There is no hiding the fact that Mahindra is working on an all-new XUV500 for the Indian market. The 2021 XUV500 will be the new flagship of the homegrown manufacturer. This is because there are high chances that Mahindra will be discontinuing the Alturas G4 which used to be a CKD or a Complete Knocked Down unit. Due to this, they need to make sure that the XUV500 is a worthy contender to already a stiff market. Mahindra will be offering all the things that they can with the new SUV. So, here are 10 things that you need to know about the all-new Mahindra 2021 XUV500.
Render courtesy ACI
When the XUV500 was first launched no one has seen a design like it. Mahindra said that the design has been inspired by Cheetah. It came with vertical claw-like door handles and aggressive rear third quarter with those wide “hips” which helped in increasing the road presence of the XUV500. Mahindra is ensuring that the new XUV500 is able to gather a lot of attention just like the first generation did. They will give the same aggressive bonnet and grille design. Mahindra will offer C-shaped LED headlamps with LED Daytime Running Lamps. For the side profile, there will be newly designed diamond-cut alloy wheels and the 2021 XUV500 will be using door handles that will sit flush with the bodywork. This is the first time that we are seeing this type of door handles from a homegrown manufacturer.
Built with Ford
Mahindra and Ford have agreed to be in a joint venture. With this both, the manufacturers will be developing vehicles together. This will help Ford to lower its cost as the underpinnings, platform, research and development costs will be shared by Mahindra.
Ford will also be borrowing Mahindra’s new mStallion range of engines for their vehicles. Ford is helping in building the chassis and underpinnings which will be a lot stiffer when compared to the current generation of XUV500. Also, a new SUV from Ford is being built with the XUV500 and both the new SUVs will share parts.
Better Built Interior
The interior of the first generation XUV500 came with a plastic dashboard. They did upgrade it with leather when the facelift came in 2018. However, some materials did feel a bit flimsy and plasticky when compared to rivals like MG Hector and Kia Seltos. Fortunately, the new SUV will get a much more premium built interior that will use leather upholstery, soft-touch dashboard, soft-touch pads on the doors, better seats and a flat-bottom steering wheel. Mahindra will also offer a panoramic sunroof on the higher variants that will open up a sense of airiness for the occupants.
The new SUV will be longer and wider than the current generation XUV500. This will help in increasing the cabin space and shoulder room for the occupants. The 2021 XUV500 will also have a longer wheelbase to liberate more legroom for the rear occupants.
Features and equipment
Mahindra XUV500 is known to offer a load of equipment and features. This is what it made unique when it was first launched in the Indian market. However, the competition has now caught up with the current generation of XUV500. The new generation is expected to offer some best or first in segment features. It will get an electric parking brake, hill hold control, hill descent control, drive modes, tyre pressure monitoring system, multi-function steering wheel, cruise control and a lot more. The highlight of the cabin will be the two horizontally placed screens that are designed to look like they are a single panel. This is the same design language that we have seen on Mercedes-Benz models. While the left screen will be the touchscreen infotainment system that will come with Android Auto, the right screen will be for the digital instrument cluster. However, this design will be available on higher variants only, the lower variants will get traditional dials with a multi-information display just like we have seen on the 2020 Thar.
Mahindra 2021 XUV500 will be powered by two new engines. There will be a 2.2-litre mHawk diesel engine and a 2.0-litre mStallion petrol engine. These are the engines that will power all Mahindra cars from now on. We have seen these on the new Thar. The 2.2-litre diesel engine is expected to produce around 185 PS while the 2.0-litre turbocharged, direct-injection petrol engine will produce 190 PS. Both the engines will be offered with a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 6-speed torque-converter automatic gearbox sourced from Aisin.
Better handling dynamics
As the platform and chassis are being developed with the help of Ford, we can expect some better handling SUVs from Mahindra. Ford is known to strike the right balance between handling and ride quality. Ford Endeavour is one of the best handling SUVs that you can currently get in the Indian market. So, is the Ford Figo, Ecosport and the Aspire. All of them are appreciated because of their fantastic handling dynamics.
Comfortable for occupants
We know that the rear seats are not really the most comfortable place to be in when it comes to sitting in SUVs. The current generation of XUV500 also faced the same issue. There was quite a bit of body roll which made the rear occupants toss around. Also, the third row was not the most comfortable. Mahindra Engineers have kept their focus on the rear occupants this time. So, we can expect a better riding XUV500 that keeps the rear occupants also comfortable.
There are rumours that the 2021 XUV500 will be offered with ADAS or Autonomous Driving Assist System. This is because some of the earlier spy shots showcased various sensors mounted in the lower half of the bumper that looked like a radar. There was also a camera mounted just below the inside rearview mirror. This means that there is a possibility of ADAS features being offered with the upcoming XUV500. It might come with features like frontal collision warning, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, and autonomous emergency braking. Currently, only the MG Gloster comes with ADAS features and is a lot more expensive than the mid-size SUVs. So, these features could attract a lot of attention if Mahindra decides to implement them as the XUV500 will become the cheapest SUV to get Autonomous features.
The new XUV500 is expected to launch in mid-2021. It will be competing against the MG Hector Plus and the upcoming Hyundai Creta 7-seater and the Tata Gravitas. The base variant of the 2021 XUV500 should cost around Rs. 14 lakhs ex-showroom, while the top-end all-wheel drive and an automatic variant should cost around Rs. 22 lakhs ex-showroom.