Mahindra Bolero ZLX
The Mahindra Bolero has been doing rounds from quiet many years now, it has spread its glory with its ruggedness and it is a typical Jeep that we all know for ages. The Bolero is known for its simplicity; ease of maintenance and also for its load bearing qualities along with its huskiness. The Bolero just received a major facelift technically and also cosmetically. This brute vehicle was handed over to us for a road test to steer it through its paces. Read on to know how mightier and stronger the New Mahindra Bolero is.
Externally, the New Mahindra Bolero still looks traditionally angular as always and that is where its bruteness really lies in. The overall design is flat and straight. The Mahindra Bolero uses a uni-body design which in practical terms is to keep the manufacturing costs low but then it also helps in keeping body shop repairs expense low for the owner later on. With dimensions of length 4107mm, width 1745mm and height 1880mm, the New Bolero appears huge and dominating.
The front end gets all new grille with vertical slits done with a dash of chrome around the Mahindra logo in the center. The head lights are now in line with the body and look very aerodynamic and in-place.
Integrated turn lights get included in these hawk eye headlamps. The front bumper on the New Bolero has an all new design, made of metal which extends its robustness. Integrated round fog lamps come mounted on this muscular bumper. The bonnet is long and the flat design flows here too.
The side profile of the New Mahindra Bolero gets a touch of all new body graphics that flows on the doors. The front fender has a flat fender cap that covers up the extended wheels. The fenders now get a flushed in type turn indicators along with a grey garnish strip that runs across the side profile of the New Mahindra Bolero right till the tail light.
The doors get the external hinge mounts as with the older Bolero but now come with neat looking hinge covers that do a good job in hiding the door hinges. The Mahindra Bolero drives on 215/75 R15 tyre profiles with neatly designed eight spoked wheel caps making them look slick. The side profile of the New Mahindra Bolero has a foot board that runs across the running board of the vehicle. The footboard is made of metal making it stronger.
The ZLX Bolero that we tested came with body colored wing mirrors a dual tone door handles that have a touch of silver finish on them. The rear of the New Mahindra Bolero gets a pair of all new crystal finish tail lamps that are mounted low.
The spare tyre is mounted on the tail gate that’s covered by the Bolero style half cover on it. The rear windshield also gets a wash wiper on the top end ZLX variant. Rear defogger is sorely missed though. The rear step is also a metal affair continuing with the design element of the side footboard.
The license plate is mounted on the lower right side corner which is very untypical but looks nice and different. The overall external fit finish is much better than the previous Bolero and so is the paint quality and finish that’s of higher grade.
Interiors - Cabin.
The New Mahindra Bolero gets an all new fresh design cabin. It is in here that the New Bolero gets big thumbs up on this major refresh. The New Bolero gets much better quality of plastics on the dashboard; a lighter shade used here makes the cabin look bright. The all digital speedo cluster is the highlight of the dash. The speedo meter, tacho meter, fuel gauge and the engine temperature gauge are all in digital format.
The dash board is now curvier and has a lot more smooth edges as compared to the older Bolero. The fake wood finish inserts is added around the AC vents and the center console. The glove box has a bit more space as opposed to the older Bolero while the grab handle above the glove box feels a lot nicer to grip due to the use of higher quality of plastics.
The steering is a three spoke affair with a touch of silver finish put on the top end ZLX version of the New Bolero. Power steering comes as standard on all the variants of the New Bolero which is a very good and much needed inclusion on this SUV. The steering is set at a slightly awkward position for tall drivers and a height adjust on it is sorely missed. You get a single disc Kenwood-Mahindra MP3 – FM unit with an AUX port on the top end ZLX Bolero with 4 speakers included.
The audio quality is good thanks to the roomy cabin which adds to the sound effect. The AC unit with a three speed blower does its job fairly well in cooling the largish cabin. You also have a multi information display that’s mounted in the center of the dashboard.
This display unit reads out the day, date, time along with the current fuel efficiency and the distance to empty (DTE) readings.
The gear indicator is also flashed on this display. You also have the Start- Stop Micro Hybrid feature on the top of the line ZLX variant. Now what this feature does is-it automatically switches off the engine if the sensors notice that the vehicle is at a standstill for more than a minute and then when the driver taps the accelerator, the sensors wake up the engine to fire back.
This system saves fuel and increases fuel efficiency to an extent. The New Bolero gets a light beige color fabric seats, the front seats get height adjust head rest. Height adjust on the driver’s seat would have been an added advantage.
The front seats are not very broad but decently comfortable. You get beige door pads with bottle holders on them. The rear seats get two height adjust head rests along with a center folding arm rest. The rear seats can fit in 3 passengers very easily. Head room and shoulder room is more than average while the leg room at the rear is just average. The rear seats are comfortable and the incline is set for max comfort.
Apart from the two row seats you also get a third row of sets that is side facing, two passengers can sit in here and this seats can also be folded flat to increase the boot area. You get power windows for all the 4 windows and also a neat human voice warning system that alerts you to wear seat belts, alerts if your door is open and also if your hand brake is on while driving among other warnings.
Engine – Suspension – Drive
The New Mahindra Bolero now has a CRDI engine. The New Bolero is now powered by the m2DiCR engine. Now this is the same engine unit that also powers the Mahindra Scorpio EX but in a different state of tune.
This engine is 2523cc in capacity and produces a healthy 62bhp of power @ 3200RPM and generates 190Nm of torque @ as low as 1400 RPM. This engine is mated to a 5 speed manual gear box. This engine transplant to the New Bolero is the biggest highlight on the facelift.
This is a very hard working and refined unit that does wonders to the Bolero’s identity which till now was known more of rural or semi urban vehicle but now things have changed. Start the engine and you know what we are talking about. This super refined engine has a nice engine note to it and a smooth idle. The drive on the New Mahindra Bolero is totally different, it has become very up market as compared to the earlier engine Bolero and all thanks to the m2DiCR engine.
The New Bolero gets an all independent coil spring suspension in the front and the good old elliptical leaf-spring at the rear. The suspension setup on the New Bolero feels reworked and tuned much better as compared to the older Bolero.
The drive feels better and the vehicle remains planted at all speeds. The cornering abilities have also got much better now. The Bolero did speeds of 125kmph on our test run on the highway and returned with an overall fuel efficiency of 14.5kmpl which is quiet good for the vehicle and that too with the AC switched on all the time.
The New Bolero has a smooth shift gearbox unlike the old Boleros gear shifts that were a pain to engage in. Ah and needless to say the Bolero has a ground clearance of 185mm which helps it sail over bad roads and big shapeless speed breakers.
The New Mahindra Bolero in the new avatar has got fresh blood pumped in with the new engine and a host of other features.
The USP of the Bolero, that’s simplicity, still remains intact and that’s the biggest plus point. The Bolero can carry a lot of load without complaining at all and this stands true even for the New Bolero. The Bolero has got a fresh new lease of life and prices for the Bolero (ex-showroom, Mumbai) starting at Rs 6.12 lakh for the base SLE variant, going up to Rs 6.62 lakh for the SLX version and finally, Rs 6.77 lakh for the ZLX variant that we drove, makes it quiet a stealer.