New Mahindra Thar
New Mahindra TharPR handout

Off road enthusiasts rejoice. According to the latest reports, Mahindra engineers are currently working on an all-new Thar, which is expected to debut in 2018. The biggest addition would be an all new 1.5-litre mHawk engine.

According to a MotorOctane report, the new Thar will be a complete departure from the existing vehicle. The new model is expected to get an all-new advanced ladder frame platform, not a monocoque shell. The new engine, the 1.5-litre mHawk, is expected to deliver over 100bhp. The current Thar has been sold with 2.5-litre CRDe engine that develops 104bhp and 247Nm of torque mated to five-speed manual transmission. The downsizing of the engine for a new model is targeted at meeting the upcoming emission norms and also delivering better fuel efficiency.

Being a full blown 4x4 mahcine, the new Thar is expected to get latest technologies that will aid in off-roading. The dual front airbags and ABS can be expected as standard. It remains to be seen how Mahindra is going to update the exterior of Thar. The current silhouette is much appreciated by the off-road enthusiasts and updating without disappointing them will be a big task for Mahindra designers.

Mahindra & Mahindra launched Thar as the success of MM540 in 2010. The affordability and customisation friendly aspect of Thar made it a default choice for the new as well as expert off-road junkies. The company had given a mild update to the vehicle last year with a contemporary dashboard and new seats, while the exterior largely remained unchanged barring tweaks in from bumper.