Mahindra to launch Thar in India soon

Mahindra & Mahindra is now revving up to launch a similar offering in the Indian market, targeting the growing ‘Fast and the Furious’ fan club in the country. The Thar will be launched by end of this year or early 2011.

M&M is re-entering this slot with its Thar, betting big on the product in the light of the changing lifestyles of the younger generation. The soft-roof vehicle will be powered by a 2.6 litre turbo-charged engine, with a price tag of Rs 5-5.5 lakh, the sources said. The target consumers should be in the late 30s to early 40s age group especially amongst off-roading enthusiasts and as a lifestyle product.

The Mahindra Thar, a derivative of the globally renowned Commander Jeep 5 (CJ5), has improved suspensions and features and better ground clearance to take on tough roads. It is powered by a 2.5 litre CRDi diesel engine.

M&M, which is selling the Thar in South Africa for the last couple of years, plans to sell 5,000 units in India annually, although initially, it may not aim for higher numbers and instead concentrate on brand positioning. The company is expecting to gain better mileage for the product in Kerala, Rajasthan and the North-East, apart from the rural areas as the product is designed to negotiate rough and rugged terrains, the sources said.

M&M plans to produce the Thar on the Scorpio SUV assembly line at its Kandivili unit.