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Mahindra TUV300 Review: Pros and Cons

Introduction

Mahindra TUV300 Left Front Three Quarter

This is the facelift of the Mahindra TUV300. Or at least that’s what Mahindra would like us to believe. So, it gets a blacked out grille, headlamps with day time running lamps, a clear lens tail lamp at the rear along with a new spare wheel cover, and some cladding on the side. While on the inside, there are some silver highlights. And as added equipment in this top spec version, you get a reversing camera. 

So clearly, the changes aren’t too dramatic. Which begs the question - what about TUV300 as a product? Especially today when you have so many sub-four meter SUVs to choose from? Well, here’s a list of things that we like and a couple that we don’t, which truly define it as a product. And as for the Mahindra TUV300's pricing, this one here, the T10, retails for around 12 Lakhs on the road.  

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Positives

1 - Interior Space 

Mahindra TUV300 Rear Seat Space

The TUV is one of the few sub-four metre SUVs that can actually seat three abreast at the back without the occupants having to smell each other’s armpits! Even at the front, there’s so much space between the driver and the co-driver that we’d recommend the TUV if you fight with your spouse often. And of course, there’s enough and more headroom in here to stretch even! 

Mahindra TUV300 Rear Seat Space

The boot too is decently sized. Now, the side opening door isn’t the most practical, and neither is the high loading lip height. But, get past the two, and you can stuff a lot of luggage in there. 

2 - Cabin Comfort  

Mahindra TUV300 Front-Seats

Firstly, for a diesel, the NVH on the TUV isn’t half bad. It also has comfy seats. These are big - be it the captain fronts or the bench rear - and these offer good thigh and back support as well. But yes, the seats could do with a bit more contouring.  

The TUV doesn’t move around on the go too much either. Show it broken roads, bumpy roads, or no roads at all, and it would rarely send a rude shock down any of its occupants’ spine. If ever. It does jiggle a bit over bad roads, like most ladder frame SUVs do, but one can easily live with it. 

Mahindra TUV300 Action

This, the top spec TUV300, retails for around Rs 12.3 lakhs in Mumbai. And for this money you get a detailed driver information system with a gear indicator. You also get a touchscreen multimedia system. There’s height adjust for the driver. The outside rear view mirrors are electrically powered. And there’s a whole array of cup and bottle holders, and stowage options as well. 

3 - All round Visibility 

Mahindra TUV300 Dashboard

The TUV has great visibility. The large glass area helps. But, it also has a relatively thin A-pillar. Plus with the high seating, the short dashboard, and the squarish but well defined edges, it is very easy to place the TUV in traffic making it quite easy to drive even in chock-o-block traffic. 

You also get these huge rear view mirrors, and now there’s a reversing camera to compensate for the high rear windshield and the tail gate mounted spare. 

4 - Diesel powertrain 

Mahindra TUV300 Engine Bay

One of the biggest highlights for me when it comes to the TUV300, is its engine. It is different from the one that powers the XUV300. This one is a 1.5litre diesel as well. But, it has three cylinders instead of four. And it makes 100bhp. But more importantly, it produces 240Nm of peak torque from 1600rpm. But it doesn’t seem to have any turbolag! We are in first gear, nowhere near the throttle. And the TUV just picks up its weight and begins motoring effortlessly. And it will chug along off the throttle as long as you like. 

Mahindra TUV300 Action

But here’s the beauty of it. We are under 1000rpm, but the moment I get on the throttle, the TUV takes off like it heard a gun go off! This torque and this pull at lower rpm makes the TUV300 a very likeable SUV, be it in the city or on a dirt trail. And did we mention it had a light clutch action? Well, it does. 

5 - Go Anywhere 

Mahindra TUV300 Right Front Three Quarter

A body-on-ladder frame has its shortcomings - weight and refinement. We will talk about that next. But, this construction also brings ruggedness into the mix.  And with a rear wheel drive setup, the TUV can in fact tread where other two wheel drive compact SUVs might struggle. Off road or no road are two situations that come to mind.

Negatives

1. Driving Dynamics 

Mahindra TUV300 left rear three quarter

The TUV is a body-on-ladder SUV. So, it’s tall and it’s heavy compared to other sub-four meter SUVs. And it has a slow steering rack. Not surprising then, around a twisty road, it rolls, and its handling isn’t exactly point and shoot precise. It has to be nursed into a corner while it settles under its weight. 

But for all its lack of handling prowess, it does have the ability to smother everything on the road. We won’t call the ride pliant, but it does beat the road into submission.   

2. Last row seating 

Mahindra TUV300 Rear Seat Space

Difficult to get into. No thigh support to speak of. And if you bring in another adult into the scene, well things get uncomfortably close. But most of all, there are no seat belts. So for means and purposes, at least for us, the TUV is only a five-seater.

Conclusion

Mahindra TUV300 Front Grille

There you have it. The facelifted TUV300, and the things we like and some we don’t, about this rugged, almost go-anywhere, surprisingly easy to drive SUV.

Pictures by - Kaustubh Gandhi

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Mahindra TUV300 Price in India

CityOn-Road Prices
Mumbai₹ 10.1 Lakhs onwards
Bangalore₹ 10.37 Lakhs onwards
New Delhi₹ 9.92 Lakhs onwards
Pune₹ 10.08 Lakhs onwards
Hyderabad₹ 10.11 Lakhs onwards
Ahmedabad₹ 9.57 Lakhs onwards
Chennai₹ 10.03 Lakhs onwards
Kolkata₹ 9.6 Lakhs onwards
Chandigarh₹ 9.57 Lakhs onwards
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