2011 ET ZigWheels Car of the Year: MAHINDRA XUV5OO

With the XUV500 Mahindra has moved away from its Jeep-inspired lineage but kept its tough-as-nails DNA intact

Mahindra XUV 500

The most talked about vehicle over the past year, even prior to its launch was Mahindra’s socalled global SUV which as everyone now knows manifested itself as the XUV500.

The term global SUV is a misnomer for this is a vehicle which blurs the distinction between saloon, SUV or soft-roader and also MPV while being right on the ball as regards design and build, mechanicals and packaging, ride and handling, performance and fuel efficiency.

However, what is important is that all these attributes which we mention are always a given for any decent car maker offering an all-new product.

But for Mahindra & Mahindra it was also a mighty challenge to move into mainstream automotive manufacturing courtesy the XUV500 breaking new ground as the firm’s first all-monocoque offering, the first Mahindra with a transverse engine layout driving the front wheels (of course an all-wheel drive offering is also part of the range) via a six-speed transaxle, again a first for the venerable jeep maker.