Indian manufacturer Mahindra has revealed a redesigned off-roader for the USA, following legal action from Jeep due to designs that looked too similar to classic Jeep models.
The Roxor is a compact side-by-side, or off-road vehicle that’s not road-legal, which has now been redesigned in the US market to better differentiate it from Jeep products.
CarExpert has contacted Mahindra Australia to see if there’s a chance the Thar off-roader, which was on track to come Down Under before Stellantis (formerly Fiat Chrysler) scuppered those plans with legal action, will make it here after a similar redesign.
Earlier in 2021, Mahindra agreed not to “import, market, or sell in Australia” the Thar. It also promised to give Jeep written notice 90 days before introducing the Thar or a future variant to Australia.
Although the Thar isn’t here, Mahindra sells the Pik-Up ute and XUV500 ute in Australia. The updated XUV700 is locked in for the second half of 2022.
As for the Roxor? It was first revealed in grainy images in 2020, before being published on the Mahindra USA website this week.
Two models are offered in the USA, both powered by a 2.5-litre turbodiesel engine packing 47kW and 195Nm. It’ll tow 1590kg, and measures 3759mm long and 1905mm wide.
That makes it 280mm longer and 260mm wider than a Suzuki Jimny, although the Jimny has more power (but less torque) than the Roxor.
The boxed steel frame and leaf spring suspension aren’t the last word in sophistication, nor is the open cabin – although Mahindra will sell you an all-weather version with a boxy cabin.
It’s not cheap. In the USA, the base Roxor is priced at US$18,899 ($25,700) and extends to the equivalent of $35,800 in Australian money.
That makes it more expensive than a Jimny, although it’s comfortably cheaper than a new Jeep Wrangler in Australia.