Mid-spec Mahindra Thar AX Opt Variant Spied For The First Time; Gets A 7-Slat Grille
The Thar’s mid-spec variant is your best bet if you are looking for a decently kitted out off-road oriented version of the SUV
Update (02/10/2020): Mahindra has launched the second-gen Thar with prices beginning from Rs 9.80 lakh (ex-showroom). Read more about it here.
The second-generation Thar will be available in three variants: AX, AX Opt and LX. While the LX variant is geared more towards the urban environment, the AX variants are for those looking to take the Thar off the beaten path. We’ve had the chance to experience the LX variant of the new Thar but haven’t really had a peek at the AX Opt variant, at least until now. Thanks to a few spy shots that have surfaced on the internet, we now have a fair idea of what to expect from the highest trim for the off-road dedicated Thar AX Series.
The first big difference here is the grille. The top-spec LX variant features rectangular slats but on the AX Opt variants, these slats are curved at their corners, giving it the quintessential ‘jeep’ look. Furthermore, the grille seems to have been done up in the same colour as the body, red in this case. According to our sources, the 7-slat grille could be part of Mahindra’s official accessory list. On the LX variant, you get a different grille that is dark grey in colour. The other major difference is the 245/75 R16 steel wheels instead of the LX’s 255/65 R18 alloy wheels.
Spy shots of the interior suggest that the Thar AX Opt will miss out on a music system as well as the steering-mounted controls that are offered in the top-spec LX variant. Also, the base Thar AX can only be had with side-facing jump seats at the rear, while the AX Opt will come with 50:50 split front-facing rear seats.
And if you look at the final image, which is from the side, the biggest giveaway of this being the AX Opt variant is the convertible soft top. Just above the transparent plastic window, you’ll see a gap in the fabric that hides the chain for the removable windows on convertible soft top. This option is not available on the base-spec AX variant.
For the first time, the Thar will not not only be available with a petrol engine, but also an automatic gearbox. The Mahindra Thar AX Option will be available with both the 2.0-litre turbo petrol and 2.2-litre diesel engine options, but only with a 6-speed manual. The base-spec AX can only be had with a diesel manual.
The Thar will be launched in India on October 2 and is a hotly anticipated SUV, as for the first time it will be available in a more urban-friendly avatar. And for that, we expect Mahindra to price it between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 13.5 lakh (ex-showroom India). However, if you want the top-of-the-line off-road oriented Thar, then the AX Opt variant pictured here will be your best bet.