Mahindra finally launched the 2020 Thar yesterday, and at quite a sensible price range—Rs 9.80 lakh to Rs 13.75 lakh. But you may already know that by now. In fact, right now, you probably know more about the new Thar than the entire human race knows about the theory of evolution.
Therefore, I won't bore you with redundant information. Instead, I would make this a concise reference-guide for you that you may refer to before heading towards the showroom. Apparently, (thanks to the phone calls from readers, acquaintances, friends, and even fellow auto journalists, since yesterday), there still appears to be a lot of confusion about the variants and features of the Thar. Let me clear it all for you today.
Also, please note that I did review the Thar diesel manual a while ago, and shall be bringing the review to you shortly as well. This story in the meantime will help you zero in on the right variant. And I am sure you did read our previous story on the Thar where we busted four myths about the vehicle (here it is: Fact Check: Mahindra Thar 2020)
2020 Mahindra Thar Pricelist
2020 Mahindra Thar Engine and Gearbox options
Before we lay all the features in front of you, it's very important for you to note that ALL variants get the same petrol and diesel engines, and there are just two types of gearboxes that you can have: a 6-speed manual and a 6-speed automatic. Mahindra has kept it really simple here.
For example, there's no AMT with this and DCT with that or a 5-speed manual with a turbo here and a six-speed manual with a supercharger and an icecream there. No, none of that confusion here. Just two engines, and two gearboxes. The only catch is that if you want the most powerful Thar, you will have to buy the petrol automatic as it produces the most torque among all variants.
Just to sum it up, there is no difference in power and torque between the diesel manual and diesel automatic, but when it comes to the petrol manual and petrol automatic, the former produces 300 Nm while the latter produces 320 Nm. There is no difference in the peak horsepower figure—both petrols produce 150 hp.
Still, let us mention the power and torque figures below again in a manner that gets etched into your subconscious:
Thar diesel 6-speed manual: 130 bhp at 3,750 rpm | 300 Nm at 1,600–2,800 rpm
Thar diesel 6-speed automatic: 130 bhp at 3,750 rpm | 300 Nm at 1,600–2,800 rpm
Thar petrol 6-speed manual: 150 bhp at 5,000 rpm | 300 Nm at 1,250–3,000 rpm
Thar petrol 6-speed automatic: 150 bhp at 5,000 rpm | 320 Nm at 1,500–3,000 rpm
Most importantly, all Thars are 4x4 now. There's no 4x2 option anymore. A pat on Mahindra's back for NOT giving in to something that would have diluted this outrageously capable 4WD's image.
2020 Mahindra Thar variant-wise Features and Equipment
1) Mahindra Thar AX Standard (petrol manual only): At 9.80 lakh rupees, this is the cheapest Thar you can buy and THIS is the variant I would have bought (or dreamt about it at least, considering my ever-depleting bank balance) had Mahindra not skimped on the rear MLD. Really, Mahindra?
Yes, this is the ONLY Thar variant to not get the mechanically locking differential at the rear. All other variants come with it from the factory. It does get the new electric driveline disconnect (front axle) feature like the rest of the Thar variants though. The other good news is that you may still get the MLD retrofitted for around 25 thousand rupees at the Mahindra service center itself. However, please note that this is an old price (from around 2014–2015). But I am sure it wouldn't have risen to Rs 85 thousand as you'll learn shortly below.
This variant comes as a petrol manual soft top only. There is no "AX Standard" diesel variant.
It gets LED tailights, HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning), central locking, power steering (which is adjustable for rake), power windows (yes, I was expecting manual winders, which would have been a shame in a ten-lakh-rupee car), lockable glovebox, rear parking sensors, ABS with EBD and Brake Assist, dual airbags, seatbelt reminder, snowchain provision (available only on the AX series, and NOT on the LX; you can't put snowchains on the LX variants' 18-inchers) for tyres, welded tow hooks in front and rear, tow hitch protection, manual day-night IRVM, one-touch lane change indicator, and passenger airbag deactivation switch, among a couple of other things that you may check in the brochure.
