Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar: A Clash of Legends

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

In this thrilling off-road showdown, a homegrown legend goes head-to-head with an international icon. Which one emerges triumphant between the Mahindra Thar and the Maruti Suzuki Jimny? Dive into our review to discover the verdict.

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

The automotive arena is abuzz with anticipation as a fresh contender enters the scene, offering an alternative approach to enjoyment while taking on a well-established favorite. This rivalry pits a distinguished domestic marvel, whose prowess is beyond question, against a global sensation that has made its way to India with a twist. The contest between the Maruti Suzuki Jimny and the Mahindra Thar has been eagerly awaited and is now finally here.

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

The Thar, a revered Mahindra model, garnered renewed success with its 2020 iteration, finding particular favor with the new generation. Despite its three-door configuration and modest boot space, the Thar’s performance remained unaffected, making a bold statement. In contrast, the prospect of the Jimny’s arrival in India had been circulating for years, and when the moment arrived, the SUV brought with it two additional doors. Notwithstanding this conspicuous distinction, the shared trait between these two SUVs is their commitment to navigating uncharted terrains, a trait we scrutinized to determine the superior performer.

Although this was not intended to mirror a Rain Forest Challenge-like off-roading ordeal, we did challenge these vehicles to their limits. Our objective was to partake in outdoor excitement and adventure, much like the typical owners of both the Thar and Jimny. Despite both being sub-4-meter SUVs, their dimensions diverge widely within the constraints of their segment. In terms of design, common elements such as the vertical grille slats, classic round headlamps, and rear-mounted spare wheel contribute to a shared aesthetic.

Driving Dynamics

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

At the off-road adventure zone in Gurugram, we encountered an array of captivating challenges. I initiated the experience with the Jimny, granting the newcomer a first-mover advantage. With the vehicle set to 4-wheel low for added security, I set off. Our journey commenced with an articulation track featuring water elements. The recent benevolence of the rain gods in this region added to the excitement. The ladder frame chassis and rigid axle suspension proved their mettle, providing ample traction to navigate tricky terrain. The presence of steering dampers contributed to a more comfortable ride.

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

The Thar, constructed on a ladder frame chassis as well, glided through the articulation track with ease. The inclinometer, showcasing pitch and roll angles on the 7-inch touchscreen, engaged the driver and added an extra touch of sophistication to the SUV. The Thar benefits from a more potent engine with enhanced torque, and the turbocharged powertrain sets it apart from the Jimny. However, the Thar carries additional weight, slightly impacting the power-to-weight ratio, which remains a negligible differentiator between the two.

MAHINDRA THAR (PETROL 4WD)1,997 cc150 bhp320 Nm6 MT/ 6 AT
MARUTI SUZUKI JIMNY 1,462 cc103 bhp134 Nm5 MT/ 4 AT

Both vehicles in our possession were equipped with petrol automatic transmissions. While the Jimny featured a 4-speed torque converter, the Thar boasted a 6-speed gearbox. The Thar’s 18-inch all-terrain tires were more substantial, but the Jimny’s 15-inch road-biased tires ensured minimal accumulation of mud, paradoxically resulting in better traction. Adjusting the tire profile could further enhance the Jimny’s capabilities.

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

Revisiting the Jimny, I confronted a steep incline on loose surfaces. Momentum was pivotal here, and Jimny’s ground clearance, approach, and departure angles were put to the test. The Thar’s 226 mm ground clearance slightly outmatches the Jimny’s, which proves crucial in specific scenarios. Yet, Jimny’s compact size was an asset, making maneuvering convenient. This advantage becomes apparent only when confronted with these challenges.

MAHINDRA THAR (PETROL 4WD)226 mm42 degrees47 degrees27 degrees
MARUTI SUZUKI JIMNY 210 mm36 degrees47 degrees24 degrees
Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

Confronting a more formidable obstacle, I commenced with the Thar. A steep ascent followed by a lengthy, sharp descent, then mud and another steep incline awaited. Hill descent control proved invaluable for smooth descents. Momentum again played a pivotal role, ensuring successful obstacle traversal. Despite facing this challenge after the Thar, the Jimny performed splendidly, effortlessly conquering the task.

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

Both vehicles boasted an identical turning radius of 5.7 meters, navigating circular paths with ease. Subsequently, it was time for the SUVs to tackle deep waters. The Thar enjoyed a clear advantage here, thanks to its 650 mm water wading capacity, more than double the Jimny’s 300 mm. While lockable differentials were absent, the Jimny’s brake-limited slip differential and the Thar’s hub locks ensured commendable traction.

Technology & Interior

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

A swift inspection of the cabins unveiled the Jimny as the more pragmatic choice. Boasting five doors and ample cargo space, it also featured six airbags, a start-stop button, automatic climate control, and a superior touchscreen interface. When considering on-road behavior and particularly ride quality, the Jimny again garnered a slight edge. However, the Thar’s 16-inch wheel variants promised improved behavior.

Prices (Ex-Showroom)

Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

Comparing ex-showroom prices, the Thar comes at a premium, positioning the Jimny as the more value-driven option. Nonetheless, if aesthetics take precedence over 4×4 capability, the rear-wheel-drive Thar serves as an alternative unavailable in the Suzuki lineup.

MAHINDRA THAR (PETROL 4WD)Rs. 13.87 – Rs. 14.56 lakhRs. 16.10 lakh
MARUTI SUZUKI JIMNY Rs. 12.74 – Rs. 13.85 lakhRs. 13.95 – Rs. 15.05 lakh 
Maruti Suzuki Jimny vs Mahindra Thar

The day spent outdoors with the Jimny and the Thar was an exhilarating experience, showcasing that both vehicles excel in their own distinct ways. The Jimny emanates a composed demeanor, while the Thar exudes a more aggressive character, adept at conquering extreme off-road challenges, requiring a skillful driver. The Jimny, in contrast, offers greater forgiveness and a more comprehensive package across all aspects, extending beyond off-roading. As a global Suzuki icon, it manages to provide more for less, making a significant impact.

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