Mahindra KUV100 NXT Facelift Review & Performance

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Overview

Mahindra & Mahindra has been known to be a maker of robust and rugged passenger vehicles, since a long time. However, with the advent of the compact crossover/SUV market and its subsequent fame among the Indian consumers, it is obvious that Mahindra also had its own offering/s in the segment. Mahindra KUV100 marks Mahindra’s entry into the lower spectrum of the compact SUV segment. With dimensions in-lined with crop of premium hatchback the Mahindra KUV100 brings compact SUV design language to lure customers into the Mahindra’s fold. Mahindra KUV100 NXT in Tryaldrive.

 Check for Mahindra KUV100 NXT On Road Price in New Delhi

Coming in with a contemporary take on tallboy masculine hatchback design, the Mahindra KUV100 is shorter than 4 metres in length, thereby utilizing the excise duty benefits, yet staying true to traditional flow lines of Mahindra. Mahindra KUV100 is flamboyant and has a striking design for the segment with its huge wraparound headlamps combined with a rather sleek grille that a neat Mahindra & Mahindra logo. From exterior styling to cosy interiors and stuffed cabins, Mahindra KUV100 have it all. With the KUV100, Mahindra believes it has created a comparatively more muscular and stylish compact crossover in this new segment. Looking at the design the Mahindra KUV100 will entice a lot of the younger breed of customers. Thereby, furthering Mahindra & Mahindra’s reach into younger India consumer.

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Exterior

The KUV100 which stands for Kool Utility Vehicle One Double-Oh was originally launched in January 2016 and had good exterior styling to begin with. However, where it was left wanting a little was detail that can grab attention from all quarters. On the KUV100 NXT this comes in the form of a sporty, more muscular look. Up front is now a more aggressive grille that also extends lower with its incisor-like chrome slats. This remedies the plain looking top half of the older KUV100 bumper. The NXT bumper now has a more resolved look, thanks to the honeycomb-pattern black grille surrounded by more pronounced fog lamp bezels in body colour. At the bottom of the front and rear bumpers is a silver faux bash plate.

The sunglass-style wraparound headlamps get the house treatment too, with dual chambers for the low and high beam units. The stem of the left headlamp features KUV100 NXT badging, while the right sports mFalcon badging. Red highlights from the older KUV100 have now been replaced with chrome details. Move to the side, and the KUV100 NXT has a more visually-balanced look than its predecessor with the front bumper extension reduced, and the rear extended a tad bit. This change results in the KUV100 NXT gaining 25mm in length over the older KUV100 at 3,700mm.

Thicker plastic cladding runs around the flared wheel arches and the bottom edge of the NXT, which also gets new 15-inch two-tone diamond cut alloy wheels. Three new two-tone colour options feature a black roof and pillars, in keeping with which the C-pillar mounted rear door handle is now black to enhance the two-door look.The electrically-adjustable rear-view mirrors now also sport integrated side indicators. Move to the rear, and the clear lens double-barrel LED taillamps are the first thing to catch your eye. The new roof mounted spoiler also wraps around the rear windshield better. The NXT ‘evoques’ the feeling of larger international offerings now, especially from the side, albeit in a pocket-friendly size.

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Interior

Mahindra offers the KUV100 NXT with two interior themes. The K2, K4 and K6 variants get a grey-themed interior while the top K8 trim gets an all-black interior. There are subtle tweaks to the cabin as well. There is a new 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with navigation only while Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are still missed. The climate control buttons have been minimised from three to one. The top trim gets piano black and silver inserts in the cabin. The feature list is quite long too and you get steering-mounted audio controls, front and rear armrests with cupholders, cooled glove box, mood lighting, puddle lamps, height adjustable driver’s seat and driving modes. However, a rear camera is still missing. The touchscreen that you see here is borrowed from the TUV300 and is smooth to use but sound quality from the speakers is pretty average. For more info on Mahindra KUV100 NXT check

The climate control button needs effort to operate, while the pull-type handbrake lever is placed below the dashboard. Where the KUV100 really excels is practicality. There are more than enough cupholders and storage spaces inside the cabin and even the seats are fairly comfortable. If you’re really thinking of shoving in 6 people in the car then you might be in for an unpleasant surprise because there is barely any knee room or shoulder space at the front for the middle passenger and things get really uncomfortable. The backrest of the middle seat makes for a very large and comfy armrest though. The AC cools the cabin very quickly but is also a bit noisy. The vehicle gets a 243-litre boot (expandable up to 473-litres when the rear seats are folded) and can hardly fit in a weekend’s luggage of 2-3 people.

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Gearbox

The KUV100 NXT has the same underpinnings as its predecessor, and we have had good things to say about the monocoque’s limited body roll despite its height, compared to small cars. The NXT features slightly retuned versions of the mFalcon 1.2-litre three-cylinder G80 petrol engine which produces 83PS/115Nm and D75 diesel engine which outputs 78PS/190NM from the earlier KUV100. At the small straights on the Mahindra test track, the NXT stayed stable at speeds up to 135kmph, and it will go beyond that but we will have to wait until we bring it in for a detailed road test to find out. With the micro-hybrid electronic start-stop system, the engine will turn off when placed in neutral for a short time, and restart when the clutch is engaged.

The system works well and will give a 3 to 4 per cent boost to fuel efficiency, which stands at 23kmpl for the diesel and 17.45kmpl for the petrol (ARAI tested). With the D75 diesel motor on the top-spec K8 variant, throttle response feels direct in the switchable Sport mode, while the Eco mode slows it down a fair bit and limits the engine RPM in each of the five gears. The reach to the console mounted joystick-style gear lever is easy. Always staying within view, this lever should prove useful, especially for new drivers while constantly shifting gears in traffic conditions. With the centre seat folded into an armrest, driving through traffic will be less of a chore.

The steering wheel now feels a notch lighter to use at low speeds and does weigh in well as speed increases. However, some vagueness in feel sets in at speeds above 105kmph. That said, the small size makes it a breeze to turn the NXT and U-turns in tight spots will not be a bother at all. Braking with ABS as standard fitment is rapid from speeds in excess of 80kmpkh and the Mahindra feels composed through it. Some more feedback from the pedal would be welcome.

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 Cost in Pune

Mahindra Kuv100 Nxt On-Road Price in Pune ranges from 4,96,863 to 8,50,721 for variants KUV100 NXT K2 Petrol and KUV100 NXT K8 Dual Tone Diesel respectively. Mahindra Kuv100 Nxt is available in 12 variants and 6 colours. Below are details of Mahindra Kuv100 Nxt variants price in Pune. Check for KUV100 NXT price in Pune at Carzprice.

Mahindra KUV100 NXT Conclusion

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.