Mahindra KUV100 NXT Facelift Review & First Drive

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Overview

When Mahindra & Mahindra MD Dr Pawan Goenka was introducing the 2017 Mahindra KUV100 NXT compact SUV at its launch, he was quick to address the big question: Why such an early refresh for a new model launched only last year. At the time, he noted that shorter timelines are the new norm with manufacturers in India launching new vehicles in quick succession and shortening shelf lives of existing products. There is a push to capture the constantly growing sub-4m compact SUV market. At the same time, the KUV100 NXT facelift is Mahindra’s attempt to capture a market that had hitherto been buying only small cars – the first-time car buyer.You see, as diverse as its portfolio of utility and sport utility vehicles as well as the odd sedan may have been, Mahindra has never before had a vehicle for this particular customer. And the manufacturer seems to have done things right, as the original Mahindra KUV100 has attracted around 60,000 customers over the past 21 months. Of these, close to 50 per cent have been first-time car buyers, and 15 per cent women customers, Goenka had said.With a diverse, new customer base, Mahindra now looks to keep the ball rolling with the 2017 Mahindra KUV100 NXT facelift that gets 40 new features. It is also of essence for Mahindra to popularise its smallest SUV platform, which is slated to become the first Mahindra SUV to be electrfied in a year’s time. For information on contact details of Mahindra car dealers in Pune

Check for Mahindra KUV100 NXt On Road Price in Kolkata at CarzPrice

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Exteriors

While most of the design is unchanged, the Mahindra KUV100 NXT has some immediately noticeable changes. The clamshell bonnet isn’t any different from its predecessor, but the headlights, while retaining their basic shape, now feature twin pods, with restyled indicators and DRLs. The front bumper design has been updated to feature a more distinctive air dam, with the reshaped fog-lights getting body colour surrounds. Even the slender nose grille gets more distinct chrome inserts and at the bottom of the bumper, there’s a well defined silver skid plate. Also Read – KUV100 NXT Vs Grand i10 Vs Ignis: Spec ComparisonA large silver skid plate can also be found around the back, with a redesigned rear bumper that carries over the styling sensibilities of the front bumper. Extending from the roof is a new, integrated spoiler with what the company calls ‘Aero Corners’ – basically Mahindra-speak for the extended spoiler integrating smoothly down the tailgate. The tailgate too has seen a bit of a redesign, with a new crease running across the back that adds a bit more bulk. Just like with the headlights, the overall shape of the tail lights has been carried over as has their twin-pod layout. However, they get a clear-lens cover that adds a sharp touch of modernity.

Viewed bang-on from the side, the squarish, black plastic-clad wheel arches house new 15-inch dual-tone diamond-cut alloys. If you ask me, even though they’re a far sight better than the smaller 14-inch wheels that debuted on the original KUV100, these 15-inchers still look a bit disproportionate in the car’s profile, especially considering the extra musculature added by the new character line running across the bottom part of the doors. An extra bit of pizzaz that’s noticeable from the side, as well as the front actually, are turn indicators integrated into the new, electrically-operated, power-folding ORVMs.Generally speaking, while the styling formula hasn’t changed in the grander scheme of things, the KUV100 does look more attractive than before. And in the two-tone paint scheme of our test car, with its black roof, as well as A, B and C pillars, it even felt a bit evocative of the Range Rover Evoque from certain angles. Also Read – Mahindra To Launch KUV100 NXT Electric In 2019

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Interiors

Mahindra has touched on many aspects that have made the KUV100 NXT look more stylish. To begin with, the interiors are now all black. The look and feel of these plastics have seen a big improvement. The materials certain now look a lot better than before. There is a texture that does look better. Moving on to the steering wheel, it is the same but now it is black. Small and easy to grip. The instrument cluster is the same too. Made up of twin dials and it has only two tripmeters on it. There isn’t anything different on it. Mahindra KUV100 NXT rear seatThe centre console is where the major change has been made. This now has a 7-inch touchscreen system. It is smooth and responsive. This thing gets driver information system like mileage, distance to empty and reverse parking sensors. New AC controls have been added too. This makes it look better and more aesthetic. The seat fabric has seen an upgrade too. the quality feels much better.

