20111220

Mahindra mini-Xylo (U203) seen testing near Pune




Mahindra, the fast-rising Indian automotive company, is in one heck of an expansion mode right now. Be it in two-wheelers, be it in electric vehicles or be it in international acquisitions, Mahindra is into it all right now. This, my dear folks, could be the biggest of them all, as this particular model could become a sort of a trend-setter, creating an all-new segment in the crowded Indian automotive space and ruling it all by itself. How about a butch mini-SUV like vehicle with the proportions of a hatchback and the space and comfort of a MPV? Sounds like a sure-shot success formula, right? We think so too and so does Mahindra. The company has been developing a mini-MPV based on the Xylo for quite some time now and the test mules have been spotted many times at various places.

This latest test vehicle was spotted in the Mumbai-Pune Expressway a couple of days back indicating that Mahindra is leaving nothing to chance and the launch could still be a few months away. Remember that it was the Premier Rio which started the trend of mini-SUV in India. But, poor fit and finish, questionable quality due to its Chinese inheritance and overall negative perception of the Premier brand all but ensured that the Rio never took off in our market. Similar in concept and slightly bigger than the Premier Rio and, to an extent, the Maruti-Suzuki Wagon-R, the mini-Xylo (or whatever it is going to be called) has all the potential to make it really big and eat into the market share of small cars in India.

Following the footsteps of its bigger sibling, the mini-Xylo would be having more-than-adequate passenger room and the big advantage of a powerful and frugal diesel engine. To get an idea of how big this vehicle is, look at the picture in which the mini-Xylo completely dwarfs the Tata Indigo just ahead of it. The tall and boxy design along with touches like tailgate-mounted spare tire gives this vehicle the mini-SUV look that many Indians love and crave for. Just like the XUV 500 exceeded all expectations, smashed all sales records and created a segment on its own, we can expect the mini-Xylo to do the same in a much more competitive and affordable price point.

By the way, thanks to our reader friend BS Guru for sending us these snaps and giving us the info that this particular test vehicle was comfortably doing around 150 kph in the Expressway and that they had a very tough time keeping up with it. With all these tidbits flowing in, the expectations are only getting bigger and bigger and we just can't wait for this model to hit the market.

2 comments:

  1. Well it just spoils my expectations!
    I wanna buy that next season!

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    1. castors - You better wait and get this one. Going by Mahindra's form in the recent launches, we are sure that the mini-Xylo (or whatever it will be named) is going to be a mighty competent compact UV.

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