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Old 15th July 2015, 14:57   #1
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Default Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

It is raining XUV5OO in Team-BHP nowadays! Thanks to the legendary ownership threads by SDP, J.Ravi, .Anshuman, Danishmemon and so many more! And then there are new ones - Tanveer_5258, fusion_bang. So I now have enough reasons to blame these folks influencing me to get XUV5OO. Their influence is more than the endless XUV5OO niggles.

Background
So lets get to the fact of matter - this is my third ownership review on the forum and my first SUV and yet another XUV5OO in forum. This time, its not just another XUV5OO, but it's yet another orange XUV5OO

I have had a very happy and satisfying ownership of silver steed. Like every other car of mine from the past, I was committed to it to keep for it's life. But then this happens. The car grows on you or you "overgrow" compared to the car, in literal sense (I am nearing the century mark **wink**).

Actually there was nothing really wrong with my silver steed. I had put a lot of interest and money into it too. I had modifying its eyes, got her a descent infotainment unit. I was loving it with only one issue - the sixth/ seventh seat! It was bought almost 4.5 years ago when I was a family of three. And now we are family of 4. Every time we have guests and someone joining us for a short ride, we would run out of the space and of course the power to pull that weight. It was not an acute need to buy something new but I still wonder what made me look for substitute other than this carving for additional space. Maybe it was cost of maintenance and Petrol or that extra seating for occasional dinner trips within city or that highway cruising in triple digits or may be the feeling of SX4 soon going out of life support or may be an infatuation for SUVs. I really don't know.

But since I made the decision to change the silver steed, it was time for me to put together my requirements - some of these are repeat from past!

Requirements
- Can seat 6 comfortably, 2 of which are kids.
- More road presence and should not have a cab image associated with it
- Something that comes loaded to the brim. No customisations should be needed. I am as much fan of gizmos as the engine and brand!
- Must have high ground clearance and ability to get on my village roads when I want.
- Hey, it must be an UPGRADE in space, comfort, power and downgrade on the maintenance and cost of ownership.
- Although I am almost loyal to Maruti Suzuki, this time I was sure that It cannot be from same stable.
- Must have 120bhp or above power. Ideally it should not leave me asking for more power when on highways/ loaded.
- The engine must last for 100K+ Kms. I will have not buy anything to replace this car at least in next 4-5 years.
- The vehicle must be capable of long drives without causing much fatigue and inconvenience to me as a driver
- The second row where my wife sits must have proper AC. No feeling of suffocation. This is a top priority by the way. Who dares to say no?
- I will not stretch budget beyond Rs. 20 Lakhs, come what may.

Contenders For substituting Silver Steed -
Based on the above requirements the hunt had already started in my mind. Alternatives I was considering and analysing were -

Toyota Innova
Undoubtedly the king of the road when it comes to road presence, reliability and being driven around anywhere. The most reliable and proven vehicle. This was an obvious choice for these reasons -
  • Reliable engine.
  • The best handling on highways as well as city roads - some feel it huge, but its manageable
  • The cost of low end variant is too good.
  • Captain seats on second row
  • Enough Luggage space even if there are 6 people in the car
But then I didn't like these things about Innova -
  • The tall gear stick and vibrations gives the feel of truck!
  • As passenger the experience is almost unparalleled but for driver, it isn't that great. And come whatever may, I don't use driver.
  • Did I not mention about too many yellow boards?
  • The top variant is super costly compared to other rivals.
This was the worthy buy, but I turned it down mostly for the psychological reasons of Taxi branding and driver comfort than anything else.

Maruti Suzuki Ertiga
A great package and vehicle for the cost it comes. But is this really an upgrade from SX4? I don't think so. And I anyway needed something non -MS as next car.

Renault Lodgy
While there are many positives, this option does not come loaded with creature comfort I was looking for. Neither did it have an appeal at first look. The name itself was a deterrent. In the Renault stable, I would love to have a Duster AWD. My close friend has one and he is so happy, I would buy it any day if I had not given my requirement of 6-7 seater highest priority this time. So striking off this option too.

Chevrolet and Leyland options?
As a brand, I never liked anything in Chevrolet. The only car I admired was Cruze. But then that is not what I wanted to buy anyway. These options were off my target list even before they made it to the list!

Santa Fe, Fortuner, Pajero, Endeavour
Now this is a serious consideration. I have always loved looks of Sant Fe. About Hyundai I was sure to have it loaded with Gizmos and reliability as well. The only deterrent is cost though.

When I looked at Fortuner and researched all options and benefits vis-a-vis other available options, Fortuner didn't make it to my final list due to cost and not so great advantage of drivability and package as compared to XUV5OO. Although I wouldn't care much about Fortuner being used by real estate tycoons, the cost of same creature comfort compared to XUV is almost 30% more! And it is my impression that the second row seats have lesser leg room on them as compared to XUV5OO! I have driven a brand new Zoom car Fortuner and have made up this understanding.

