Go Back   Team-BHP > BHP India > The Indian Car Scene

Closed Thread
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 6th February 2010, 16:18   #31
Senior - BHPian
tanwaramit's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Dilwalon ki Dilli
Posts: 1,896
Thanked: 391 Times

nice thread Sid, it was high time to appreciate M&M for the work they have done on scorpio. I am passing this URL to my brother is against Scorpio and wants to buy Innova.
tanwaramit is offline  
Old 6th February 2010, 21:45   #32
Distinguished - BHPian
4x4addict's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chennai
Posts: 4,055
Thanked: 2,708 Times


I feel you should let your brother buy the Innova. It is the best MUV out there. I would recommend anything else only if the person prefers to SUV look to an MUV look.
4x4addict is offline  
Old 6th February 2010, 23:01   #33
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 103
Thanked: 8 Times

The decision between scorpio & innova is pretty simple, either go with what your heart wishes or with what your brain tells you.

Coming back to the thread, waiting for the updates Sidbhai.
piyush78 is offline  
Old 7th February 2010, 08:49   #34
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Hamden
Posts: 120
Thanked: 55 Times

good thread. waiting for more
raveen_2023 is offline  
Old 19th February 2010, 21:31   #35
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: -
Posts: 4,724
Thanked: 4,097 Times

Testing and validation

Designing an entirely new from grounds up SUV is not what you call a bachchon ka khel.
And being a Mahindra, you have millions of fans, so expectations are gargantuan.
Because you are tougher than the toughest.

Once the design was finalized, came the engineer's most challenging aspect of his life at Mahindra: Testing and validation of components across the country's harshest, most grueling terrain ever, for more than a million kilometers.
Just 50 prototypes were built, many of them were sorted to shakedown tests, cold weather tests at north at frozen temperatures, hot weather tests at north western parts, handling tests at VRDE, endurance tests at every length and breadth of the country possible.

Since the design concept was supplier driven, to manufacture the scorpio, an entirely new plant was commissioned in Mahindra's greenfield facility at Nasik.
All new robots were imported from western Europe, assemble line was designed under licence from a US based supplier, the interiors were designed with the help of Lear corporation, which also supplied with the seats, and Japanese expertise was bought in to aid in the manufacturing processes with close to world class fit, finish and precision from day one of commercial production.

While testing was carrying on, a point to note was that an unknown supplier-Samlip of Korea, was tapped in to tune the suspension. While many of you may question this, the reason was to keep costs low and Korea has one of the most cost effective engineering expertise in the world.
Another aspect-the use of leaf springs at the back, was questionable, especially on a "modern age" SUV, but Mahindra believes that buyers would load it to the gills and even abuse it, so to keep that Mahindra tradition of toughness alive, leaf springs was found out to be the best compromise between optimal ride, handling and rigidity to tackle our treacherous terrain.
Mahindra's engineers were well aware that the product, like many homegrown products, will not be right from day one and constant improvements have to be carried out when the product is commercially launched.

2001 was an year when there was uncertainty regarding the parity of petrol and diesel fuel prices. Many believed that subsidy was to be weaved off, meaning that both fuels would cost the same. Mahindra also beleived that in its target market, there would be some small percentage of customers who still love the refinement and smoothness of petrols, with high performance.
So, alongside the development of all new SZ 2600 DI motor with assistance and collaboration with renowned engine tuning specialist, AVL of Austria, an all new petrol motor from Renault, a longitudinal mounted 1991 CC in line-4 was also tested in the scorpio. Producing 116 bhp, it made sure that it was the quickest SUV by Indian standards in 2002.

With drawbacks of poor fuel economy aside, Mahindra decided to go ahead with the launch of petrol powered scorpio at a high end segment.
Front suspension was also unique to the scorpio, an independent strut, based on a modified design that underpinned the 2WD version of Bolero, also known to dramatically improve ride and handling, especially for the top heavy scorpio with a massive engine under hood.

Now while the testing was in final phase ahead of its planned launch in July 2002, Mahindra also needed to beef up its marketing, sales and service skills.
So Mahindra commissioned an entirely new world class chain of dealerships with European inspired buying experience, layout, design, architecture and an entirely new sales team exclusive to the scorpio, different from those who stock its other UVs.
To go with the scorpio's macho image, it had an very innovative marketing campaign and very flashy graphical renderings. All backed with a very catchy slogan aimed at "end of a car".

