An affordable Convertible SUV to be showcased by Mahindra & Mahindra at Auto Expo 2018.
After Tata’s crack at bringing an affordable version of a Jaguar Land Rover offering to the masses, fellow Indian automaker Mahindra has gone ahead and revealed its offering which shares similar aspirations. Mahindra is all set to showcase a convertible, sub-four metre SUV at the upcoming 2018 Indian Auto Expo.
Convertible SUVs as a concept, dates all the way back to the inception of Sports Utility Vehicles. Ranging from the original Willy’s Jeep and the first ever Land Rover Discovery to the current soft top iterations in form of Jeep Wrangler, Mahindra Thar and many more. Automakers have also introduced hardtop convertible SUVs in recent years like the convertible Land Rover Evouqe and these offerings have received a lot of admiration.
Mahindra’s convertible will be based on its TUV 300 compact SUV platform. This is not an easy undertaking because removing the roof off a car requires extra strengthening and support to ensure the solidity and integrity of the structure remains intact. Considering that TUV 300 comes with a ladder frame chassis, which makes this task even more daunting.
During the 2016 Indian Auto Expo, Mahindra’s XUV Aero with its Ford Mustang inspired rear-end, coupe stance and suicide doors stole the spotlight. This time around we believe that Mahindra’s convertible sub- four metre SUV will be the show stopper for the Indian automaker.
Under the hood, it is unlikely that Mahindra will incorporate its 1.99-litre mHawk diesel engine, which we find in the XUV W4. Instead, we believe that this SUV will come with a more powerful, retuned version of the 1.5-litre three-cylinder mHawk100 diesel engine. Taking into account the extra weight the structure strengthening components will add to the car, a smaller engine will help in weight reduction.
Mahindra has not released much information revealing the details of the convertible, but this car will be one of the most exciting concepts to be presented at the Expo. The Expo will also mark its fate because going off the interest garnered by the convertible during the showcase, Mahindra will go ahead and decide whether it wants to put the concept into production or not. The Indian automaker’s history with the expo stands as a testament to the legitimacy of this proposition. In a matter of two years, Mahindra took its XUV Aero SUV coupe from a concept (which made its debut at the 2016 Expo) to a production-ready model which will be showcased in February this year.
(Image source: Autocar India)