When it comes to SUV, Pajero is my all time favourite SUV with 4WD options. It is legendary in the sense that it has been around for so many years, so much SUV genes in it and yet has some damn good serious looks. But again, cost is a deterrent here.

Endeavour is one macho SUV! But it's so outdated and old compared to it's rivals, I wasn't excited with this option either. Of course the cost is again a problem but even if I had money, I would not put it on Endeavour camper to Pajero/ Fortuner or Santa Fe. So actually all of these were NO-GO from cost and features perspective.

Force One
For the cost it comes, this is a great option. Especially the feeling of running the Mercedes heart, this makes the special appearance in the short list. But then knowing the service network, coverage and not so head turning looks, I didn't want to gamble with this car. No test Drives, just striked off the list. And yes, even Mr Sr. AB cannot influence me for to buy this car as much as J.Ravi and SDP did!

Tata Safari/ Mahindra Scorpio
I have always liked the looks of Safari. The indigenous SUV that is a flagship vehicle for Tata. The price is perfect. Its a proven Package. So when I wanted to test drive a brand new safari, I first went to my old friend who has one. I drove it and did not have a good feeling about the car as such. Of course the car has improved over period of time but its the same old technology, same long gear stick giving the truck like feeling and the unknown reliability of TATA. And the looks of newer model isn't as compelling to the older ones. So this was off my list too.

Scorpio is great option for me. But the image of a white clothed Bangalorean with dozens of gold chains did not excite me either. The ride is kind of bumpy. The gear stalk is still like a truck. I have driven and been driven in this car in the past too. And I like this as a rural SUV if I was in agriculture business. But then that is it. To suit the image of an urban IT Joe/ Executive, Scorpio is not the answer. Also, when you get the big brother, why look at something small?

Mahindra XUV 5OO
XUV5OO is the most complete package that fits my requirements. Check with my requirements list - each line is Tick! And when the heart is sold on the looks, price, overall package, your mind cannot find faults. I liked the XUV package for below reasons primarily -
  • The top end variant fits my budget very easily.
  • The fully loaded top variant does not leave me craving for any accessory that would need serious modification.
  • The red color option was something my kids and wife always wanted.
  • Extra Seating or, Space for 5 plus luggage was good enough
  • Engine option combined with safety package was instant win.
  • The new facelift version was loaded with even more gizmos than the older one. Though the looks are subjective, the convenience and fancy of sun roof, state of the art infotainment was too hard to resist.

The most appealing fact of the matter was - It's actually a desi SUV! Something made me feel patriotic. I know it sounds stupid, but that appealed me. The test drive was very good. On one weekend I had taken the kids and wife to take the test drive. We loved the car - its appearance, comfort and driving too. I had visited the Sireesh Automobiles on Hosur road and taken the car on Bangalore Hosur Elevated Highway for a spin. The feeling of steering a rocket after 1500 RPM was all that made the positive impression. Apart from all the likes I am going to write in subsequent posts, the "YES" from family was helpful the seal the deal! So the decision was made.

To Be Continued...

Last edited by abirnale : 21st July 2015 at 15:33.
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Old 15th July 2015, 17:56   #2
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Test Drive and Booking Experience
When we took the car for a test drive, my two year son liked it so much that he started calling it "our new car"! My daughter was so excited that she gave instant thumbs up for it. The reason for her to say yes was the sun roof. We have experienced this in our Camry ownership earlier and we love it. You can argue it's utility in India but we know for sure how to make use of it!

There was some feeling of suffocation in our old car in the rear seat due to not so effective AC of SX4. The experience from second row by wifey was too good. She was happy with the ability to cool the cabin when we took test drive in the noon. So while everything was god and red was the colour we wanted to buy, something happened - we bumped on a copper colour XUV5OO standing in the showroom. (Mahindra calls it sunset orange and so will we.) We had seen it in brochures, adverts and in marketing literature too. But seeing it first time in flesh, it was impressive. The best part is under different sun light and shade combination it looked new all the time. So we decided to book the car in Orange colour. As a stand by of course the red will do.

Engine type & variant
I always believed in going for top end version. In terms of Engine type and option, there isn't varied capacity or power options like Endeavour. So no question of breaking head on what to go with! The new W10 version is loaded with a lot of small and cool options - it is top end variant. The only thing I did not like in it was the overdose of chrome. But then, I gulped it to silence myself. I can't have my own cake and eat it too. While we were sure about W10, the question of AWD vs FWD was brewing in my mind. While I was infatuated with AWDs, I did not go for it finally. Instead of booking same day, I actually came out of the showroom without booking. Gave myself a good full day and mulled over it.

In XUV5OO the AWD is all intelligent and automatic. You don't have options to engage L/H etc. My driving is not going to be in slush or mountains all the time. When so many XUVs and other FWD/ RWD vehicles have made it to places like Leh, do I really need an AWD? The mind said no. For my kinda driving (500 Kms in City every month/ 300 Kms on Highway every quarter), all I need is - FWD/ RWD with high ground clearance to tackle pot holes, non-tar roads and Bengaluru speed breakers.

