Video Road Report
2017 Mahindra XUV500 - Video Road Report

We video test the 2017 Mahindra XUV500, “And it is particularly impressive, offering a wealth of features and technology, with its chiseled and sculpted lines catching the eye”

While it is not a hugely well known marque in New Zealand, Indian manufacturer Mahindra makes half a million cars per year (so about the same as fellow Indian carmaker Jaguar Land Rover) and is a pretty big player in its home country, with a 40 per cent market share, while parent company, Mahindra & Mahindra, is a US$17 billion corporation that also owns a controlling interest in Korean brand SsangYong, as well as owning Peugeot Scooters and recently acquiring iconic Italian design house Pininfarina.

Mahindra has had a presence in New Zealand for a number of years now, with its rugged farm and off road vehicles, but the company now also has a player in the exploding SUV segment - the XUV500.

While the XUV500 has been available locally for a while, it was only in diesel form with a manual transmission. But now the medium SUV has been completely overhauled, making it better than ever. Chiseled and sculpted lines catch the eye, further enhanced with sleek chrome accents and stylish new alloy wheels.

But the big news is under the bonnet, with a new 103kW/330Nm 2.2-litre turbo diesel four-cylinder engine made by Austrian company AVL, matched to a Japanese Aisin six-speed automatic (the same unit used in the SsangYong Tivoli), making the XUV500 far more compatible with Kiwi family’s tastes in SUVs.

Alloy wheels are standard, as is leather upholstery, an 8-way adjustable driver’s seat, a seven-inch colour touch screen with pinch-and-zoom satellite navigation, Bluetooth hands free and audio streaming, a reversing camera with dynamic guidelines for parallel and angled parking assistance, foldable second and third-row seats, LED interior lights and mood lighting, dusk sensing Xenon headlamps with cornering lights, rain sensing wipers, power adjustable and folding wing mirrors, and wireless tyre-pressure monitoring on all wheels, including the spare,  steering wheel mounted controls for cruise control, audio and voice commands and a full compliment of safety electronics and airbags.

The XUV500 is particularly impressive for offering all of that at a rather remarkable price, with the 4WD model we look at here costing just $39,990.

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