M&M has a knack of knowing when to bring the replacement models in the market is such a manner that maximum is obtained from the outgoing model and minimum cannibalization happens within the existing portfolio.
Toyota Kirloskar Motor just gave the Innova a comprehensive revamp and immediately it caught the market’s fancy. The most successful challenger to the Innova – the Xylo was in dire need of change and so it gets one. But what has changed?
Although the entire model lineup has been changed, but the most number of changes are done to a new top variant – E9.
So let’s run you through the list of changes:
The new Xylo E9 gets a completely re-worked front fascia. The changes are subtle yet distinctive. The most important change is the flat grill that the earlier roundish one. The Mahindra logo is now placed at the lip of the bonnet rather than on the grill as was in the case of earlier models.
The headlamps and the fog lamps have been redesigned to give the Xylo its new distinctive look. The air dams are now slightly wider and the protectors on the front bumper may reduce the aesthetic value but certainly provide freedom from scratches.
On the side, the Xylo keeps its old character lines but gets new rubrails and sandy finish body decals. The alloy wheel design has not been changed but the roof rails are now body hugging then the earlier taller ones.
Not much has changed at the rear. The distinctive changes include a new rear spoiler with integrated brake lights and crystal-clear treatment on the new tail lamps. This wraps up the exterior changes or the new Xylo.
Step into the car and you notice that the interiors are much pleasing than the older one. That’s because the dashboard now features a slightly darker version of brown. The color gels very well with the wood finish and beige interiors.
The steering wheel gets cruise control and voice activated control buttons. The Voice Command Technology (VCT) allows you to order instructions to the car. Unlike the voice command system in the new Ford Fiesta, the technology in Xylo allows to control mechanical actions such locking the door, starting/stopping the wipers, opening the fuel lid etc. Also, unlike the Fiesta, the VCT was developed for Indian accents so it’s more obedient. If you are an XUV500 owner and really feel cheated because you don’t get this technology, wait for 6 months and you'll find it there.
The superbly comfortable seats now get genuine Italian leather which feels plush. The snack trays, rear laptop charging points and individual AC vents and reading lamps for each passenger are some of the other features which catch your eye.
The Xylo E9, being targeted towards affluent families, is loaded with safety features such as: Dual SRS airbags, ABS with EBD, reverse park assist etc.
On the business end, the Xylo E9 gets Scorpio’s engine with 120bhp mated to an all new 5-speed MT 320 transmission. The company claims a fuel efficiency figure of 14.02 kmpl. Mahindra has also fiddled with the rear suspension set up to provide extra stability. On a short drive, we noticed reduced body roll, really good grunt from the engine but at the same time there was a lot of sound creeping into the cabin and the gearbox is certainly not up to the mark.
Just like the Scorpio, the Xylo is finally beginning to evolve as a product. Early Scorpio owners will agree with me when I say that there is a vast difference between the Scorpio then and the Scorpio now. Same is with this new Xylo. Mahindra has done some really interesting changes in this evolutionary phase of the Xylo. Although it is far from its rival Toyota Innova in terms of refinement, it is definitely a step in the right direction.