I also recalled my discussion with Vedant (VellVector) from our last overnighter at BR Hills. He has 4 XUVs in his factory and all of them are rocking till date. In his stable he has 25th XUV that rolled out of Mahindra factory. One of them has done over 400K Kms and still no signs of giving up. I have seen him pushing his XUV around the corners, on rough roads and yet be happy with what it does for him. I have also took ride in his car in second row. So I was more convinced that this will be my next car even before I had bought it. This probably played an important role in my mind to choose XUV5OO.

Of course there is this thing about driver to be able to manage to throw the car around the corners, maintain and make the car do what it does. And then the vehicle is also equal player in this game. Looking at Vedant, I was sure the 50% of the game is done if i get the XUV5OO and remaining 50%, I will have to up my ante, may be. But overall we have the passing marks

So there goes my booking order to Sireesh Automobiles. They have been very patient and not really pushing me to book car asap - unlike Anant! So a phone call to my sales executive does the thing. He comes to my office, picks up booking cheque and next day my booking is confirmed. What then starts is an unbearable wait for two weeks! I was told to wait for three weeks but I was very sure that they can make it in two! I was following up with them almost every day within a week of booking!

When I booked the car, the on road price was non-negotiable. Although there was chance that price may change (that fine print on booking form!), it did not! I paid Rs 25,000 as booking amount and Cheetah was set to come home.

The only thing I bargained was the additional accessories - Body Cover, Mats, UC Coating and some small undisclosed goodies. At the time of booking the breakup of the cost reflected the charges of Insurance as Rs. 60K. This was too much I knew instantly. So after doing my own study, I got the SA to agree to issue me the insurance at 40K for zero dep, bumper to bumper.

At the time of delivery I had asked them to fit the MMI Head Rests on Driver and Co-Driver seats for second row entertainment. All the cost including this for on road came out to be Rs. 18,67,000. I had clearly told the SA that when the vehicle arrives, I need to look at the vehicle myself for a PDI. If I do not like it, I will reject it. He will get remaining money only if I give go ahead.

PDI Experience
Within 10 days of booking, I got to know that vehicle has arrived in their stock yard and next day I should be prepared for my PDI. I was expected to go prepared with money too. So to complete the PDI, there were two things I did - took the VIN and sent it to Vedant to cross check. It came out clean. My own decoding of the VIN revealed nothing alarming.

So equipped with PDI check sheet, I headed to Sireesh. From the XUV5OO check sheet available on TBHP, I made some edits to the copy.

You can access updated sheet here - XUV500-PDI-Checklist-v2.pdf.

When I arrived for the PDI, this beauty was awaiting me -

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The only sour experience was the tyres. It came with Apollo's. A quick discussion with SDP and NikhilB, I decided to go with whatever came with the car. I was told that they are not as good as Bridgestone Duellers but not bad either. If I am really looking to change, none of the options that came with XUV5OO would make it to comparison. So there was no point for fighting for duellers. Also a lot of duster owners have been using the Apollo tyres - its their flagship SUV shoe. And they are happy. So I did not find a reason to say no to them.

I spent around one full hour doing my PDI and the SA awestruck! He said - you are more QC focused than anyone I have ever seen! There were few small things noticed like panel gaps but it was expected from Mahindra **Sad**. I already knew what I am buying, so nothing could upset me.

I gave a thumbs up to registration. Gave all money. The day was set to receive the vehicle - Friday June 26, 2015! With some uncertainty coming in last moment about registration delay at RTO etc, Sireesh made it on given date and time! 10 out of 10 to them for keeping their word.

Delivery Experience
On Friday, we left our kids to school and after a long time, me and my wife travelled in an Auto Rickshaw to Sireesh showroom. Equipped with Flowers, Gifts to SA, all delivery checklist, we were there ahead of time - 30 mins in advance! But there was no orange car there yet! We were taken inside the showroom to complete the paper work and kept busy until 11am. I realised that I did not tell them to get the extended warranty for 4/5 year upto 150K Kms. I did that during the paper work. Cost of extended warranty with RSA Rs 24600. And then SA came calling to reach vehicle delivery area!

Time for pics to do the talking -

Took gifts for our SA and his manager -
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The Delivery Ceremony -
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They framed this!
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We were first time being treated like this - all attention to us. Like celebrities. I was told to cut the ribbon and the car was uncovered. We were super happy! I was told to move the car 10ft ahead from the ceremonial area. When I did that, and got down to see what SA explains me about car, I was sweetly surprised. They had photographed Key handover ceremony and framed it too! Along with box of chocolates, it was handed over to us. The experience was so cool!

With a coupon of 8 ltrs Diesel, quick demo of car operation we left the Sireesh Showroom only to find the temples closed for noon! We had to wait until evening to get the pooja done. When we filled Diesel, my wife commented - Cheetah's stomach is as big as mine! It gulped 70+ Ltrs in one go!

