The Force Gurkha is the most capable off-roader in its stock form under 10 Lakhs, however its biggest shortcoming is that the 2.6L OM616 diesel engine sourced from Mercedes is not Bharat Stage 4 (BS4) emission norms compliant.
Emission norms are set by the government to make the air a bit cleaner to breathe and they have to be adhered to by the manufacturers. Being a BS3 engine, Gurkha can not be registered in any of the metro cities as well as all the top cities of India. This significantly reduces its catchment area.
Now, there have been consistent speculations and a few official hints from the company that when the Gurkha goes on sale from next month, it will also get a BS4 compliant engine. This puts an interesting mystery surrounding the off-roader.
Will Force modify the existing 2.6L OM616 to make it compliant with the BS4 norms or take the easier way out – employ the 2.2L FMTECH diesel motor (also sourced from Mercedes) which does duty on the Force One.
The four cylinder, DOHC, 16 valve, turbocharged FM Tech mill produces 141PS of power @3800rpm and a massive 321Nm of torque @ 1600-2400rpm on the Force One and the company can always detune it on the Gurkha.
Now, comes the more interesting bit. The RFC (Rainforest Challenge) Gurkha’s were not only specially modified but also carried this 2.2L FMTECH diesel engine as confirmed by the company.
The mods on RFC Gurkha included…
- G-32/5 gearbox, a time tested 5 speed synchromesh transmission by Mercedes
- Front rigid axle
- Long travel heavy duty shock absorbers
- Hydraulic steering adapted from the Balwan Agricultural Tractors
Now, since they have already done it, aren’t these the first hints of a possible entry of the same mill on the road going Gurkha?
Wouldn’t 100+bhps and about 300Nm of torque seal the deal for you, if Gurkha ever comes along with one? The company though has so far remained silent about this, but we are hopeful…