Mahindra, a leading Indian automaker, has joined this illustrious journey by driving three of its home-grown SUVs - the XUV300, XUV700, and Scorpio-N - on the deck of the INS Vikrant, making them the first vehicles to be onboard an aircraft carrier in India.
The Indian Navy has achieved a remarkable feat of engineering excellence with the INS Vikrant, the country's first indigenous aircraft carrier.
Measuring 262.5mm long and 62.5mm wide and standing almost 18 storeys tall, the INS Vikrant is an enormous vessel with a flight deck almost the size of two football fields. The Mahindra SUVs were driven on this expansive deck. The INS Vikrant is the first of several new aircraft carriers planned by the Ministry of Defence for the Indian Navy, and this collaboration with Mahindra marks the first time an automobile brand has taken its vehicles on board the deck of an aircraft carrier.
The INS Vikrant is a symbol of India's engineering prowess, and the three Mahindra SUVs represent the "Make in India" initiative. All three SUVs were developed in India and have set safety and driving standards in their respective segments.
The Mahindra XUV300 is a sub-compact SUV that comes with two powertrain options: a 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbocharged 110 PS petrol and a 1.5-litre four-cylinder 115 PS diesel engine. The Mahindra XUV700 and Scorpio-N are midsize SUVs with distinct characteristics. The Scorpio-N is a ladder-on-frame SUV with a rugged appeal, while the XUV700 offers a more sophisticated package with its monocoque frame. Both SUVs are available with 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol and 2.2-litre diesel engine options, priced almost similarly.
All engine options come with a standard six-speed manual transmission. The higher-spec diesel and turbo-petrol engines can also be paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. The Scorpio is rear-wheel drive by default, and the higher-spec diesel models come with all-wheel drive, including mechanical rear-locking differentials, an ESP-based brake-locking front differential, an independent front suspension, and a five-link rear suspension.
Mahindra recently launched the Scorpio-N with prices announced for petrol-manual and diesel-manual rear-wheel-drive versions. The petrol-manual combination is available in Z2, Z4, Z8, and Z8 L variants, while the diesel-manual combination is available in all of these variants, with the additional Z6 variant slotted between Z4 and Z8. Both combinations offer the Z8 L variant in either six-seater or seven-seater configurations.