Mahindra and Mahindra has commenced the bookings of the new generation Thar. With prices starting from Rs 9.80 lakh (petrol, six seater soft top) to Rs12.95 lakh (four seater hard top), the four-wheel drive model is available in both automatic and manual transmission versions. Thar doesn’t have any direct competitor, but its pricing puts it in the league of mid-size and compact SUVs, including the Kia Seltos, Hyundai Creta, Vitara Brezza and Ford Ecosport among others.
“Mahindra has priced the model and its variants very competitively and it should translate into good volumes,” said a company dealer even as others expressed disappointment over the vehicles not being available for an immediate delivery and running the risk of losing on the initial momentum.
With the Thar, M&M has come a full circle. In a market where every other vehicle has an SUV tag, the company plans to stick to its core competence of making rugged, true-blue, all-terrain SUVs, Thar marks a fresh beginning for the 75-year-old firm that enjoyed an indomitable position in the SUV segment till 2012. The Thar is the first step towards that journey.
With newer entrants like Kia Motors quickly usurping the SUV market, can Thar be the volume spinner that Mahindra needs? Analysts have mixed views.
"The pre-launch euphoria created by the brand will help in sales pull and Mahindra will easily be able to achieve three to four times the earlier volume," says Puneet Gupta, associate director, IHS Markit. They could have priced the models more competitively to reach out to the masses, he added.
VG Ramki, managing partner and managing director at Aventeum, a consulting firm says, "It will be an uphill task for Mahindra to gain market share with the Thar under current market conditions. Even though it has all the features of an urban SUV, it will only have a limited appeal."
Available in three body styles – fixd soft-top, a cabriolet or convertible soft top and a fixed hard top, the model comes with two engine options – 2-litre petrol and a 2.2 litre diesel. The delivery of the model will commence from November. Designed and engineered in India and manufactured at Mahindra’s Nashik Plant, the model will be available in six colours, namely - Red rage, Mystic copper, Galaxy grey, Napoli Black, Rocky beige and Aquamarine.
“Over the years, the Thar has been a part of Mahindra’s rich history and has found its way into the hearts of many as an object of desire. On the occasion of the Group’s 75th anniversary, we have written another chapter in its glorious history,” said Pawan Goenka, MD & CEO, Mahindra & Mahindra.
In its all new avatar, the Thar is a notch higher in its timeless appeal, owing to its ability of being as comfortable on paved roads, as it has always been off-road. We are confident that the Thar tribe will grow stronger as a new set of customers come into its fold, said Goenka.
Designed and engineered in India and manufactured out of Mahindra’s Nashik Plant, the All-New Thar will be available in six colours, namely - Red Rage, Mystic Copper, Galaxy Grey, Napoli Black, Rocky Beige and Aquamarine. It is equipped with a range of active and passive safety features to keep all passengers secure, the company claimed.