The experience of buying & owning a brand new Jeep is something not many of us can relate to, though a lot of BHPians have threads on building one. After all, it has been quite a while since the MM540 was sold to civilians. Predictably, when the inklings of a new Jeep, claimed to be a worthy successor to the MM540 lineage, came out in the open, it created tremendous expectation, anxiety, debate, hope and even headache. Surely a kind of buzz that few cars in recent automotive history have created.
The Thar has the promise of bringing an "adventure experience" to customers at an affordable price point. The only real competition to this Mahindra is from the Gypsy. But then, the Gypsy doesn't offer a diesel engine, power steering or decent ride quality. Mahindra is casting the net rather wide in terms of the potential market for this enigmatic 4x4. The target segment includes, but is not limited to:
The first thing you notice when you lay your eyes on the Thar is the legendary Jeep styling, the purposeful front stance and a generous helping of chrome. The Thar looks best in metallic shades as they effectively hide the surface imperfections of the antique MM540 derived body shell. A black Thar can look dull, and makes the imperfections too obvious, especially on the RHS of the body. A stock Thar is no chick magnet, but instead made the heads of hot blooded males turn!
The front seats have a long fore-and-aft adjustment range. No legroom issues even for those over 6 ft in height. The cushioning is adequate, though under thigh support is poor. This leads to fatigue of the right leg & foot over long drives. Back rest support is strictly average. Thankfully, the headrests are adjustable for height. The awesomely supportive seats of the erstwhile Mahindra Classic would be well-suited to the Thar.