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Old 27th February 2012, 22:40   #1
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Default The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!

Now that I have had my Thar DI for about 6 months and done 10,000 kilometers, I think it is time to give an objective update of the Thar DI 4x4. Firs thing that comes to you mind is how Mahindra has given some good stuff but also scrimped on some very basic features like adjustable seats, radiator fan shroud etc.... The front windshield also leaks badly in rain and water flows down on the inside of the glass making it difficult to drive. I opened up the winshield and put a layer of silicon sealant between the frame and the rubber beading of the windshield and this has made it a lot better.

First let me list out the negatives of the Thar DI.

Interiors are as expected very spartan. The OEM Seats pretty bad. You basically need to drill new holes and move the seats further back to get a decent seating position. The driver seats has only very limited fore and aft adjustment without any recline feature. Once you drill new holes in the frame and move it back, the seating position is acceptable. The passenger seat has absolutely no adjustments. I don't think you can really blame CMVR or ARAI for this one since the Tata ACE I drove had better seats, and presumably the ACE is lower on CMVRs pecking order than a Thar DI. For certain thing you can blame CMVR/ARAI, but but for some of this nonsense there is no one but Mahindra bean counters to blame..

The instrument console is so basic, that the speed lacks the decimal and there is no trip meter. Strangely these features are available even in the Bolero Pick up.

Thanks to fellow team-bhpian Rajith, I was able to get a set of Thar CRDe seats and replaced the OEM seats with the CRDe seats so seating is fine now. The left steering offset still exists for the but I have shifted the seats as far left as i can go to minimize this issue.

AC Installation:
If the Thar CRDe was sold as "AC Ready", the Thar DI is "NOT AT ALL AC READY". There is some fundamental issues with installing AC in Thar DI. Not to say it can't be done, but installation is somewhat Jugaad. There are some mechanical changes you need to make to install AC. The compressor clamp has to be installed on the timing cover on the engine. This is the only place to install the ac compressor without messing the OEM Turbo plumbing. To accomodate the AC compressor the diesel/filter pump assembly installed on the passenger side fender has to be relocated. The bottom radiator hose also has to be altered to allow prevent fouling with the AC belt. The engine crank pulley has to be changed to a two slot pulley if you are planning only ac or a three slot pulley if you are planning ac and power steering. There are more problems on the inside as well as there is limited space to put the three vent Unicla blower. Once you leave space for the 4WD lever, the blower comes half way into the passenger foot well and the passenger has to sit with both his knees pointed to the left. I will post some pics below that show the issues with installing the blower. Basically I am try to use a smaller blower from a Tata Indica or something and put some vents on the dash for the AC blower.

3.73 Final Drive ratio.
The Thar DI comes with a final drive/axle ratio of 3.73. This is too tall a ratio for wheezy 63 bhp engine. You cannot use the 5th gear at all below 80 kmph. If you engage 5th gear below 80 kmph the vehicle starts vibrating and engine has no grunt. Sanjay changed his final drive to 44/9(4.88) and his jeep is a torque monster but top speed has been decreased to about 80 kmph, but hsi vehicle is become a Torque Monster and first gear will hold the vehicle almost still on the steepest slope. But if you want an overall balanced torque/speed then 47/11 (4.27) is the way to go. I have done this and I am happy with the performance. First gear has enough grunt and I was able to achive a top speed of about 108 on the GPS. Upto 100 the engine does fine, beyone 100 it is a struggle to go higher and can be done only if you have a long enough stretch.

The canvas on the Thar DI is a very poor fit and flaps like crazy. It is the worst thing about the jeep and at high speeds it makes such a racket that can drive you nuts. As I am working on a hard top, I have temporary shoved in some cardboard between the frame an the canvas to make it silent. It looks ugly as hell, but works very well for now.

Engine noise is definitely on the louder and at idle it makes a racket but gets better as you pick up speed. In 5th gear at about 80 to 90 kmph, the engine sound is manageable. I have added some sound/heat insulation from Wurth and it has helped to a great extend.

The wheel base of the Thar DI is taken from the Major and has a 51 inch track. The turning radius is horrible and you cannot take a U Turn in most places. I added 1 inch spacers and some offset alloys and now have a 55 inch track so it is much more drivable in the city now.

Fuel guage shakes like hell. It keeps oscillation between one en to the other and you really need to stop the vehicle to find out how much fuel is left.

