See this SUV? Looks like a Jeep, right? Well it isn’t. But it sort of is.
What you’re looking at is actually the Roxor, a (sorta) new off-roader that Mahindra will manufacture in the US for the US market.
Never heard of Mahindra? It’s one of the largest automakers in India, and the biggest manufacturer of tractors in the world. It started out building Willys Jeep CJ3s back in the 1950s under license from its American manufacturer, and never really stopped making them. It just kept improving them.
Today its modern Jeep is called the Thar, and that’s what serves as the basis for the Roxor you see here. Only now it’s been redeveloped for the US market where its progenitor got its start.
Oh, and one other thing: it’s not for use on the road. It’s designated in the same class as side-by-side utility vehicles like those made by Polaris or BRP Can-Am – or Mahindra’s own Retriever. That means that you might get away with driving it on public streets in some states, but certainly not on interstate highways. (It can only go 45 miles per hour, after all.)
The vehicle weighs about 3,000 pounds and stretches all of 148 inches long – much smaller, in short, than a modern Jeep Wrangler, even in two-door guise. Power comes from a 2.5-liter four-cylinder turbo diesel, rated at just 62 horsepower and 144 lb-ft of torque. It’s mate to a five-speed manual with four-wheel drive and a two-speed transfer gearcase.
It has disc brakes at the front, drums at the back, and rides on a box steel frame with leaf springs and 16-inch wheels with knobby BF Goodrich KO2 radial tires. It boasts nine inches of ground clearance, and will tow up to 3,490 pounds.
Mahindra hopes the Roxor will forge a new category within the UTV class in the United States. To that end, it’s manufacturing the vehicle at its new plant in Auburn Hills – the same Michigan town where Jeep’s parent company Fiat Chrysler is based.
Interested? Pricing starts at $15,499. That’s about half of what you’d have to pay for a new Jeep Wrangler, but then you can actually drive a Wrangler on the highway and whatnot.