June 2002.
In a world exclusive, Autocar India carried out an undisguised spy shot of a scorpio in an electrifying blue colour an when I saw it for the first time, WOW!
A modern looking SUV, yet recognizable as a Mahindra!

Now its time for me to call up Sri Durga Automobiles, Delhi's first "Scorpio" Mahindra dealer.
And when I called them, I was surprised.
How was the launch? And how did the Indian public react to it?
And why was I surprised at that phone call?

Find out next....
Because Nothing else will do

Attached Thumbnails
A tribute - Mahindra Scorpio-mahindrascorpio.jpg  

Last edited by sidindica : 19th February 2010 at 21:50.
sidindica is offline  
Old 19th February 2010, 23:12   #36
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 103
Thanked: 8 Times

nice to have you back sid. The scorpio story is very enjoyable as i have been following the various avtaars of the vehicle right from its launch. Please continue.
piyush78 is offline  
Old 20th February 2010, 06:25   #37
chaxy's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: hyderabad
Posts: 388
Thanked: 16 Times

Sid, a very interesting thread. I have some different comments or point of view.

I agree, MM did create history in terms of mobilizing the modern age design methodologies in (concept>prototype>launch) to get the scorpio in 2002. MM broke away from truck/tractor mould and at the same time they have set the bench mark for price, performance and refinement in SUV segment.

From 2002 - till date they have extracted every inch from the design's base platform of scorpio which again evolved over the bolero in many ways. After 7-8 years of creating history, The lastest MM Xylo is not any engineering marvel that one can expect. Somewhere the initial momentum was lost.

With a worldclass young engg team that conceptualized and launched the scorpio + just 2 products (that too UVs) on hand to play with + All the knowhow gathered over time, MM should have launched a path breaking design by 2010 which IMO is very disappointing. If not a path breaking design at least their product portolio should have been expanded.

BTW, I have owned a Bolelo for 6 yrs. Just loved the confidence the vehile and the brand inspires in terms of being thrown around. Samething i admire about the scorpio. It feels virtually indestructible which is the sigle biggest USP of the car.

time for MM to reach the next milestone...
chaxy is offline  
Old 20th February 2010, 07:40   #38
Senior - BHPian
mooza's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 1,068
Thanked: 276 Times

Hi chaxy, Mahindra is bringing out a new SUV in 2010. I do not remember the thread, but the title was something like "Mahindra's new SUV in 2010-spy pics", or something on those lines. It's an interesting thread, do check it out.
Cheers, Mooza
mooza is offline  
Old 20th February 2010, 08:43   #39
Senior - BHPian
raj_5004's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Dubai/Mumbai
Posts: 5,106
Thanked: 2,123 Times

a fantastic read buddy. waiting for more as "nothing else will do"!
raj_5004 is offline  
Old 20th February 2010, 11:50   #40
Senior - BHPian
n.devdath's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 4,139
Thanked: 2,325 Times

I am about get possession of the book "Legend of Scorpio" by Mahindra as it has already been purchased for me.
Cant wait to go through it and know many such facts about the irreplaceable legend called Scorpio.
n.devdath is offline  
Old 20th February 2010, 13:04   #41
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: -
Posts: 4,724
Thanked: 4,097 Times

The launch and public reaction

July 2002.

For the first time ever, Autocar India carried out a comprehensive road test of the scorpio and rated it highly.
While drawbacks of pathetic handling, less than stellar interior space, fuel efficiency and mediocre interior finish are there, it gets positive reviews for its performance from both diesel and petrol motors, refinement, ruggedness and durability and above all, fantastic price to size ratio making it easily the best value for money SUV in the Indian market.

Mid July, 2002.

The car is launched in 3 variants:
  • Scorpio 2.6 STD with 2609 cc turbo DI, 109 bhp
  • Scorpio 2.6 DX with added features like Central locking, power windows, cladding etc with the same diesel motor.
  • Scorpio REV 116 with 1998 cc Renault petrol engine, 115 bhp with added features like defogger, roof rails and body colored cladding.
  • Colours included sunrise red, scorpio blue (electric blue), engine silver, dark green and grand black.
While I don't remember he exact price, I think it was launched at a shock price band of 6-8 lakhs. The petrol model was launched 2 months later, in September to sort out minor pre launch niggles.