The OEM NDMS tires are pretty much useless on and off the road. On the road, they make a racket and when you brake it makes your jeep skid dangerously all over the road. A few times when I took it off the road with NDMS, they are narrow like a blade and kept cutting through the mud without providing traction to move the jeep. In my experience NDMS will work only in rocky terrain and maybe slush, but it will not work on mud.

The paint quality and body is very bad and I am almost certain that I will have to repaint this vehicle in about two years time.

Now that I have gotten the grips out of the way, let me discuss the positives about this vehicle.

The Chasis, power train, and suspension are tough as nails. It has been proven on picks for many years and nothing can really break this vehicle. The handling with NGCS and wide leaf springs is awsome and you can take turns confidently upto 90 kmph. I go up and down the hills like I am driving a car. Once you go NGCS, there is no going back...


So the million dollar question is should you the Thar DI instead of the Thar CRDe. The simple answer from a jeeper who has owned and driven almost all jeeps made by Mahindra is a resounding NO. Pick the Thar CRDe and get the DI only if you can check the most of boxes below

___ You cannot afford the CRDe Thar.
___ You plan to use it 80% off road and 20% on road.
___ You have the knowledge, resources and patience to alter the diff ratio, seats, tyres, etc.
___ You use your vehicle for work to carry load/workers etc..

If you look at the On road price of the DI and CRDe AC there is almost 2 Lakh difference on the road, but when you look the extras the CRDe provides, it is well worth the difference.

I bought the Thar DI because of my profession. I needed a vehicle that can carry me, material and labour to the estates and to construction sites without worry about IFS etc... Besides, I have a Scorpio 4WD which I use for my Touring.
Attached Thumbnails
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Last edited by Aditya : 28th September 2016 at 06:53. Reason: Typo
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Old 27th February 2012, 23:09   #2
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Default Re: My First New Jeep - The Mahindra Thar DI Finally

Heartiest congratulations 4x4addict. Upholstery job would be better done by replacing the seats with better ones. Just upholstery bolstering might not help. Also get the front seats adjusted a little backwards because seat travel is very limited. If you could, remove the tool box from underneath the drivers seat, this frees up lot of space.

Brings me to the important question, when is this getting an A.C. or is there room for it or you don't want one?
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Old 28th February 2012, 08:50   #3
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Congrats 4x4Addict.
What is the manufacturing year on your jeep? Is it of 2012?

What are the changes you will be doing in it? A/C possibility?
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Old 28th February 2012, 09:20   #4
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Default Re: My First New Jeep - The Mahindra Thar DI Finally

Congrats 4x4 addict. Good to see people starting from a new Thar MDI. Perfect platform for building on instead of spending lacs of rupees trying to get old junk from the army to meet your needs
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Old 28th February 2012, 21:00   #5
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Default Re: My First New Jeep - The Mahindra Thar DI Finally

Thanks guys.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AWD View Post
Heartiest congratulations 4x4addict. Just upholstery bolstering might not help.

Brings me to the important question, when is this getting an A.C. or is there room for it or you don't want one?

I meant getting new seats, not just upholstering it. I happened to get a set of bucket seats from the Thar CRDe, which I will be installing later. The box under the seat needs to be removed. I will be getting this done shortly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by offroad_maniac View Post
Congrats 4x4Addict.
What is the manufacturing year on your jeep? Is it of 2012?
Yes, 2012 Manufactured.

Quote:
Originally Posted by offroad_maniac View Post
What are the changes you will be doing in it? A/C possibility?
Immediately the following changes:

1) Spacers with 160 PCD negative offset alloys and 235/75/15 MT or AT Tires. Stock turning radius is pathetic with the 51 inch track. After getting used to a 550 with 57 inch Track I cannot use this as it is.

2) AC

3) Seats

4) Concealed Hard Top with canvas over it it to give it a soft top look.


Quote:
Originally Posted by DKG View Post
Congrats 4x4 addict. Good to see people starting from a new Thar MDI. Perfect platform for building on instead of spending lacs of rupees trying to get old junk from the army to meet your needs
Thanks DKG. Thar DI is fine for mixed use. I am planning to get an ex-army NGCS to build up as a pure off-roader. I have driven both and feel that the ex-army NGCS MM550 makes a better off-roader for a number of reasons.