And then car comes home to rest for the day! You can imagine me not sleeping in the night and just reading through user manuals, and thinking myself driving in the SUV for next few years!

To Be continued...

Last edited by abirnale : 21st July 2015 at 15:53.
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Old 16th July 2015, 09:52   #3
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

So now since Cheetah is home, before I pen down further experience with initial ownership and recent drives, let me summarise my impression in this post. Note that, there is already a detailed official review by SDP and Tushar. This is totally from my perspective so far. My findings so far about Engine, Braking, Performance, etc are recorded below -

What I liked -
Once you own it, you find more plus than minus. That is how life is!
  • The overall package is impressive. The cost, the extra gizmos and the most important thing vehicle engine itself.
  • The looks, exterior, interior can easily impress anyone. It sure is a head turner. I was initially not so sure about the chrome overdone on face. But over the past three weeks, It did not bother me much. The chrome on the front fog lamps is a kind of overkill I still think and a simple plastidip DIY should be perfect. [And by the way the newer XUV lot coming this month do not have a full chrome line on the side along the window. The last quarter is naked.]
  • The small things in its interior such as coin holder, chiller, laptop storage, cigarette lighters on each row, the leather upholstery are nice little finishing touches.
  • The paint on the exterior as well as plastic finish is good compared to my old car. I do not have anyone to wash the car but take it to service station myself once a week or two. There is always some amount of dust where I park my car and even with that dust, it doesn't look bad. The point I'm making is - the vibrant orange colour isn't too hard to maintain.
  • The overall build quality seems very good. Especially coming from a MS vehicle, it is way better. The soft thud of doors closing is pleasant experience. The weight of the car probably makes all the difference too in terms of overall stability and sturdiness.
  • There is no major rattling sound. But if you closely observe, the middle folding row assembly on really bad road keeps making some sound.
  • The tyres are wide and reasonable. The NVH levels are acceptable. As I said - this XUV5OO came with Apollo tyres. They were initially not perceived as very good ones but last 200Kms of driving, this opinion has changed. I have driven on the highway as well as city roads so far and I don't see much of an issue. Of course they are far better than SX4 stock JKs. At higher speeds I experience relatively calm cabin.
  • The diesel engine sometime when I keep the music on lowest one bar volume, can be heard making noise in the morning. Once it heats up, It's as peppy as a kid on the playground. Especially in the range of 1700 RPM and above in third, fourth and fifth gear feels like it is super fun. The 140bhp mHawk engine is very refined and pretty much like a petrol. It can surprise any dam thing on the road. The overtaking is breeze. Handling on the highway is very much comparable to SX4 I had. Even though the height and GC is more than SX4, it does not scare to attack the corners with the ease of sedan. One can easily hit triple digit speeds. Of course you cannot exactly compare, but far better than Fortuner or Safari or Scorprio I have driven so far. Other than regular getting used to [gear changes in city and idling the car first thing in morning, and for little time after long runs] it did not take much time for me to adjust. And whatever noise I have heard so far from outside or inside is expected to smooth out even further after first service. So that should be even more positive thing. The drivability is too good in city as well as highway. It's more of fun in highway than Bengaluru's b2b traffic. The fear of someone touching the body is more in this car due to it's size and lack of full around visibility, but with it's majestic presence, the autos and small vehicles give way anyway!
  • The visibility of the road from driver seat is very good. The mirrors needed to adjust to show me sideway/ rear at lower height! Else the chance of not seeing a biker was good possibility! The cornering lights will illuminate the curves at night far better. Mahindra terms it as static bending lights. The moment you turn the steering wheel while headlights are on, both side of the corner lights lit up. A nice little feature!
  • The driver seat adjustment is super easy. It took me some time to find my comfortable position but when I found it, I now feel like steering an elephant with an agility of horse! A wish that is unfulfilled still though - memorise the seat position! You use the height adjustment only a few times - it could be fine as manual adjustment too.
  • The gear shifts are car like. The nice rubbery feel on the gear stalk is good. If coming from Maruti, the reverse engagement is little different. it takes time to get used to. I can shift the gears with just two fingers! And note that this is the only manual gear shift car with cruise control! A good breather on my NH4 drives!
  • At first I thought the handbrake is too oddly placed but when I used it, I did not feel anything odd.
  • The second row space is huge. Kids enjoy the second row and wifey couldn't be more happier too! I have sat in the Fortuner too and with a tall person in driver or Co-driver seat, it is kind of tight space in second row. But in XUV5OO somehow I felt it to be more spacious on the second row.
  • The seat belt height adjuster on co-driver seat is perfect for my 9 year old daughter. It fits her so well that we no more need the booster seat. Of course she is borderline for getting promoted into the regular seating but its pleasant discovery for me to let her booster seat go!
  • The infotainment unit is reliable and good utility. The quality of voice and bluetooth connectivity is seamless. The BlueSense App on android works great. To set it up you need the Chassis and Engine number to be fed in app. You cannot connect it just like any other bluetooth phone. The App shows exact tyre pressure in all 5 wheels though infotainment unit only shows OK/ Not OK markers. The speed sensing volume control is very useful feature that can be turned on or off based on your preference. The radio antenna has great signal reception capability. I can hear Bangalore FM Stations as far as 20 Kms before Chitradurga. Unlike old XUV5OO there are no niggles so far
  • The air conditioner in Auto/ Econ mode does its job well. The rear AC is pleasantly cool. The second row has lesser air blow capability than the rearmost ones. The reason could be due to air duct flowing through the roof top of A/ B pillar.
  • I am no more afraid of pot holes and Bengaluru BBMP can throw any speed-breakers at me. I am sure to conquer! The ride quality is good over humps and bad roads. I feared the body roll in SUVs but all my passengers in last row have fun so far. None complained! In terms of suspension, it's many level up from my older car. At silent road, when you go over a hump with windows rolled down, you can hear the "hiss" like air sound from suspension working for you. I have driven to and fro office with my tiffin with Rice/Rassam in it, kept on the floor. Not even once it was spilled. The tiffin in not the lock type but those typical Milton three box steel ones!
  • Steering is easily adjustable to my driving posture as well as style. It has nice grip for city and highway drives. It's slightly tighter than SX4 though. Good thing is it does not vibrate or makes you feel nervous even at high speeds.
  • Braking is one of the best I have experienced. All four wheels comes with disc brakes. It has a definite bite that inspires to take that gamble of late braking. When you hit the brake in relatively slower speed, I like that feel of gentle rocking caused by sudden stop and suspension working to gobble up that impact. Tailing the slow runners in the right most lane close enough and then braking isn't too difficult. And couple that with excellent overtaking power at around 1700-2200 RPM can make that highway zip-zap fun.
  • The features of Hill Descent Control is very handy. By default the ascent control is always enabled. So no more fear of rolling backwards when coming out of that steep Meenakshi mall ramp! When you set the Hill Descent Control ON, the descent on the ramps or ghat roads would be controlled one. I have not needed to use that ever yet as I am used to engine braking more and never needed this actually.
  • Electronic Stability Program (ESP) is by default ON. You can switch it off in case driving in the mild slush but never had to do it so far.
  • The lounge lighting thought like gimmick but on a sedate night drive on the NICE road, I enjoyed it with an open roof!
  • The IRVM is good. Gives you perfect view of the rear through rear glass. The reverse camera with park assist is real blessing for tight apartment parking.
  • The remote key is accurate to work. I have never taken it out of my pocket. Its like black magic to touch the black button on door handle and open it! No beeps and no honks. Car detects the proximity very well. The moment I step out of the car with key, 2 ft away, it alerts with chirps.
  • The Auto Wipers and Auto Lights do their job well. I had couple of drives in the rain and with the intensity of the rain, the wipers work less or more to keep the windshield clear of the water. I like that handy feature. I can focus on the road more!

