Mahindra debuted its electric present in Chennai with the long-awaited Mahindra XUV400 EV after a big-bang demonstration of its electrical future in the UK last month. For the business, it’s important for a number of reasons. First of all, it’s the first electric SUV produced by the firm, which over the past three years has narrowed its focus to only the SUV market. The XUV400 is finally the company’s attempt to walk the walk after years of talking electric and even taking an early lead in the EV market (with the Reva), which it swiftly lost. However, because Tata Motors has accelerated significantly in the EV race, catching up to them is no longer a walk but rather a sprint.
Can Mahindra’s tardy EV stop Tata Motors’ almost unchallenged dream run against the Nexon EV, the market’s best-selling EV today, which the Mahindra XUV400 EV directly competes against?
Exterior of the Mahindra XUV400 EV
The Nexon EV is built on the Nexon with an IC engine, just like the Mahindra XUV400 EV is not a “born electric” EV and is based on the XUV300. However, the XUV400 has one trick up its sleeve: size. The XUV300 is descended from the SsangYong Tivoli and was substantially shrunk to under 4 meters in length to benefit from the lower tax for the category, in contrast to the Nexon, which was originally intended as a sub-4m small SUV. With the Mahindra XUV400 EV, Mahindra deftly returned to the Tivoli’s original 4.2m length because there was no advantage to being shorter than 4 meters (all EVs are subject to a flat 5 percent GST).
The XUV400’s truncated rear contrasts with the improved proportions and more balanced appearance of the XUV300. The XUV400 now features a completely new tailgate, while the XUV300’s shape and taillight cluster are identical, and that’s not always a bad thing.
The Mahindra XUV400 EV shares the same doors, windows, and bonnet as the Mahindra XUV300, which gives it a similar strong aspect. Aside from the rear portion, the two vehicles are quite similar to one another. The Mahindra XUV400, on the other hand, is effectively distinguished as an EV thanks to a revised bumper, a blanked-out grille, and an excess of accents in copper. The business claims that copper is the signature color for its EVs, and it is used for the emblems, badging, and highlights on the grille and bumpers.
Interior of the XUV400
The interior features copper accents throughout, including the gear lever surrounding air vents, and rotary knobs for the air conditioning and volume. Of course, the steering wheel’s “twin-peaks” insignia is also coated in copper. Although a little over the top and a little “blingy,” it emphasizes that this is a Mahindra EV. The majority of the cabin falls short of that, and it is a pure XUV300. With a modest 7.0-inch infotainment screen, analog dials (with a new skin for the EV edition), vintage buttons, and knobs, you get a dash that looks fairly ancient.
The Mahindra XUV400’s infotainment system is a step back from the cutting-edge systems seen in the Mahindra XUV700 and Scorpio, with subpar visuals and a screen that reflects a lot of light, just like the instrument cluster.
Mahindra has cleverly elevated the floor only underneath the center console and the center passenger portion to make room for the battery, leaving the exterior ends of the cabin mostly unaffected. As a result, unlike in other EVs where the floor is higher, your posture when sitting is not impacted. Although the Mahindra XUV400 EV cabin is rather comfortable overall, however, miss having rear air conditioning vents on this scorching hot day outside of Chennai.
Power and Performance of XUV400
When it comes to the Mahindra XUV400’s electric drivetrain, Mahindra has specified it rather favorably. The front wheels are propelled by a solitary electric motor with a competitive 150 horsepower and 310 Nm of torque. Power is provided by a 39.4 kWh battery, which the manufacturer claims have a 456 km range in the official test cycle.
The older version (5.3.2) chemistry of the NMC battery pack, which Mahindra engineers had to balance between power and range, was acquired from LG Chem in Korea. The Mahindra XUV400 has three drive settings that are cheesily referred to as Fun, Fast, and Fearless. For each setting, the instrument cluster changes color. Start with Fearless, which is the most aggressive and challenging to drive because it lacks traction control.
Fearless mode offers excellent straight-line performance, and in a challenging acceleration test, designers were able to accelerate to 100 kph in 8.7 seconds, beating the Nexon EV Max by 0.7 seconds (9.4sec). Despite its fairly hefty 1,578kg kerb weight, the XUV400 managed to reach 160kph on the high-speed track and Mahindra’s testing facility, making it the fastest SUV in its class once more. ‘
The major issue for Mahindra has been to carefully balance speed and range, particularly with the NMC532 battery pack, which lacks the energy efficiency of more contemporary chemistries. The weight penalty is expected to be noticed more in range.
Price of the Mahindra XUV400 EV
We anticipate that the Mahindra XUV400 EV will cost between Rs 17 and Rs 22 lakh, which should be comparable to the Nexon EV, but will Mahindra pull off a surprise? All we can do is wait and observe.