Image above is a digital render of the 2020 Mahindra Thar
The second generation Mahindra Thar prototypes have been testing with heavy prototypes and pre-production body configurations for over a year now. The new off-roader which is set to be launched sometime later this year has now been spotted with fully production-ready body panels for the first time.
Although this particular example is disguised with white wrapping all around, we can make out several design features better than before. For starters, Mahindra has opted for bold and premium looking paint job in combination with contrast black alloy wheels.
While basic design elements have been retained, every single panel is new. The 2020 Mahindra Thar appears to be noticeably wider than its predecessor. This particular one seems to be equipped with a traditional fabric roof but it is to be noted Mahindra has been testing a hardtop version as well.
Previous spyshots confirmed that the new Thar receives a completely new dashboard with upmarket features such as a touchscreen infotainment system (reported to incorporate Apple CarPlay and Android Auto), a new instrument cluster with MID, multi-function steering wheel, etc. The front seats are plushier and sporty.
While the entry level variants are expected to adopt traditional rear longitudinal bench seats, some variants will feature conventional forward facing seats to appeal to family car buyers. ABS and dual front airbags will be standard fitment along with speed alert system and reverse parking sensors.
Based on a new platform that has been developed from scratch, the 2020 Mahindra Thar is expected to have improved off-roading abilities. Propulsion would come from a BS6-ready version of the 2.2-liter mHawk diesel engine which is set to generate around 140 hp. A 2.0-liter turbocharged direct injection petrol engine belonging to the recently revealed mStallion family is also expected to be on offer. Standard transmission would be a 6-speed manual unit and an automatic box is likely to be introduced at a later stage.
Being a true blue off-roader, higher variants of the new Mahindra Thar will be equipped with a 4×4 system, replete with low-transfer case. It’s reasonable to assume that ground clearance, approach and departure angles to be better than those of the outgoing version.
The 2020 Mahindra Thar will be competing with next generation Force Gurkha which debuted at the Auto Expo 2020. Maruti is expected field its Jimny compact off-roader as well in this segment.
With a wider appeal, improved practicality, enhanced safety and new upmarket features, the new gen Thar would be aiming to cater to a much larger audience base than its predecessor.