India’s taxation regulatory can be quite difficult to understand. You see, one day, one of the regulatory powers of our country deliberately decided that any car under 4-metres in length would be taxed significantly lower than a car that’s over 4-metres in length. This, in fact, created many different segments with the prefix, ‘compact’ in the market.

A few years back, Mahindra also decided to jump on the bandwagon and made its highly popular Bolero under 4-metres by chopping off the bumpers. Another significant change Mahindra made to the Bolero was in terms of the powertrain, for the utility vehicle now came with a 1.5-litre diesel engine, replacing the older 2.6-litre unit from its predecessor.

But the most recent update to the Bolero was a few months ago, for the manufacturer updated the 1.5-litre mill to adhere to the latest BS-VI emission standards. However, it was only certified for the moment and the BS-VI compliant Bolero was slated to be launched in early-2020. So, before the updated Mahindra hits the showrooms in the upcoming weeks, here’s how the BS-IV spec Bolero fares in the Indian market. Read on.


The Bolero hasn’t witnessed any aesthetic updates for roughly 18 years now. Mahindra is expected to spruce things up by making some modifications. The Bolero on sale right now, as far as specifications are concerned, measures 3,995mm in length, 1,745mm in width, and 1,880mm in height. The ground clearance is a decent 180mm. Moreover, it has a rear-wheel-drive layout, and the turning radius is 5.8-metres.

Since it’s the BS-spec model on sale, we’ll emphasise on that engine for now. Therefore, it’s the same 1.5-litre three-cylinder unit which is good for 70bhp and 195Nm of torque. The power is sent to the rear wheels via a 5-speed manual gearbox.

The engine is quite refined for a three-cylinder unit with well-contained vibrations. There’s virtually zero turbo lag and the car pick up the pace quite effortlessly. As is a norm with diesel engines, the mid-range is where all the meat lies and it runs out of steam when revved to the top-end. The clutch is a huge improvement over the older car, however, there is still too much travel. The gears require a long throw too, making the Bolero quite a task to drive in the city.


While it might be down on capacity, the 1.5-litre is miles ahead of the older 2.6-litre unit when it comes to fuel efficiency. As per ARAI, the 1.5-litre engine mated to a 5-speed gearbox is capable of delivering 16.5km/l in its BS-IV spec.


Since the Bolero is a utility vehicle with a terrific price, don’t expect it to be laden with a lengthy equipment list. The driver sits facing a digital instrument cluster, which appears to be dated and not much informative. There is also a smaller screen for other info placed in the middle. The infotainment system is a single-DIN unit, with Bluetooth, USB, and AUX-in connectivity. Below that is the manual air-con unit. There are no steering-mounted controls or ORVM adjusters to speak of.

The space inside is also good, although the seats could have been better cushioned. The third-row is strictly for children since there is not enough space there.


The Bolero, as of early-2020, comes in six shades, namely, Diamond White, Rocky Beige, Mist Silver, Java Brown, Fiery Black, and Toreador Red.


All the details regarding the Mahindra Bolero, namely, the engine, specifications, variant wise equipment, colours, dimensions, interiors, and exterior details are extensively covered in the brochure.

Variants and Prices

As of early-2020, the Mahindra Bolero is available in eleven variants, with four variants for the 1.5-litre diesel-manual and seven variants for the 2.6-litre diesel-manual (expected to be axed out soon). The prices start at Rs. 7.49 lakhs for the Power Plus LX variant going all the way up to Rs. 9.35 lakhs for the ZLX BS-IV variant (both prices ex-showroom, Delhi). For the variant-wise on-road prices, visit us at autoX.

For more on the Mahindra Bolero, be sure to tune in to autoX.

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