Mahindra & Mahindra introduced its dedicated off-roader, the Thar, more than nine years ago. Having garnered a unique set of customers over the years and let alone the dedicated fanbase, the first generation Thar will be giving way for a brand new model sometime next year and is expected to debut at the 2020 Auto Expo alongside the fourth generation Scorpio. Ahead of the new Thar’s arrival, Mahindra has now discontinued the DI variant in the domestic market due to a number of obvious reasons.
Having been devoid of the basic standard features like Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and airbags, Mahindra has no choice but to let go of this variant as it does not stick by the new and improved safety standards prevailing across the industry. The Thar had been offered in two diesel powertrain choices: a 2.5-litre DI and 2.5-litre CRDe.
The DI will be no longer and it produced 63 PS and 195 Nm of peak torque while the more powerful CRDe oil-burner – continuing to be under the bonnet developing 105 PS and 247 Nm – is paired with a four-wheel-drive system. The 2.5-litre DI is not the only engine to be axed though as the 1.2-litre diesel engine found in the KUV100 micro SUV will be discontinued, as it does not justify the costs involved in upgrading to meet BSVI emission standards coming into effect in April 2020 and passing the costs onto customers in the highly price sensitive segment would not make sense. Mahindra has also outlined its future engine plans amidst automobile manufacturers making changes to stick by the upcoming BSVI emission norms.
The next-generation Thar will indeed have BSVI compliant diesel engine and is based on an updated architecture with notable exterior changes. The interior will also be subjected to a number of revisions alongside getting new equipment. The 2020 Mahindra Thar will also have improved off-roading capabilities. The largest UV manufacturer in the country is also readying a farewell special to the current Thar as the Signature Edition dubbed Thar 700 will be launched soon and its production will be limited to just 700 units.