It gets side-facing seats, of course, making it a six-seater. It does not get the side footboards, which is good news for the hardcore off-roaders, but bad news for short people. I am both, and I don't mind it. I'll carry a portable ladder with me.
2) Mahindra Thar AX (petrol manual and diesel manual): For 85 thousand rupees more (the AX petrol costs Rs 10.65 lakh as you might have noticed above) you get the aforementioned MLD in addition. Wait, what? For 85 grand more? Why's that, Mahindra? Weren't you retrofitting (on customer request) the Eaton MLD back in around 2014–2015 for 25 thousand rupees approx., before it became a permanent feature in the Thar? Or is there something I am missing here? Please clarify.
I shall update this section as and when I hear from them. Okay, you do get side footboards made from tubular steel, but that's about it.
The AX diesel is for Rs. 10.85 lakh.
3) Mahindra Thar AX OPT (petrol manual and diesel manual): Now this is where things start getting more interesting. First of all, you get those front facing seats which every review has told you about, and with them you get the tip-and-slide mechanism for the front passenger seat, obviously, that grants access to the rear. The rear seats can be reclined, and they have adjustable headrests as well. Plus, they do come with a 50:50 split option. Most importantly though, the driver's seat is adjustable for height in this variant.
You also get remote keyless entry, ISOFIX child seat mounts on the rear seats, roll cage, and 3-point seat belts for rear passengers. The small catch in this variant is that while you can choose between a hardtop and convertible if you're buying the diesel, you get only the convertbile top with the petrol.
The diesel hardtop gets a demister.
The prices are as under:
Thar AX Opt petrol convertible: Rs 11.90 lakh
Thar AX Opt diesel convertible: Rs 12.10 lakh
Thar AX Opt diesel hard top: Rs 12.10 lakh
Why couldn't you give a petrol hardtop at Rs 12.00 lakh, Mahindra?
4) Mahindra Thar LX: This is where it might get confusing for a lot of people, but it shouldn't be so. I shall explain. See, initially Mahindra had decided that it won't provide the petrol manual in LX trim, and only the petrol automatic will be available alongside the diesel manual and diesel automatic.
However, after the various off-road clubs in India carried out candlelight marches all over the country, gathering painful tears of all hardcore offroaders in empty differential casings, and wrote letters in blood to Mr. Anand Mahindra (they even sealed the letters with Loctite Red) requesting him to have the petrol manual available in the LX trim as well, the magnanimous genetleman heartily obliged.
Therefore, now you may choose your Thar LX from the following combos on offer:
Petrol manual hardtop (Rs 12.49 lakh)
Petrol automatic convertible (Rs 13.45 lakh)
Petrol automatic hardtop (Rs 13.55 lakh)
Diesel manual convertible top (Rs 12.85 lakh)
Diesel manual hard top (Rs 12.95 lakh)
Diesel automatic convertible top (Rs 13.65 lakh)
Diesel automatic hard top (Rs 13.75 lakh)
Yes, they should have offered a convertible top for the petrol manual as well, and I think a few tear-soaked handkerchiefs would do the trick this time (i.e., make Mr. Mahindra melt again).
In the meantime, let me tell you the main features of the LX trim that you get in addition to everything that the AX OPT variants get:
- Brake Lock Differential (BLD)
- Steering mounted audio and phone controls
- Touchscreen infotainment system
- 18 inch alloys (as opposed to 16-inch steel rims in the AX series)
- Lumbar support
- Cruise control
- Front fog lamps
- USB charging port
- Moulded footboards- Brake Lock Differential (BLD)
And that, ladies and gentleman, is the long and short of it. Hope this guide will help you choose the right variant of the Thar according to your needs and budget. We drove the diesel manual LX hardtop a while ago, and the review shall be published soon. You may feel free to ask questions in the comments section below about things you want us to asnwer in our review.