Mahindra TR40 – Click above for hi-res image gallery

Please correct us if we're wrong, but we're pretty sure the last small diesel pickup sold in the U.S. was the 1988 Ford Ranger. Since then, if you wanted a four-banger oil burner in your truck, you either had to put one in yourself or smuggle one in from Canada in a shipping crate full of Molson Beer. That's why we were so excited when we first heard that Mahindra was planning to bring their diesel pickups stateside. We were so young back then. And so naive.

Plagued by a series of setbacks, delays, and something called "the chicken tax," Mahindra has yet to receive EPA Tier 2 Bin 5 federal emissions certification for their TR20 and TR40 pickups. But, man, they must be getting really close. Right?

John Perez, CEO of Global Vehicles USA, Mahindra's exclusive distributor in the U.S., says that all the emissions testing on the trucks has been completed and the paperwork is being submitted to the EPA for final approval. Approval is expected to take about 30 days. At that point, Global Vehicles could begin importing the trucks to the United States. They would arrive on U.S. shores 30 to 60 days later.

By our math, that sounds like we could have Mahindras on U.S. roads before the end of August, but neither Perez nor Mahindra's Corporate offices are talking sale dates yet. Experience has probably taught them not to make predictions. But with 330 dealers signed up and raring to go, we're sure that official sales date can't come soon enough for any of the parties involved.

When they eventually go on sale, Mahindra pickups will be offered in two cab configurations: a two-door regular cab, the TR20, and a four-door crew cab, the TR40. Both will offer Mahindra's slightly modified version of the mHawk 2.2-liter inline-four-cylinder diesel engine. Official EPA numbers obviously haven't been determined, but the trucks are expected to have fuel economy ratings around 30 miles per gallon on the highway. Not too shabby considering their 1.3-ton hauling capability. Pricing is expected to start around $22,000.

Source: Automotive News via

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