What I did not like
  • The head lights are powerful but on highway I might need little more light! When you put the lights in Auto Mode, the high beam cannot be used other than for passing/ flashing.
  • The Rear Wiper does not have any intermittent operation or way to slow it down. When it is ON, it just keeps wiping in a haste!
  • The exterior panel gaps on bonnet are visible if you closely observe.
  • The interior storage is good but when you put up last row, there is literally no space for luggage. The roof rack storage is must. The good news is with only one elder kid at the rear seat, I can fold the half seat and keep two trolleys on it and secure it.
  • The chrome lining on the side is very weak. It is coming out after 3 days of parking the sun! I can fix it with 3M tape but want this to come out anyway. I hate chrome! I just need to make sure that this does not let rain water in!
  • I feel the engine noise is higher than my petrol SX4 but then that is expected. I have to get used to this.
  • When I connect iPhone as iPod, it looses the bluetooth connection. This is not the case with Android. So I have now switched to Android Phone. The BlueSense app is more stable and useful on Android.
  • The turning radius should have been little smaller.
  • When you run the Navigation, the clock is changed to ETA. You have to have a watch to see current time if you are a time freak! Or go figure out those hidden options in menu to see current time all time.
  • MMI Navigation is very good but does not have as many POIs as Google Maps. Things like Emerald Lake/ Destiny Farm Stay in Ooty is not on their driving direction list!
  • The Cigarette Lighter in the front row below infotainment unit has too small cubby hole/ storage. Thats due to that start and stop button on it's side. Wish it was larger to keep the phone itself in that cubby hole.
  • The placement of start stop button is too bad. I fear accidental push might stop the car while it is running. I look at it as major safety threat.

Important points to Note -
  • At this time of posting this thread, the ODO reads 2100 Kms.
  • My usage pattern is very simple - daily 12 Kms of drive to and fro to work. Once a month long drive for 400-1500 Kms Range. So monthly average is definitely 1500 Kms.
  • Fuel Economy I have got so far is 11 and 12. Highway is definitely 12 - gathered from infotainment display.
  • I am now pretty much used to the diesel driving. I enjoy the surge in power after 1500 RPM. But not pushing beyond 2000-2200 RPM yet since I want to complete run-in until 5000Kms.
  • When I took the delivery, the reading of the ODO was 46Kms And I had to reset it using the long press on tripmeter reset button. You can apparently do this reset with any XUV5OO if its ODO is below 150 Kms I guess. Remember SDP mentioning this in his thread.
  • I have to still hit the first service mark and hence no comments around cost of servicing/ maintenance.

Transition from SX4 Petrol to XUV500
Although I have added all the points that I liked and didn't above, this is worth mentioning on how was my transition from SX4 Petrol to XUV5OO diesel. Driving diesel is totally different ballgame than driving petrol (and I guess being petrol head to diesel head too. *lol*!). In the city traffic SX4 was breeze to drive. When I used to stop at red light and all the bikes used to squeeze through the traffic and come in front of me on zebra crossing, I used to have a wicked smile and enjoy the very next moment. The moment traffic light turns green, a honk and sudden burst of power would take my SX4 in a straight-line ahead of all bikes, cars. And I could do this easily in second gear. The gear shifts were very very quick. Within a distance of 20 meters, I could easily slot between 1-2-3 gears. Even though the RPM used to hit 4500 or so in 2/3 gear, engine and myself as driver would love that revving sound. On the highway, the speeds of 120+kmph would literally make the SX4 engine revolve around 3500 RPM constantly. Any additional power need would come after a bit of gear changes or pushing the car further with considerable effort. The noise of engine working hard and craving for additional 10 Kmph was very evident. Overtaking any vehicle that is less than 120 Kmph was no big deal. But anything after this was real hard sweating for engine as well as driver skills.

This isn't the case with XUV5OO. In city, it's not as aggressive as SX4 used to be. Slotting gears from 1st to second to third takes some time and distance too. May be I am still getting used to it but I can feel the sure difference between those sudden accelerations in SX4 and comparatively lower ones on the cheetah. But the best part is when it slots into second or third gear, there can be hardly anyone ahead of you provided that road is clear! Only IRVM will be the place where I can see something! The point to note - XUV5OO is very quick and pretty much like automatic in second or third gear. To go over humps, I generally use second gear which was not the case with SX4. I used to slot SX4 to first gear when there was a large hump. But with XUV5OO, it is easy to cross over humps in second gear. Simply slot into second, press clutch, take foot off the accelerator, and wait for front wheels to gently go over hump. Right after that gently leave the clutch. Do nothing and comfortably the car goes over the hump without any hassle and awkward bumps for passengers. On the highway, the beast in XUV5OO is actually unleashed. Even at 2200 RPM this behemoth can cruise at 120 Kmph. The engine still seems to have left with a lot of energy to go beyond! Of course being in running in period, I did not do this more than a couple of times.

The other notable difference is - going uphill. On the twists/ curvy/ uphill ramps to come out of my parking place, I have to get XUV5OO in the first gear only. On the Ooty hair pin bends, I drove mostly in second gear (occasionally third) uphill keeping RPMs below 2500 all the time. In the SX4 I remember taking all twists and ghats in third and above almost always. I have not been on my favourite chorala route to Goa yet in XUV5OO but that would be something cheetah would love!

So to summarise, the gear changes was the most important thing I need to unlearn and learn from SX4 to XUV5OO. So I am a Diesel Convert now or say Diesel Head? **Feeling Silly**!

For the records, here are the links to official review of old and new face lift -
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/offici...ve-review.html (Mahindra XUV500 : Test Drive & Review)
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/offici...al-review.html (2015 Mahindra XUV500 Facelift : Official Review)

I hope you enjoyed this reading. I will be adding more pictures and experiences of driving as I my cheetah munches more miles!

And More Pictures now -

Cheetah resting near water body -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-img_2457.jpg

The current parking in our basement is very tight -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-b1parking.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-b1parkingfullfront.jpg

There are some very tight spots - which I am sure will be a task to put cheetah in like this -
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The macho wheels, I love it -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-wheels.jpg

When you unlock the car, these cool hologram projections come out - Images day time and night time -
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The A-B-C Pedals with a dead pedal -
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Driver - leg room
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The Driver Side door panel - This can actually operate all windows even if they are locked. When my little one starts playing with window up and down in middle row, I can lock it for him but still raise or lower at my will without unlocking window locks!
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The Front Seats and Sun roof view - The Sunroof isn't very big but just exactly what is required for enough light and air to let in.
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Middle Row Seats -
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This is the maximum the doors on middle row can open -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-middlerowdoorsmaxopen.jpg

The seat back storage behind Driver and codriver -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-backseathandystorage.jpg

The boot has nice luggage room if the last row is folded. Also many cubby places to store magazine/ 500 ml bottle and the hook for luggage net -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-bootspace.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-magazineholder2.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-magazineholder.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-bootnetholdmount.jpg

The Lounge Light at night is soothing to eyes -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-loungelight.jpg

The Central Infotainment / Instrument cluster looks majestic -
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The FE figures so far -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-fefigure.jpg

Very handy Reverse camera with park guides and assist modes for parallel park or 45 degree park.
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-revcamera.jpg

And the last important piece - to keep my kids engaged on boring drives - MMI headrests with DVD and Game player -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-mmidvdplayer.jpg

These come with individual game consoles that can be used to play multi-player games!

