Upon its launch, 2021 Mahindra XUV500 will rival the likes of Hector, Hector Plus, Harrier, Gravitas
The new generation Mahindra XUV500 is undoubtedly one of the most talked-about upcoming cars in recent times as the SUV has been extensively covered in websites and journals over the past year. Had it not been for the Covid-19 pandemic, we might have seen its running on roads by now.
Meanwhile, post the Covid-19 induced lockdown across the entire country, prototypes of the upcoming SUV have been spotted testing on a regular basis with some new updates being revealed about it after every other sighting. Recently, the second generation XUV500 was captured testing on the foothills of the Himalayas.
Coming to the test mule spied, judging by the looks of it, it seems to be a final production-spec model of the upcoming Mahindra SUV. Despite being heavily covered in camouflage, this prototype can be seen with production ready parts, suggesting that the new-gen XUV500 might have entered into its final phase of testing.
Reasons for testing at higher altitudes
A video of the same has been uploaded on YouTube showing the upcoming SUV being tested with the beautiful hills in the background. High altitude testing is a common sight for every new car in development since it tests many attributes of a car.
Firstly, it tests out the engine’s power generating capacity in varying terrains and conditions. At high altitudes, oxygen levels are lower in comparison to those in plains thus affecting an engine’s ability to burn fuel and therefore affecting a car’s performance.
Other crucial aspects evaluated in these hill testings are a car’s ride and handling. Driving around the ghats helps manufacturers understand a car’s riding dynamics so that it can tune the car’s suspension accordingly. These tests become furthermore critical as it gives the carmaker an idea about its steering setup and feedback.
Apart from these, profile and cross-section of tyres are also tested whether it could provide the necessary grip on tarmac or not. Other than these, electronic aids such as hill-start assist, hill descent-control might be evaluated for their efficacy.
Expected Powertrain, Transmission options
Next-gen XUV500 is likely to be offered with two engine options and as many transmission oppositions. The first is a 2.2-litre four-cylinder mHawk diesel engine while the latter is a 2.0-litre four-cylinder mStallion turbo petrol engine. Both units can be had with either a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic gearbox options.
The same powertrain options are also offered in the new generation Mahindra Thar although, in XUV500, power output is likely to be rated at a slightly higher value. The upcoming SUV is likely to come out in market by next year March-April 2021. Expect prices to be in the Rs 14-20 lakh range, ex-sh.