It's been 10 years since Mahindra & Mahindra reworked its Armada SUV into a more civil machine. The company renamed its off-road machine the Bolero at that time, and since then, the beast has found favor with the police, military and regular citizens who need a little off-road prowess in their daily commute. To celebrate the nameplate's 10-year anniversary, Mahindra has rolled out a new 2011 version of the truck, complete with one very interesting exterior design. From the looks of things, the truck has all of the necessary goodies for tackling the trails of India, including a wicked light bar, a Mahindra logo-shaped snorkel, tow loops and yes, even a pick-axe.
According to Mahindra, the Bolero is the best-selling SUV in India. The truck sold 70,554 units last year, becoming the first SUV to break the 70,000 barrier in India in the process. It's easy to see why. We love this thing almost in spite of ourselves. It looks like a mad scientist somewhere cooked up the DNA of a Hummer H2, Jeep Wrangler and a Land Rover Defender only to come out with this Tonka truck. Hit the jump for one very entertaining press release.
Mahindra & Mahindra proudly calls the company as the 'microcosm of India', a miniature model of India. Yes, the name is perfect for them because it as old as the Indian heritage and have experienced the same aspirations on their tough, bumpy and challenging journey towards their destined goal.
Since its inception in 1945, M&M has been serving the automotive needs of its Indian customers. The franchise was set up to assemble jeeps from Willys, USA.
In the year 1997, Mahindra and Mahindra Limited undertook initiatives to re-align their product and brand portfolios to introduce new market offers. These changes were prompted by changes in the automotive industry in India and the consequent competitive environment.
One of the major initiatives was redesigning their existing brand Armada by changing not only the aesthetics, but also physical features and comforts. The new model was renamed 'Mahindra Bolero'. The brand promise was 'luxurious toughness', and the emotional benefit was "Break Free". It was officially launched in August 2000 and now after a decade of ruling Indian SUV market, it has completed its 10th anniversary of launch.
The strategy was to provide a fully loaded vehicle, high on image dimensions at an attractive price. A significant portion of M & M's vehicles were sold in semi urban and rural areas as they were designed for the rough terrains of the interior parts of India. The Army, the Police and other paramilitary forces that needed vehicles that could handle difficult terrains were also major users of M & M's vehicles. Bolero helped the company to drive into the cities in India. This brand helped the company improve their distribution presence in the urban markets as the volumes generated justified increased investment by the retail distributors in the urban areas. From a small volume of 250 vehicles per month of Armada, the sales of Bolero increased to 800 - 900 vehicles a month.
Bolero was available with a variety of versions in India, delivering best driving performance and excellent fuel efficiency on both on-road and off-road conditions. With its chic looks and cozy interiors the big monstrous car has attracted almost every Indian. M&M became leaders in the segment with an entire array of SUVs just right for the Indian crowd and the humpy bumpy roads in India. The Mahindra Bolero, with its stylish boxy frame has proven the success of an Indian car maker in the SUV segment. When this particular car made its entry it was a hit in no time and created a wave of gusto among the Indian professionals. The car has formed its own class.
Mahindra Bolero comes with the signature features of 'tough and rugged' SUV. This utility car has a 2498cc diesel engine, with dimensions of 4260(L) X 1815(W) X 1810(H) mm and weights 1615kg. It has a ground clearance and a wheelbase of 200mm and 2680mm respectively, a turning radius of 5.4 meters. In 2001 it was more of the 'tough and rugged' SUV. Evolving over the years it combines the ruggedness with state-of –the-art luxury too.
In 2007, Bolero had transformed into an SUV with bold new style, greater comfort and conveniences. In September 2008, the most powerful Bolero was rolled out of the Mahindra stable - the Bolero VLX powered by CRDe technology. By October 2008, owing to Mahindra's environment friendly & sustainable mobility solutions initiative, the Bolero SLX with Micro-Hybrid technology was launched which ensures better fuel efficiency by reducing wastage.
The newly reformed Mahindra Bolero with five doors takes on a dazzling look. The beneficial feature for the one who drives is the ergonomic seat; other additions to the comfort are the arm rests for the middle seats. The cabin seems to be fine and overall the car is quite spacious. Analyzing the space aspect, the interior design is so made that it allots space for folders, files, magazines, music CDs and many other things. So, no file hunts anymore!
For the fourth year in a row, Mahindra Bolero has emerged as the top selling SUV model in the country. Mahindra sold 70,554 units of Bolero in the financial year 2009-10. Mahindra Bolero has also become the first vehicle to cross 70,000 units sales mark in the MPV-UV-SUV segment in the country.
All variants wear a sporty look with chic decals and prominent bumpers. Besides sharp exterior styling and ample interior amenities, the Bolero offers the added advantage of a mechanic or a service centre in most parts of the country.
Mahindra recently organised the Mahindra Bolero Mileage Marathonat Kochi. A total of 32 Bolero families participated in the event which was a special customer-centric initiative. The Mileage Marathon, covering a distance of approximately 58 kms, was a close contest with the first runner-up, Mr. James C K, clocking an average of 31.35kmpl, while the second runner-up, Mr. Jamseer T S, clocked an average of 28.79 kmpl.
Currently the Bolero is ready to "Take on anything". It conveys yuppy, yet tough and rugged DNA of the SUV and is successfully potrayed in the rallies it participates and the Mahindra Great Escape tours where it challenges all the terrains to emerge successful.
Incidentally, the protagonist of the movie Dabangg 'Chulbul Pandey' played by Salman Khan drives the Mahindra Bolero. The rendering of the character was so strong, rugged and robust that it required a brand that could associate with the protagonist and bring out his 'macho', 'fearless', 'outgoing' , 'death-defying' and an attitude of 'take on anything'.