How I almost bought a Thar, but ended up with the XUV700 instead

We upgraded from our 2016 Hyundai Creta which had covered over 75,000 km.

BHPian saurabhrai recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

So this is my first non "help me" post here. I bought XUV 700 AX7L D AT on 15th Jan. This is my story of that purchase.


Our first car was a used Maruti 800. Our first new car was a 2004 MS Esteem Vxi. Man was she something to drive. That is the car which taught me how to drive and I will always remember her. We had her till last year and had to sell it for scraps as road legality was gone and we had moved to Kolkata and the car was registered in Delhi.

In 2016, we bought a White Hyundai Creta SX(O) D MT which I took with me once I moved out for work. I bought my parents a Honda City Vx P MT in 2018 in its' place.


Now, coming to July 2021, Creta had done 75,000 odd Kms and there was an itch to upgrade. There were no mechanical faults in it. Only the clutch had been replaced once till now.

So, I took test drives of all the cars coming in my budget and some crossing it too. My criteria were some basic features, a diesel engine and a good AT box. My usage was now about 20-30K Kms per year and mostly Highway.

Tata Nexon: Diesel Manual was available for TD. The car seemed fine but the clutch felt extremely weird. That turned me off immediately. Plus in my head, size-wise, performance-wise, and quality wise it was not really an upgrade to Creta. Rejected

Kia Sonet: Diesel AT. Really liked this car. Space was manageable as my usage was limited to the front two rows mostly. The performance seemed marginally better than my existing drive, features are a given for any Kia/Hyundai. Safety was a concern, but other points were weighing against it solidly. There was a waiting for 4 months back then which seemed doable. Considered

Tata Harrier: Test drove the Diesel AT. Loved driving this tank of a vehicle. The features seemed fine enough. The performance was great. It basically ticked all the boxes. But Safari was a stretch by just 1.5 lac and I could have a 6-seater "in case" I ever need one. (You can see the 27-year-old mind working, right.) Rejected

Tata Safari: It was just a bigger Harrier. The drive was extremely stable and it too ticked all the right boxes. But then a friend of mine, an Innova owner, told me that if I am willing to shell out 25 odd lacs for Safari, why not go for Crysta instead? Z AT was costing 27ish lacs back then and I could maybe wait for six months (I was willing to wait for 4 for Sonet) and sort out my finances. Rejected

Toyota Innova Crysta: Asking for a test drive was a task. Apparently, you don't test-drive a Toyota. Anyway, took a diesel AT for a drive. It didn't have the features, but boy was the premiums there. I immediately felt like I was sitting in a big car. It was surprisingly easy to drive too. Came back with a smile. Considered

I had finalised Crysta for now and went back to normal life, meanwhile sorting out my finances. I had planned to complete 1lac KM on my Creta and then sell it off.

That happened in June '22. I booked Innova Crysta Z D AT which was now commanding a waiting for 2 months. I got my car valued by Cars24 and Cardekho meanwhile. I was getting a decent quote for it too. But for a family issue, I had to cancel my booking and postpone my plan indefinitely. I did TD some other vehicles in the meantime though.

Kia Seltos/Hyundai Creta: Driving a diesel AT felt extremely underpowered compared to my current car. Rejected

Jeep Compass: This was some car. Immediately hit my heart. The performance, unlike the popular opinion, was great. That premium feel. I always say, Compass is the gateway to luxury vehicles. But the cost for the top end was in no way justified or achievable for me. And it has to be top-end for me. Rejected

Mahindra Thar: Loved driving this jeep. It is uncomfortable but fun to drive. I posted numerous times on the Thar thread and people responded by saying "It is not meant to be driven above 100" "--well, I can live with that", "It has a continuous movement" "--well, I can get better aftermarket suspensions", etc. Basically, I was willing to justify all its' shortcomings to my family. "I don't really need a 4 seater". You get my naivety. Considered

In the background, I had booked XUV 700 AX7L D AT AWD (that's long) Midnight Blue (delivery time June '24, later moved down to June '23) and Scorpio N D AT Z8L 6S on the launch day (not the introductory price; delivery time was August '23). I wasn't really planning on buying XUV for the same logic as Safari. Not once did I test drove it.

Now, in November end, My ASS informed me that the gearbox is about to go and it will need some work in 2-3 months. This was scary for me as I feel once the engine or gearbox is opened, the vehicle can only go down from there. Could be wrong though. I inform my parents that it was high time we change the car.

I started calling all my SAs asking which cars are readily available. Around 13th December, my Mahindra guy calls me and tells me one Thar, Diesel AT HT Black is readily available if I want it. No bookings are needed. I went bonkers. I immediately called up my mother and told her I am going forward with it. Research mode went into full mode. Two days later, the day

I was going to pay the booking amount, but my dad calls me up and puts his foot down.

  • Dad: "No, you cannot get a Thar. You are not that privileged. Get something else."
  • Me: "But it ticks all the boxes for me. And I don't really need a 5+ seater."
  • Dad: "I don't care. If I visit you even for a day, I am not sitting in a hired car and definitely not in the backseat of Thar."

I called up my SA and tell him I can't go ahead with Thar. He tells me Scorpio Classic is also an option.

Who hasn't loved Scorpio at least once?

I took a test drive and came back brokenhearted. It's not what I thought you'd be.

Well, what else?

He tells me there's one XUV available, everything as per my requirement except for AWD. Well, now that Crysta was out of the picture, my logic was no longer applicable. Now, the question was to go for this variant now or wait 6 months for AWD. Meanwhile, a different dealership calls me up to tell me my preferred Scorpio N model is also available. Why make things simple when you can complicate the hell out of them?

Scorpio N: the price I am paying doesn't justify this car when compared to XUV. Especially for my usage. If I needed a rugged vehicle for countryside usage primarily, Scorpio N was the car. But my territory was the urban jungle.

XUV700 AWD: Paying 1.5 lac more for a feature "I would love to have as I would love to go off-road" made no sense. I have taken my Creta to very remote places with no troubles.

Wow, so mature of you Saurabh!

Now it was 16th December. We north Indians don't make purchases from 15th December-14th January. So all the payments, PDIs and registration were done in the meantime. Creta was also sold off to Cars24 at this time.


On the day of delivery,15th January, I went to the showroom as per the scheduled time. There was a small celebration ceremony, followed by a mandatory puja.

Mind you, this was the first time I drove this car.

Accessories Taken:

  • Mud Flaps
  • Foot Step
  • Floor mats
  • Pedal cover
  • Rear scuff plate
  • Infotainment screen protector

Initial Impression:

I don't have anything new to add to what has already been said. Niggle wise in my 600 km, only that football in the rear noise is there and the auto start-stop feature has its own mind. The sequential indicators are missing which customer care confirmed that I will receive in a couple of months.

I can write more once we get to know each other a little better.

Sorry if I went on for longer than needed. It's just that I am so glad I made this purchase. Every time I look at my car parked, I can't stop but crushing at her.

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