One of our readers Kishore Kishi has spotted the heavily camouflaged Mahindra S101 being tested in Chennai at Tambaram main road. The company seems to testing the car vigorously and that can only be good news for prospective customers.
From the rear three-quarters it looks like a hatchback on steroids and it’s from the front that the S101 looks very purposeful, and this is with the veil still on – that XUV 500 front-end is sharp enough to draw attention and butch enough to make those pesky auto-rickshaws keep distance.
While everything seems to be perfect with the vehicle’s face, the rear still carries an excuse of a taillight assembly. No points for guessing it is a dummy assembly and the production unit will be different and more sense making. Apart from what we already know, this S101 mule gives us a sneaking peek into the chrome surrounded left side fog lamp, which appears to be, again, similar to XUV500.
For starters, the S101 (codename) would be a sub four-meter car and Mahindra will take the excise duty benefits with both the petrol and diesel variants of the compact SUV. The company will plonk Quanto’s 1.5-litre common rail diesel engine on the S101 which is good for 100PS at 3,750 rpm and a torque of 240 Nm, which should make this comparatively lighter vehicle quick to drive.
According to recent reports, there is a new 1.2-litre petrol engine which is currently under development and Mahindra would not want to miss the opportunity to position the petrol S101 against the EcoSport petrol 1.5, but at a significantly lower price.
So, if Mahindra can get the pricing right for the newest compact SUV on Indian roads (which is expected), it surely would worry a lot of premium hatches too, and not just the much-in-demand EcoSport. Launch is scheduled for next year.