Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M), India's leading manufacturer of utility vehicles launched its new global sport utility vehicle XUV 500 at a starting price of Rs 10.80 lakhs (ex-showroom Delhi). The company will begin bookings from Saturday. This is the first major utility vehicle launch from Mahindra after its Xylo launch.
Mahindra will position the XUV 500 between the Scorpio and the premium SUV range which comprises of the Toyota Fortuner, Chevrolet Captiva, Mitubishi Outlander, Honda CR-V and the likes. The XUV 500 will be available in both 4x2 and 4x4 variants.
The vehicle will be launched in South Africa tomorrow. "In the next six months, it will be launched in Australia, South and Central America, Western Europe and SAARC countries," M&M President (Automotive and Farm Equipment) Pawan Goenka told reporters here.
In the domestic market, it will be first available in Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai and Pune. It will be pitched against the likes of General Motors' Captiva and the Toyota Fortuner, which are priced at around Rs 19-20 lakh.
M&M Chief of Operations (Automotive Sector) Rajesh Jejurikar said the price of the XUV500 could be revised after three months, depending on commodity prices and other input costs.
Stating that the new vehicle is a reflection of the firm's ever-growing global aspirations, M&M Vice-Chairman Anand Mahindra said: "XUV500 is much more than a car. It will be another cult vehicle, as Scorpio was."
Goenka said the XUV500, on which M&M spent Rs 650 crore to develop, is the first product from its Chennai research and development centre. It will be produced at the Chakan plant.
He said the new vehicle would "redefine M&M as the Scorpio did nine years back".
While the company did not specify sales targets for the new vehicle, officials said M&M has made arrangements for an initial production capacity of 2,000 units a month.
The auto giant will manufacture the new SUV at its Chakan plant near Pune. Designed entirely at Mahindra's R&D centre in Chennai, the XUV promises a lot of firsts for Mahindra. The XUV 500 is the country's first indigenously developed monocoque SUV and also the first to offer a transverse engine layout. Since the XUV 500 is a global vehicle, it was conceived and designed with global standards of quality, technology, testing norms, regulations and emissions right from the very beginning.