The public gave a thunderous response.
When I saw a full page ad of scorpio on that day's HT, I saw the name of the first scorpio only dealer, Sri Durga, located at rama road, Delhi.
Called them up, took some details and the lady proudly tells me

"We have already booked 200 cars".
200 cars?
I cannot believe it, and kept on asking again and again for confirmation and she kept on saying, yes, 200 cars.
It goes on a record breaking waiting list of 12-15 weeks.

While mahindra does know that the product per say is not exactly perfect, what it dos right is that from the start of production itself, engineers work hard at upgrades to the existing product, should any complaints creep in.
Not succumbing to produce more to keep with the demand, it takes its own time to sort out any niggling faults to give the best quality product to its customers at the right price with the right service and reliability.
Amongst the early bookers of scorpio include some known bollywood celebrities also.
As expected, when the first cars are seen on the roads, customers put it to all sorts of tests, as they would do to any mahindra.
And of course as expected, niggling faults are detected by owners like below par mileage, noisy engine, suspension problems at rear leading to uneven tyre wear, flimsy interior parts etc.
But nothing major is reported to rattle the company.
Building an entirely new vehicle in an entirely new assembly line is no mean feat, so mahindra keeps production capacity to 1,000-1,200 units per month until streamlining is achieved.
One point to note is that the problems can be rectifiable, as observed by Mahindra's engineers. So while they are hard at working upgrades, the scorpio becomes an almost common sight in various metros, bigger towns and some new satellite towns also.

Also, the dealers do their best to provide the customers with the best of sales an service and the fact is also reflected in the feedback given by owners to the company, so the company can work hard in making the scorpio ownership experience truly world class, if not class best.

An initiative is launched by mahindra called "With You, Hamesha" which includes club memberships, roadside assistance for breakdowns, 24 X 7 information providing toll free number etc to reach out to its potential customers. And the response is overwhelmingly positive and this dramatically improves the image of the company.

One year on, more than 15,000 scorpios are sold, and the product has proven itself to be on the higher side of reliability factor in the Indian market, and commands industry best resale value.
But Mahindra does not want to rest on its laurels.

While the scorpio is awarded the CNBC Autocar Car of the Year 2003, Mahindra decides to make matters worse for other cars, just when other cars thought that the worst was over.

What made matters worse?
Find out next..
Because, Nothing else will do....

Attached Thumbnails
A tribute - Mahindra Scorpio-ad1.jpg  

A tribute - Mahindra Scorpio-ad2.jpg  

A tribute - Mahindra Scorpio-ad4.jpg  

Attached Images

Last edited by sidindica : 20th February 2010 at 13:05.
sidindica is offline  
Old 20th February 2010, 14:49   #42
raj.barcode's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 680
Thanked: 61 Times

Absolutely brilliant write up, one of the best reads i have done on TBHP . My father was one of the first customers of scorpio infact he was the fifth one to book in bangalore.
raj.barcode is offline  
Old 20th February 2010, 15:38   #43
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: -
Posts: 4,724
Thanked: 4,097 Times

