Deep Dive: 2014 W105 Mahindra Scorpio


An SUV that is over a decade old and yet manages to clock an average of 4,000 units in monthly sales. That's the story of the Mahindra Scorpio, arguably one of the most influential vehicle from the Mahindra stables. Launched in 2002, commemorating 50 years of Mahindra & Mahindra, the Scorpio SUV showcased to the world that the Indian automaker could successfully make the transition from being a tractor and UV maker to an SUV maker that can hold its own on the unforgiving Indian roads. The Scorpio was a runaway success right from its launch and ever since, the SUV has been an integral part of the Indian motoring landscape. Why, in May 2013's sales, the Mahindra Scorpio retook the status of the top selling SUV in India, from the Renault Duster. 

Over the years, Mahindra has given the Scorpio a range of improvements. Launched with 2 liter Renault petrol and 2.6 liter turbo diesel engine options, the Scorpio sold in India is now available with a smaller engine, in the form of the 2.2 Liter mHawk turbo diesel motor. Mahindra has given the Scorpio buyer a wide range of options to choose from, from a four wheel drive option to an automatic gearbox. While at it, Mahindra has refreshed the Scorpio a few times and each time, the SUV has gotten additional features and improvements making it a better product than before. That said, certain deficiencies remain and this is what the automaker could address very soon. 

Even as you're reading this, Mahindra engineers are toiling away at the Mahindra Research Valley(MRV) at Chennai, in order to conjure up an all new Scorpio that could debut debut in 2014. The 2014 Scorpio, code named the W105, is a project that aims to retain the butch looks of the SUV while reworking the innards to such an extent that the end product features most of the refinements that Scorpio owners would have loved to have right from the word go. One such project associated with the 2014 Scorpio is the T026 weight reduction program, which aims to shave off a whopping 260 kilograms off the SUV.

This ambitious weight reduction effort on the W105 Scorpio won't just improve performance but will also aid fuel efficiency by a big margin. Apart from the weight reduction, the 2.2 Liter mHawk turbo diesel engine could be tweaked to output more power and torque, perhaps in the 140 Bhp-330 Nm state of tune, as found on the XUV500. While more power and torque are always welcome, the nervous handling of the Scorpio doesn't exactly improve confidence once the needle crosses 100 Kph. Mahindra is expected to make major changes to the Scorpio's suspension in order to improve ride and handling characteristics, an area in which the Renault Duster scores highly. 

Mahindra could continue to stick to the body-on-ladder frame for the W105 Scorpio, albeit with hydro-forming treatment to bring the chassis up to date with the times. A longer wheelbase is another aspect that's said to be a speculated addition on the W105 Scorpio. The SUV suffers from less than optimum leg room in the middle seats and a longer wheelbase could serve to greatly increase legroom, and consequently the comfort offered. Also, a front facing row of third seats will heighten the appeal of the Scorpio, which is currently available with side facing jump seats. Fit and finish levels on the interiors could go up by a few notches, along with the equipment on offer. 

Mahindra engineers have showcased their ability to pack in a variety of creature comforts into XUV500. Prospective buyers of the 2014 Scorpio would be pleased to have creature comforts with the niggles ironed out. With a 2014 launch anticipated for the 2014 Scorpio, it's time for Team-BHPians to keep their eyes wide open for test mules. 

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