To Be Continued...

Last edited by Vid6639 : 22nd July 2015 at 14:17. Reason: removing mention of high speeds
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Old 17th July 2015, 08:52   #4
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On the very weekend of car being delivered, we decided to visit out relatives in city - another chance to drive and stretch the legs

After a customary home pooja, we decided to head to Indian Paratha Company off Hyderabad Highway - right after the Devanahalli crossing.

For a change, we had kiddo perform pooja -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-pooja.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-allkidspose.jpg

On our way to IPC, it was very bad traffic on ORR upto Hebbal Flyover. Me being newbie on this car, had tough time steering through the mess on road. I noticed that the Micro Hybrid - start stop system was working very well. Every time I slot gear into neutral and leave the clutch, the engine automatically stops. As soon as I press the clutch, it comes back to life. The best part is, none in the car had noticed this start and stop but me. After a while, I thought the engine is in running-in period. And hence not put this system in ON mode. let the engine run more and settle down soon. So now I keep the Auto Start/ Stop system switched off for all the time. Its noteworthy that while the system is ON and Engine shuts off in neutral, the AC vents still throw the cool air. I suppose the fan only keeps running and since the AC was already at work before engine went off, cool air keeps coming.

Later after Hebbal flyover upto IPC is an amazingly cruising stretch. Time to use Cruise Control! I simply slotted the gear in sixth position and set on the cruise control. It was really so simple and convenient, I suddenly felt myself driving on GQ soon

Even in the noon around 2pm when the sun at it's best, the car AC was at it's best too! I must say this experience is manyfold better than what I had in my silver steed!

Here are some more pictures from the IPC run.

Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-ipc.jpg

Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-ipc2.jpg

And thats me *Yeah*!
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-outsideipc.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-outsideipc2.jpg

On Sunday morning, we wanted to drive more. Hence the idea of going for breakfast to MTR on Kanakapura road after AOL came up. We drove via NICE road, had nice breakfast and then just for fun went on drive further until Kanakapura with windows rolled down and sunroof wide open. The low traffic condition coupled with cloudy monsoon morning was heavenly feeling! Unfortunately no pictures from the breakfast ride.

Last edited by abirnale : 21st July 2015 at 20:08.
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Old 17th July 2015, 09:20   #5
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A week passed by. Just a simple home-office run is all cheetah doing. The urban thumper - RE bird is taking rest!

In a casual talk on WhatsApp, on Friday night, a close friend and dbhpian sent picture of markonahalli dam -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-mlake.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-mapproach.jpg

And the idea of photo op on the bank of lake brewed up with breakfast at Swathy Delicacy on Bangalore Mangalore Road in no time. So with few more friends late at night around 11pm, the plan was finalised. And there we were headed to the Markonahalli Photo Op - Breakfast Ride!

Here are some pictures from this ride.

Highway and Breakfast -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-hwystop.jpg
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Approaching Lake -
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Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-lake.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-lakeside.jpg

You always see wild life near water!
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And the line up -
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-lineup.jpg
Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD-lineup2.jpg

This was by far the first longish ride. Maximum usage of Sixth gear and cruise control was highlight of the drive. It has been an awesome experience so far with the car. Although the road is straight, the occasional zip-zap through slow trucks and other two wheelers on highway was fun. I was really tempted to paste but kept reminding myself that this is not the time. Running-in period must finish peacefully and below 120 Kmph/ 2500 RPM. That is it!

The cruise control has best implementation as far as my experience with it goes. The setup in my Camry earlier was little complicated. But this one is superb. With just a press of Set+ and hold for 3 seconds or so sets the cruise control in action. Use of A-B-C cancels it instantly. The +/- easily increase or decrease speed while in the cruise mode. The response of +/- is instant. I could use it to overtake in couple of cases. When the Cruise Control is ON but is in stand by mode (because I pressed either of A-B-C) the car is in regular drive mode. To bring back to cruise mode, a touch of resume button is sufficient. From the current speed I was in (around 80 kmph), it would bring back to last known cruise speed (110 Kmph) and set the cruising mode back ON. This resume function is a bliss!

By the way, while all of this is great and happening, there is a small niggle too! The chrome lining on the side doors - at the end of the rear side has come off. The gum that holds the chrome strip with glass on the door has come out loose. But never mind, I am handy with 3M tape and a small DIY fixes it until next time!

All picture courtesy and (c) - from the friends and KarthikK who drove together to lake and breakfast!

