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Car Review: New Mahindra Pik-Up Double Cab

Comfortable and capable…

Last week, Mahindra launched the updated version of its next generation Pik-Up in Gauteng. Women on Wheels was there to experience what Mahindra promises will make competitors sit up and pay heed.

In South Africa, bakkie fans have various reasons for their product preferences, whether it be for work, play, or simply the pure joy of owning a bakkie (or simply their love of the model). Apart from its affordability in South Africa’s tough current economic climate, bakkie owners most likely value its combination of comfort and capability.

It appears that Mahindra has tapped into this. The new Mahindra Pik-Up hosts a variety of features to satisfy these desires, with a price-tag that should appeal to a broader range of consumers. It now comes with a six-speed manual transmission, increased turbodiesel power with 103 kw, a much more attractive interior than its predecessor and a towing capacity of 2 500 kg.

Robust and rugged, a real outdoorsy adventurer

On the outside, it might look somewhat outdated when compared to some of the other new bakkie brands launched this year, but I like that it’s got that hint of old-school originality quirk to it. As much as I love the look of the latest bakkies out there, the new Mahindra Pik-Up gives the impression of a real off-road, outdoorsy adventurer, perfectly suited to South Africa’s diverse and often harsh road terrains.

The upgrade does, however, give the new Pik-Up a slightly more aggressive and modern look, with emphasis on the front-end styling. The most significant changes to the exterior include a new grille, headlights, bonnet and foglamps.  Headlights on either side of the grille are also completely new with a new curved LED daytime running light signature, or “eyebrow” as Mahindra names it, for the top-of-the-range S10 derivative.

Convenience and comfort 

I had quite a lot of time inside Mahindra’s new Pik-Up while driving from Lanseria International Airport to Magaliesberg. While we usually pair up or have at least one driving ‘buddy’ on launches, I was assigned to my vehicle without a driving partner. At first I was somewhat apprehensive about having to navigate myself in a car I’d never driven before, but it didn’t take long for me to feel comfortable and confident. In fact, I rather enjoyed having the cabin to myself as I could take in all that it has to offer, without any distractions. I was also grateful for the S10’s built-in Navigation system that directed me through every town and highway road, very precisely and timely.

Seating positioning in the new Pik-Up is raised and you sit pretty high up, while visibility through the windows is unobstructed. Seating is further made comfortable thanks to improved upholstery and the flagship S10 derivative adds driver convenience with a multi-functional steering wheel, as well as remote central locking and cruise control.

Driving impressions

Mahindra’s new Pik-Up’s six-speed manual gearbox driving rear wheels is what I enjoyed the most during my test-drive. Gear-changing is efficient and smooth, while its in-gear acceleration and pulling power is sufficient. It has an updated 2,2-litre four-cylinder mHawk turbodiesel engine with an impressive torque of 320 N.m which is reached at 1 600 r/min.

The entire range of the new Pik-Up is fitted with an electronic Locking Differential as standard, so there’s no need to sit and fiddle with buttons or to wait for activation lights during your off-roading excursions. We had a quick go at some off-roading with the new Pik-Up once we reached Magaliesberg and although the terrain going uphill was extremely uneven and rocky, I remained pretty comfortable and solid behind the wheel.

Safety conscious

Mahindra’s done a good job at providing enough safety features as standard on some models, to give someone like myself, a somewhat neurotic and safety-consciously minded driver, peace of mind. These include ABS, EBD, Dual airbags, Crash protection crumple zones and a Collapsible steering column.

They’ve also added three head rests for backseat passengers, three-point seatbelts, as well as two ISOFIX anchor-points at the back of the Double Cab S10 models.

The new Mahindra Pik-Up might not be as refined as bakkies like the Ford Ranger or the Volkswagen Amarok, for example, but it’s certainly a great alternative to the bigger players and for customers looking for a more affordable bakkie capable of heavy loads and off-roading adventures.

Pricing 

The Single Cab Pik Up’s are available in two different specification levels.

The S4 Single Cab 4×2 is available from R187 999 (with an optional service plan).

The S6 Single Cab 4×2 is available from R239 995 and S6 4×4 from R284 995

The Mahindra Pik Up Double Cab S10 4×2 will be starting from R324 995 and for the S10 4×4 from R354 995

The pricing includes a 4 Year /120 000 km Warranty and roadside assistance, and a 5 Year / 90 000 km Service Plan. Services are at 20 000 km intervals or every 12 months, whichever comes first.

Source: Mahindra South Africa

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