Mahindra XUV500 Review
Best Selling Entry-Level Luxury SUV in IndiaMonday, November 18, 2013
The Mahindra XUV500 is one of the newest additions to the D-segment of the SUV market in India. This vehicle is like no other currently on the market being developed entirely from scratch. The only similarity it has with another vehicle is the mHawk diesel engine which can also be found in the Scorpio. What exactly does the Mahindra have to offer? Should you buy one? If you are considering it, continue reading to find out more about this SUV; its performance, design, fuel efficiency, value for money and more.
The truth is that the XUV 500 does in fact make a bold statement just by looks alone. It has a large front bumper above which are placed large projector headlamps. Alongside the headlamps you will find recessed fog lamps which combined with the streaked air dam provide the front view of this vehicle with a dramatic effect – like looking into the face of a menacing cat. There is a balance between attention to detail and bold statements on this SUV and without a doubt it is quite impressive just looking at it. The door handles are paw inspired in keeping with the cheetah theme that the manufacturers were going after. In the rear you will find four pack tail lamps with tattoos that are unique to the Mahindra XUV 500. From front to back the vehicle is outfitted with bold curves which are what define this vehicle as a SUV.
The headlights, tail lights and fog lights features clear lens for bright and clear view. The huge wheel arcs of XUV500 gives it macho and rugged look which is further enhanced by huge 17 inch alloy wheels. At the rear it doesn't feature rear tail gate mounted spare wheel, the spare wheel has been positioned under the body of Mahindra XUV500. Designed entirely in-house at M&M’s world class research and development facility the Mahindra Research Valley at Chennai, the XUV500 is also the country’s first indigenous developed monocoque SUV with the first transverse engine offering from Mahindra. The XUV 500 features day-time running LEDs like we have seen in many cars and SUVs by Mercedes and Audi. The side view of XUV500 is the best and it gives a huge and clean look to the sports utility vehicle. XUV500’s large tailgate opens upwards and reveals large loading area with the rear row of seats folded flat.
Mahindra XUV500 is the most spacious and feature-rich sports utility vehicle in its segment. It features modern looking twin-pod instrument cluster, very stylish central console and all-new interesting design for the AC vents. The top-model of XUV500 will feature Remote central locking/Key-less entry system, climate control system, Cruise, audio, phone controls & voice command switches on steering, 6-inch colour touch screen infotainment display, AUX, Bluetooth and USB support, Flip key with remote central locking , 8-way adjustment for driver's seat, Electrically adjustable and retractable ORVMs, Centre arm rest with cup holders in 2nd row, Global positioning system, AC vents for rear passengers, Dual-tone theme for upholstery and dashboard, rear wiper/washer, Mobile charging points, height adjustable driver's seat and many cubby holes plus bottle/glass holders. The steering wheel of XUV500 has controls for the music system and Mahindra has designed it very well, the bottom has silver matte finish and rest of the part is leather clad. The design of central console is very good with integrated music system, controls for the automatic climate control system and integrated global positioning system.
Comfort and Convenience
Comfort and convenience were well thought of when putting the vehicle together. Adding to comfort and convenience is the GPS system that comes standard in the vehicle. There is also a driver information system, Intellipark Reverse Assist, Cruise Control, Light sensors and even Smart Rain sensors. All of these add to the comfort of the driver giving them the confidence that they can drive safely no matter where they are, what they need to do or what the weather conditions are like. It features DMF that enables engine noise reduction as well as vibration to provide a comfortable and smooth shifting of the gears along with a smooth and comfortable ride.
Dashboard and Instrument Cluster
The central touchscreen is quite a complete multifunctional feature that allows you to read many things such as the climate control settings, tire health info, satellite navigation, music settings as well as computer service. The XUV also includes cruise control, steering mounted controls, Bluetooth telephony that allows you to display your phone-book, reverse parking sensors, automatic lights and three row air condition where the second row has column mounted vents. Mahindra XUV 500’s instrument cluster features twin round shaped meters with a speed of 220km/h and the fuel gauge on the left side while on the right is the rev counter, smaller central dial with informative reading of temperature and oil. It also includes a business personified central console with huge switches and rotary control knobs that is very accessible and simple to use.
The XUV 500’s steering wheel gives you a very sporty look and feel with a nice and interesting appeal. The large central pad allows you to control the senses while the two small side stalks allows you to control the base for multifunction switching of phone and audio volume on the left and provides cruise control settings on the right. The Mahindra XUV 500’s digital touch screen is also very simple and easy to use. The audio system’s huge chrome rotary knob, polished top cover of the dashboard and the chrome strips can cause a little uneasiness for the driver if too much chrome is not your thing.
The central console of Mahindra XUV500 has a cascading waterfall with an instrument binnacle that allows the driver to read the information he needs. The acoustically proper cabin also is very spectacular when it comes to crisp, clear sound quality. The XUV's clean lounge also offers some good music. Certainly, the Mahindra XUV 500 has been evolving further. With the test of time and proper enhancements and developments, the new machine has the distinctive modern style and futuristic themed effect for its entertainment and music system console. It features 6-inch colour touch screen infotainment display and the music system can also play DVDs.
