The first unit of the 2020 Mahindra Thar went under the hammer for a noble cause, and on the final day of the auction – bids crossed the Rs 1 crore mark. The winning bid for the 2020 Mahindra Thar #1 is Rs 1.11 crore, which has come from New Delhi’s Aakash Minda.
Over 5,400 individuals had registered for the auction, and bidding started at a reserve price of Rs 25 lakh. Those interested could bid in multiples of Rs 25,000, and bids crossed the Rs 80-lakh mark on the very first day – an amount more than three times the reserve price of Thar #1. Over the next five days, bids ebbed and flowed, and the highest bid on the morning of the final day of the auction was Rs 92.50 lakh.
As the day progressed, new bids came in thick and fast, and right before the window shut at 6pm, the winning bid came from Minda. As per the process outlined by Mahindra, Minda will be asked to choose the Thar variant and colour of his choice; the Thar #1 will feature customised badging with his initials, leatherette seats and serial number 1 on the VIN plate.
Minda will have to pay part of the winning bid amount to Mahindra – for the Thar #1 – and the rest of the amount directly to one of three organisations engaged in COVID-19 relief work – Naandi Foundation, Swades Foundation and the PM CARES fund. Mahindra will also match the winning amount and donate it to one of the three organisations chosen by Minda, details of which are expected to follow soon.
Mahindra Thar 2020: Key details
The 2020 Mahindra Thar is based on a new ladder-frame chassis, and debuts two new engines. There’s a 152hp, 2.0-litre 'mStallion' petrol which gets a 6-speed manual gearbox as standard and a 6-speed automatic as an option. The diesel engine for the new Thar is a 132hp, 2.2-litre mHawk unit, which is available with a 6-speed manual as well a 6-speed torque converter automatic. Four-wheel-drive and a manual-shift transfer case are standard on all versions.
Interestingly, Mahindra has given the green signal to a 5-door version of the new Thar for production. The five-door model will be an important addition to the Mahindra Thar line-up, as its rival-in-chief, the new-gen Force Gurkha, will also be available in 3- and 5-door forms. Additionally, the Suzuki Jimny is also set to enter India in five-door form.
The new Mahindra Thar’s interior features a 7.0-inch touch-screen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, roof-mounted speakers, a colour multi-info display for the instrument cluster, steering-mounted controls and cruise control. Safety kit includes dual airbags, ABS with EBD, ISOFIX child-seat mounts, hill-start and descent assist, ESP with roll-over mitigation, and the new Thar is also said to comply with upcoming pedestrian protection norms. It will be available in two variants – AX and LX – and Mahindra says it will be even more capable off-road than its predecessor.
Expect the new Mahindra Thar’s prices to be in the Rs 12-15 lakh (ex-showroom) range when it is launched on October 2, 2020, which is also when bookings for the second-generation 4x4 will officially commence.