Adding a few more pics.
Attached Thumbnails
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The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!-thardi-012.jpg  

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The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!-thardi-019.jpg  

The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!-thardi-021.jpg  

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Old 28th February 2012, 21:06   #6
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Default Re: My First New Jeep - The Mahindra Thar DI Finally

Adding some more pics. Please not that I am not showing off my vehicle, but Thar DI 4x4 is a rare animal and just adding pics for the benefit of people who live in BSIV cities who do not have access to info on Thar DI 4x4.
Attached Thumbnails
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The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!-thardi-030.jpg  

The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!-thardi-031.jpg  

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Old 28th February 2012, 21:12   #7
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Default Moving Thar DI Driving Seats back by 2 inches

The Thar DI driving seat is horrendous in the original position. An easy way to get two inches of leg room is to remove the sliding channel under the seat and move the seat back two inches. There are two additional holes for this that come from the factory. See attached pics for it.
Attached Thumbnails
The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!-thardi-034.jpg  

The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!-thardi-035.jpg  

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Old 29th February 2012, 19:23   #8
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Default Re: My First New Jeep - The Mahindra Thar DI Finally

Congratulations 4x4 addict.Looking forward to your impressions and experiences with the Thar DI.Thanks for the posts and hope you will continue to contribute your experiences with the Thar DI.
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Old 1st March 2012, 09:22   #9
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Default re: The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!

Congrats Tini, looking forward to your mod projects.
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Old 1st March 2012, 09:34   #10
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Default re: The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!

Congrats Sir. I have begun to love the DI 4x4 after seeing it perform over the last few OTR's. It does most obstacles effortlessly. Of course, the tyres would need to go, and you could perhaps replace the Dash with a Bolero Dash. I actually like it waaaaay more than the CRDe, and think this is right way to Thar!
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Old 1st March 2012, 09:38   #11
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Default re: The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!

Congratulations Tini. Looks simple and nice.
I am very sure that this shall be a very informative thread for all the DI owners.
Looking forward to seeing how your Thar DI transforms.
Cheers,
Deepak
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Old 1st March 2012, 10:20   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4x4addict View Post
Adding some more pics. Please not that I am not showing off my vehicle, but Thar DI 4x4 is a rare animal and just adding pics for the benefit of people who live in BSIV cities who do not have access to info on Thar DI 4x4.
Hi Tini,

Please do SHOW-OFF your vehicle, its always a treat to checkout a new JEEP.

Regards,

Arka
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Old 1st March 2012, 12:24   #13
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Default re: The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!

Congratulations, its clean looking beast you bought. Surprisingly the engine bay looks neat and well laid out, surely an effect of well thought after design and execution. The Mahindras that we have kept in the past never looked so nicely put together, and this was some 15 years ago. Surely Mahindra has come a long way.
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Old 14th September 2012, 20:33   #14
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Default Re: The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!

Mods note: Thread moved to 4x4 Vehicles section from Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 14th September 2012, 22:39   #15
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Default Re: The Mahindra Thar DI - Finally!

1) I have changed seats to the Thar CRDe seats. The front two are now buckets seats and I have retained my shorter rear bench seat and the Thar CRDe short bench rear seat so now both front seats can be reclined/pushed back without fouling with the rear bench. In the Thar CRDe OEM setup the rear bench behind the driver is shorter and the passenger seat longer preventing the passenger from reclining/pushing his seat all the way back.
2) Final Drive/Axle ratio changed to 47/11 (4.27) for better pick up/torque. Top speed is now about 108 on gps. When you change the axle ratio you also need to update your speedometer gear also.
3) RogeoTech Front & Bank Pipe Bumper with single peice winch plate.
4) Smitty Bilt XRC8 Winch.
5) Auburn Gear 19 Spline LSD
6) Lambda Free Wheeling Hubs
7) Lenso Alloys with 235/75/15 Maxis Treapedor Tires
8) Tow Plate & Reese Tow Hook
9) Thar CRDe Wheel Arches.
10) Rock Sliders, Headlamp, Turn signal, & Rear Lamp guards from RogeoTech
11) Hella Ralleye 4000 lamps
12) Fog lamps integrated into front bumper.
13) Insect Mesh for front grille
14) Blanked out EGR Valve
15) Cat-Con Bypass
17) Ironman Gas Charged Shocks
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