essentially the smallest twin cab pick up truck in the country, the Multix is a clever piece of innovation that has BIG potential.
American lifestyle and off road vehicle giant Polaris has teamed with up with Indian commercial vehicle maker Eicher to come up with the Multix, which they will market India’s first personal utility vehicle. Prices start from a very affordable 2.32 lakh rupees, with the higher spec variant selling at 2.72 lakh rupees.
Seating for five adults is standard, with a loading bay at behind the cabin. Flexibility is one of the cornerstones of this vehicle, which can be configured to deliver 1,918 liters of usable luggage space. Clearly, Eicher and Polaris want to take the hustle to the Tata Magic Iris, squarely targeting rural and small town India.
Eicher and Polaris are treadingly cautiously though. Remember Eicher’s failed attempt to get a Royal Enfield factory going in Jaipur? Well, the same facility has been refashioned, with capacity to build upto 60,000 examples of the Multix. Going forward, this capacity can be doubled to 120,000 units.
The Multix is powered by a 510cc,single cylinder diesel engine with peak power of 9.8 Bhp coming at 3,000 rpm while a peak torque of 27.1 Nm is generated between 1,400 and 2,200 rpm. No tarmac scorcher this, but ask it to plug mud, it’ll happily oblige all day.
Some may even like taking the Multix off road, what with the vehicle’s copious ground clearance of 225 mm. Talking money, the Multix is meant to be owned by a wide swathe of small business owners, from ice cream vendors to village drama troupes. All this is courtesy the party trick – X-Port.
The X-Port is a built-in electric socket on the Multix, one that is capable of dispensing 3 KW of electricity. Now, that much power can power your home comfortably and even run your geyser while at it. When used as a generator, the Polaris Multix will consume about 0.7 liters of diesel per hour.
The Polaris Multix is equipped with independent suspension backed by Polaris’ expertise in developing ATVs that have even survived the Dakar. A tubular frame with a roll over protection system brings a modicum of safety to the equation. Do you still want that atrocious looking Bajaj RE60?