Moving on to the space, there is more than sufficient space for two in the front and three at the back. There is ample of knee room and head room for the rear passengers. The front seats can be used for 3 people, but the third passenger will find it tight. But the middle seat can be converted into an arm rest and what a lovely arm rest it is to have. In terms of storage, 1-litre bottles can fit easily in the front and rear rows, there is an under-tray storage in the co-driver’s seat. The rear seating central tunnel is flat. This even has storage underneath it. The boot isn’t very large, and even the access to it is poor.

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Performance

The engines offered on the Mahindra KUV100 NXT are the same as before. You get a 1.2-litre petrol engine producing 82 HP of power and 112 Nm of torque mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. The diesel engine is also a 1.2-litre unit maxing out at 77 HP of power and 190 Nm of torque. The oil burner too gets a manual gearbox but Mahindra will start offering an AMT next year onwards. The car that we got for testing was the diesel variant. The engine is smooth and NVH levels have also definitely improved and the cabin feels pretty silent. The engine noise can be heard in the cabin only at high RPMs.The diesel motor also offers pretty good driveability and makes the KUV fairly easy to drive around. Power is adequate for normal city and highway runs and a regular driver won’t really complain. The KUV also gets a Power mode but it doesn’t make a very big difference to the way it drives. Fuel efficiency from the diesel engine is good and in the city you can expect 16-17 km/l while on the highways expect that figure to touch 19 km/l too. The clutch is very light and the 5-speed manual gearbox is matched nicely to the engine and it is also pretty slick.

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Driving

Now, the suspension of the Mahindra KUV100 NXT is well-suited to our roads and the ride quality at low speeds is comfortable enough but as the speeds increase, there is a lot of vertical movement for passengers and it gets pretty annoying. The steering feels heavy and doesn’t really inspire confidence at high speeds. Even on the handling front, the KUV100 hates being driven aggressively and is more suited to cruising. The brakes felt very spongy and the feeling is very scary when you stomp the brake pedal at high speeds because there is just no confidence. Mahindra has also improved the approach and departure angles of the car, meaning you can tackle bad roads easily. However, don’t expect the KUV100 to tackle hard-core off-roads.

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Safety

Braking system is formed by the ventilated disc brakes in the front and drum brakes in the rear. Other vital braking features inset to support the brakes affixed in front and back comprise of anti-lock-braking system along with electronic brake force distribution, which is standard across all variants. Standard safety features on board are automatic door lock, central door locking, and door open indicator. Other safety features available on the SUV are child safety locks on rear doors, anti-slip clips for driver side door mats, ISOFIX child seat mount on rear seat, engine immobiliser, anti-theft security alarm, and dual airbags are available is available on all the plus variants along with the range topping variant.

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Price

Mahindra Kuv100 Nxt Ex-Showroom Price in Chennai ranges from 4,41,654/- (KUV100 NXT K2 Petrol) to 7,42,886/- (KUV100 NXT K8 Dual Tone Diesel). Get best offers for Mahindra Kuv100 Nxt from Mahindra Dealers in Chennai. Check for KUV100 NXT price in Chennai

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Bottomline

The Mahindra KUV100 NXT feels like a very confused product in the segment it is positioned in. While it is definitely practical and easy to drive, which our folks will appreciate, the styling is quirky even now and the driving dynamics of the car are nothing to write about. Mahindra is positioning this as a compact SUV but we all know that it sure isn’t one. Competing with some of the top-selling cars in India, the KUV100 NXT faces some tough rivalry and the only reasons why you should consider one are the 6-seater configuration (albeit not too comfortable) and the easy-to-drive nature.