First Engineering upgrades

Late 2003 saw more than 20,000 scorpios cruising the length and breadth of the country. Point taken.
Because just when you thought that the worse was over, Mahindra decided to make matters worse for other cars by giving a slew of upgrades to its flagship SUV, the scorpio.
These were:
  • reducing engine noise even further by replacing belt driven camshaft with a chain driven one for low NVH, better reliability and improved mileage
  • increasing airflow by modifying grill design
  • its major Achilles heal-cramped interior space was increased, albeit in minor proportions by fiddling around with seat design.
  • increase in mileage by 15 percent
  • improved interior plastics
  • tweaks to the rear suspension to aid bouncy ride and sloppy handling
  • improvement in seat cushion design.
All these improvements were part of ongoing Kaizen process at Mahindra right from the start, and this made customers even more loyal to the brand. Our neighbour was amongst the first to purchase the new version of scorpio and on driving it, it was a completely different animal.
  • The motor, SZ 2600 plus was much smoother and quoter and it actually had an improved torque curve to reduce frequent gear shifting in cities, which was scorpio's unique selling proposition as the ultimate city SUV.
  • Second, NVH levels were dramatically improved and on warming up, it is almost difficult to tell that you are driving a diesel car, epecially with the AC on and windows closed.
  • The handling, though only marginally improved, was much better, so was the ride, still bouncy at the back but at east tolerable, a limitation that remains of leaf springs.
  • Space marginally increased and under thigh support felt much better in this new scorpio.
Not only this increased demand, but it also posed a major threat to the perennial best seller-the Toyota qualis. Chevrolet also launched the tavera but was still more of an MUV rather than an SUV, and targeted towards Bolero customers.

Production increased, and waits reduced and Mahindra launched 2 new varients-the GLX and SLX.
  • The GLX was nothing but cosmetic add ons to mimic the look of petrol scorpios. It gained a defogger, roof rails, stereo and body coloured cladding. Electric blue was the hottest selling colour in Scorpios.
  • The SLX was something really different from other mundane looking cars out there.
The talking car
  • The SLX marked a new beginning for the scorpio.
  • For the first time, two tone shades, exclusively to this model were offered.
  • Blue/silver, red/gold, black/ silver, green/grey were colors that offered.
  • Two tone beige/exterior colour themed interior was offered, which at times appeared jazzy, or at times garish.
  • A bizarre combination of blue coloured dashboard with grey upholstry was offered in blue coloured scorpio SLX.
  • This car offered an industry first voice assist system which includes all the telltale safety and technical warnings like seat belt reminder, engine oil level indication, service reminder, low fuel level reminder etc in which a women speaks verbally rather than a beep which sounds in other cars.
  • A chick's sound was recorded for all this and she keeps on talking to the driver until he is prepared according to her. Often it was seen as a gimmick more than convenience.
Surely, it was marketed as a separate variant boasting the tag line-
"trouble for other cars surely comes in pairs."

The petrol meanwhile continued to sell in minuscule numbers, thanks to its 7-8 kmpl average and only made to order. Some embassies purchased this vehicle, though.
Meanwhile in 2004, the scorpio also won the TNS voice of customer satisfaction award.

Now while a legend dies into sunset in December 2004, it will be replaced by a dramatically new animal which will give the scorpio its first serious competition and will lead to its first dramatic upgrade.

How will Mahindra respond?
Find out next..
Because nothing else will do...

Attached Thumbnails
A tribute - Mahindra Scorpio-ad6.jpg  

A tribute - Mahindra Scorpio-ad5.jpg  

A tribute - Mahindra Scorpio-ad7.jpg  

A tribute - Mahindra Scorpio-ad9.jpg  

Last edited by sidindica : 20th February 2010 at 15:40.
sidindica is offline  
Old 21st February 2010, 15:37   #44
Senior - BHPian
tanwaramit's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Dilwalon ki Dilli
Posts: 1,896
Thanked: 391 Times

wow amazing, waiting for mHawk introduction. they have worked hard and are still improving better.
tanwaramit is offline  
Old 21st February 2010, 15:43   #45
Senior - BHPian
sbraj's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: B L R / T V M
Posts: 1,071
Thanked: 4 Times

Wonderful writeup sidindica. In fact you have succeeded in thrusting Scorpio as an option for my next upgrade.
sbraj is offline  
Closed Thread

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bringing home the Mahindra Scorpio LX. EDIT : Scorpio finds a new home! benbsb29 Test-Drives & Initial Ownership Reports 168 8th January 2015 11:22
Mahindra Scorpio's Photos - Scorpio Xtreme hotkar Modifications & Accessories 35 3rd March 2012 23:43
Mahindra Mahindra Scorpio - Xtreme limited edition unveiled Finject The Indian Car Scene 1 15th September 2010 20:33
Received a copy of the Mahindra Scorpio Coffee Table Book - direct from Mahindra Corp shankar.balan Shifting gears 15 27th August 2010 18:23

All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 18:05.

Copyright 2000 - 2018, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks