In India right now, SUVs are highly popular, especially with drivers who deliberately seek the adrenaline of taking their cars off-road or on rough terrain. And manufacturers are continuously attempting to introduce a variety of appealing and performance-focused vehicles on the market in order to accommodate this growing demand. One of these is Maruti Suzuki, which has unveiled the much anticipated Jimny in direct opposition to Mahindra’s Thar, which has long dominated the SUV market. When talking about off-road vehicles, everyone thinks of the Mahindra Thar since it has established a reputation for being the most competent yet cost-effective 4X4.
However, it would be challenging for the Thar to maintain its position as the sector leader in the near future given Maruti Suzuki’s impending debut of the Jimny in India. Everything finally comes down to price, and since the Jimny will remind shoppers of the storied Maruti Suzuki Gypsy, strong competition may result. Let’s examine the two cars’ designs, variations, size, specifications, features, and more to see how they compare.
The Jimny 5-door is easily distinguished from competing vehicles by its extended wheelbase, straight pillars, upright muscular bonnet, honeycomb mesh five-slot grille, circular LED headlamps with washer, fog lamps housed in the front bumper, five twin-spoke alloy wheel design, and spare wheel mounted on the tailboard. Alloy 15-inch wheels are now standard on the brand-new Jimny 5-door.
The Thar’s external features include a multi-slat grille, circular headlights, turn indicators positioned on the fenders, dual-tone bumpers, and fog lamps integrated into the bumper. It sports 18-inch five-spoke alloy wheels, spare tyre located on the tailboard, and rectangular-shaped rear lights. But, the SUV’s AX version comes with 16-inch alloy wheels. A soft-top or hard-top roof is an option for potential purchasers.
Zeta and Alpha are the two variations on sale for the Maruti Suzuki Jimny. For prospective consumers, the SUV comes with a black top and is offered in Sizzling Red, Granite Grey, Nexa Blue, Bluish Black, Pearl Arctic White, and Kinetic Yellow.
On the other hand, the 4WD Thar is available in two variations, the AX and LX, with both gasoline and diesel engines. Customers can choose from Red Rage, Galaxy Grey, Napoli Black, and Aqua Marine. Everest White and Blazing Bronze are only available on the RWD model.
The Jimny’s 1.5-liter K15B petrol engine, which is paired to either a four-speed torque converter or a five-speed manual transmission, can provide a maximum output of 103 bhp and a maximum torque of 134 Nm. The Jimny is constructed on a ladder frame chassis. Using a low-range transmission, Maruti’s AllGrip Pro 4×4 technology distributes power to all four wheels.
The new Thar has a choice between a petrol and a diesel engine. The car is powered by a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder petrol engine with a top torque of 300Nm and a maximum power of 150bhp. This SUV’s automatic variant boasts a 20Nm boost in torque. In comparison, the oil burner’s 2.2-liter diesel mHawk engine produces 130 horsepower and 300 Nm of torque. It is coupled with a six-speed torque converter and a six-speed manual transmission. Either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission is offered for both engines.
The Maruti Suzuki Jimny measures 3,985mm in length, 2,590mm in width, 1,645mm in height, and 2,590mm in wheelbase. The boot increases from 208 litres to 332 litres when the back seats are folded down. It comes with a 40-litre gasoline tank as well.
The Mahindra Thar, in comparison, is 135mm higher and 175mm broader while having the same length. The hard top features a 57-litre fuel tank and can be raised to a height of 1,844mm. Although having five doors, Jimny’s total length is precisely the same as the three-door variant of the Thar. The new model is a continuation of the old one, with the same streamlined design. In addition, the Jimny seems to be smaller than the Thar when placed side by side.
In order to function well off-road, the Jimny features 210mm of ground clearance, a 36 degree approach angle, a 50 degree departure angle, and a 24 degree ramp-over angle. The Thar, on the other hand, has a ramp-over angle of 26.2 degrees, a ramp-approach angle of 41.2 degrees, and a departure angle of 36 degrees. The SUV’s maximum wading depth is 650mm.
Inside, the Jimny 5-door has a rectangular black console, a nine-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, circular AC vents, steering-mounted controls, and screw holes for luggage hooks. It still only has four seats, a boxy interior, and an analogue dial.
Interior highlights of the Mahindra Thar include a sturdy dashboard with a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system that supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as a full digital driver infotainment system that includes an analogue speedometer and a tachometer. It also boasts controls positioned on the steering wheel, lumbar support for the driver’s seat, speakers installed on the roof, and an adventure gauge on the TFT screen that displays all the information needed for off-roading.
As far as safety features go, the Maruti Suzuki Jimny offers side, curtain, twin airbags, a limited slip differential, ABS with EBD, hill hold control, hill descent control, a rearview camera, a side-impact door beam, and ISOFIX.
A clever electronic brake locking differential, a washable floor with drain plugs, tow hitch protection, dual airbags, ABS with EBD and braking aid, and ESP with roll-over prevention are all features of the Thar, in contrast., hill hold and hill descent control, a built-in roll cage, a provision for snow chains for the tyres, and speed-sensing front door locks.
The Thar’s starting price for rear-wheel drive models is Rs. 9.99 lakh. Price-wise, four-wheel drive variants are available for between Rs 13.59 lakh and Rs 16.29 lakh. Everything is priced ex-showroom. The cost of the Maruti Suzuki Jimny has not yet been disclosed. But it’s expected to start anywhere between Rs. 10 and 12 lakh. Maruti Suzuki has already begun taking reservations for the SUV at their Nexa stores for a nominal fee of Rs 11,000 each.