Last edited by abirnale : 21st July 2015 at 20:15.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 13:47   #6
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Initial Ownership Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 22nd July 2015, 14:13   #7
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Quote:
Originally Posted by abirnale View Post
So the decision was made.
Congratulations and best wishes for infinite miles with smiles, abirnale and your Orange Cheetah from a person, who owns the same beast and bird.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 14:27   #8
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Congratulations on your Orange cheetah Happy munching miles with the beast.

XUV really looks cool in this color and I am really surprised when you mentioned it is not a dust magnet and easy to maintain. I think Mahindra made the right decision with this color and it stands out in the crowd, because no other SUV comes in this color
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Old 22nd July 2015, 15:05   #9
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Congratulations Avinash, wish you miles of smiles and happiness with your new beast.
Missed you the other day on the NICE Road exit at Mysore.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 18:30   #10
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Congrats Avinash on the Cheetah!!

Are you planning of getting 3D or 3M floor mats? It may become difficult to clean the carpet if you are using only the standard ones.

From your pics, A-B-C pedals has new design compared to older XUV's and looks better just like center console.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 19:02   #11
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Quote:
Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
Congrats Avinash on the Cheetah!!
Are you planning of getting 3D or 3M floor mats? It may become difficult to clean the carpet if you are using only the standard ones.
Thank you Suhas. You are one of those people who have unknowingly influenced me with XUV5OO, especially the travelogues.

I was considering custom cutting mats out of noodle carpet. They hold good amount of dirt, water and slush in them and do not let anything get down easily. They also have a great feeling to feet. Just waiting for SunnyBoi to take out some time for me to do this DIY.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ku69rd View Post
Missed you the other day on the NICE Road exit at Mysore.
Thank you sir. Yes, we were headed to Ooty as our first long family ride in Cheetah. And I was probably too focused on the road. Did not realise that you were there. Got to know very late. But sure we will be able to catch up soon

Quote:
Originally Posted by fusionbang View Post
Congratulations on your Orange cheetah Happy munching miles with the beast.
Thank you buddy for the help with initial contacts at Anant. I did not go with them but all the help you provided was great. Thanks a ton.

I just returned from a rain filled weekend drive from Chitradurga and the dirt is still on the car. It still looks good in that dirt. Cleaning that dirt - I am sure is going to be a task but not as much as it is in general if I use ONR or similar kind of technique. I have done a paint protection treatment. Nirmal @ Keystone Detailing did it. More details on that to follow soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by J.Ravi View Post
Congratulations and best wishes for infinite miles with smiles, abirnale and your Orange Cheetah from a person, who owns the same beast and bird.
Thank you sir. I can't match anything you do or have done, but just this ownership of a cheetah and a bird
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Old 22nd July 2015, 20:06   #12
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Congrats abirnale. A fitting upgrade. Wish you all the best.

I used to follow your SX4 thread closely. My previous car was a silver sx4 and coincidently I sold it around the same time you started your ownership report ( Nov 2013). So your thread was kind of a nostalgic fall back for me
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Old 22nd July 2015, 20:09   #13
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Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
From your pics, A-B-C pedals has new design compared to older XUV's and looks better just like center console.
Even my prefacelift XUV has similar kind of pedals, especially the A pedal. In W10 model alone it is sporty aluminium pedals. I checked in your ownership review and yes it has a different A pedal. Pic for reference of my car

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Quote:
Originally Posted by abirnale View Post
I was considering custom cutting mats out of noodle carpet. They hold good amount of dirt, water and slush in them and do not let anything get down easily. They also have a great feeling to feet.
Yes Avinash the noodle carpets are really good, I have them from 3M and it really holds the dirt really well and easy to clean. You can see in the pic it looks dirty in the pic after my recent chikmagalur trip. But it is barely visible to naked eyes


Quote:
Originally Posted by abirnale View Post
Thank you buddy for the help with initial contacts at Anant. I did not go with them but all the help you provided was great. Thanks a ton.
No problem Avinash anytime
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Old 22nd July 2015, 20:25   #14
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Default re: Ownership Tales - The Orange Cheetah! 2015 Mahindra XUV500 W10 FWD

Congratulations Avinash!! From a Beast (Well it was indeed) to a Bigger Beast.

For both these rides, Ground Clearance & abuse are word too far.

Wishing you Happy Mile Crunching with your Orange Cheetah.

And yes, its raining Cheetahs on Team-Bhp. Goes to say that the XUV is indeed a wonderful vehicle that answers most of the needs (and few more).

All the Best and keep us updated on your future drives. We may have met this weekend at the outset of monsoon in Western MH but there's always next time.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 22:22   #15
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Congratulations on buying the Orange Cheetah. The colour of your cheetah look really cool & for sure it's a head turner. It was a little surprising to see the chrome strip giving up in just few days. Did you let the A.S.S. know about it? Spending a fortune on a car like this & these are the things least expected out of it. Wishing you many more miles in your cheetah.:beer:
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