Engine and Gearbox
Mahindra XUV500 is powered by the same 2.2 litre diesel engine which is doing duty under the hood of Mahindra Scorpio but it has been fine-tuned to generate maximum power of 140 Bhp at 3750 rpm and maximum torque of 330 Nm at 1600 rpm. Mahindra XUV 500 features a six-speed manual gearbox. The ARAI certified mileage of XUV500 is 15.1 kmpl which is decent considering the size and weight of the sports utility vehicle. XUV500 is available in both 2 wheel-drive and 4 wheel-drive versions. Mahindra is also planning to launch a twin-turbo variant of XUV500, which is expected to generate maximum power of 170 bhp with maximum torque of 400 nm.
Acceleration and Performance
The mHawk 2.2 litre transverse diesel engine of the XUV 500 can deliver a140bhp output with an excellent 330Nm torque. When you step on the pedal, you be will passing by the outside world like Flash Gordon. The vehicle also includes a 5th generation variable turbocharger that allows you to have an instantaneous acceleration of 0-60 kmph in only 5.4 seconds. The Mahindra XUV 500 also presents the first 6-speed transmission that has been fully tested and developed from the manufacturers in India. The 6-speed transmission allows two overdrives and generates maximum speed and torque resulting in better acceleration and saving more fuel.
Despite all the excellent power and performance given by the Mahindra XUV 500, it still provides an unparalleled efficiency of 15.1 KM per litre (ARAI) resulting in excellent fuel economy.
The XUV 500’s safety features include Rollover Mitigation, Electronic Stability Program, ABS with EBD and Hill Descent and Hill Control. The Rollover Mitigation safety feature allows you to identify possible dangerous driving conditions which may result in the rolling over of the vehicle. The feature allows the ESP system to interfere and control the vehicle speed before the situation gets to its worst resulting in a reestablished stability. The XUV 500 also provides the drivers and passengers with optimum safety through its six air bag reinforcement. The side airbags, driver and passenger airbags and curtain airbags protect you from any harm. The XUV 500’s body includes side impact beams and considerably located crumple zones. These beams not only absorb crash energy but also the surrounding energy of the passenger compartment. In fact, the vehicle outstandingly passed the crash tests that are created according to European standards.
Aside from the safety and crash tests, the vehicle prototypes undergo a thorough dynamic testing in Australia, South Africa and across Europe. There were also critical weather tests being conducted in China and Sweden. These tests are just a few of the many part-integration tests that the vehicle has gone through conducted in many other countries of the world including the USA. After 2.5 million km of testing and validation, the vehicle was permitted for production.
Suspension and Brakes
The Mahindra XUV500 has NexTrac that allows the driver to control the clutch and other systems of the vehicle. The NexTrac is the modernized, electronically-controlled, Interactive Torque Management System. It allows you to automatically control the vehicle systems such as the Anti-lock Braking System, Steering Angle Sensor and Engine Management System. It also allows you to automatically restructure the torque between the front and rear wheels.
Ride and Handling
With a lot of features and excellent engine performance, you almost get all the benefits from the XUV 500 with regards to sporty utility vehicles. One of its greatest advantages is its more responsive steering which prevents the driver from feeling any hint of nervousness while driving the XUV. If you are going to test drive the vehicle on various road surfaces, you will never get scared and won’t be able to feel the difference in the steering. And even if you do three digit speeds on varied road surfaces and or do fast bends, not once would one feel nervous about it as the handling is impressively smooth.
The complete stability of the vehicle even if the brakes are applied suddenly in a straight line is excellent. You will feel that there are lesser see-saw effects when you are going around tight bends at high speed because it is setup more on the stiffer side thereby resulting in better performance. You will greatly appreciate the drive with the Mahindra XUV if you are one that loves fast driving and like a vehicle that is capable of reaching top speeds while not sacrificing maneuverability. However, you need to be watchful on the torque steering out going to the front wheels. You also need to observe closely the clutch; it might be of good quality and not heavy to use but it can leave you with an irritating calf muscle when you have to drive in “stop and go” city traffic.
Mahindra XUV500 is available in eight shades: Satin White, Volcano Black, Amazon Green, Moondust Silver, Tuscan Red, Opulant Purple, Arctic Blue (NEW) and Dolphin Grey. Warranty of Mahindra XUV500 When buying the vehicle, you will get peace of mind with a 3-year or 100000km warranty, a 3-year or 60000 km service plan and roadside assistance for the first year.
The XUV 500 also comes with a lot of accessories like the XUV 500 Ajanta Robust Guard, the XUV 500 Phantom Guard, the XUV 500 Carrier, Foot Rest, The Mahindra XUV carrier and Rear Guard. These accessories are made from superb high quality steel that guarantees high performance, rigidness and durability in the vehicle. These are specially developed not only to protect your vehicle but also to give an exquisite appearance to it.