The KUV100 was launched in January last year, getting off to a strong start with 21,000 bookings received in the first month of its launch. However, while sales peaked at nearly 7,500 units a month, by the end of 2016, the KUV100 was selling a shade over 1,000 copies.
Last year (well, technically a week ago), we got exclusive spy shots of the KUV100 CNG. The company-spec CNG variant stands to help Mahindra target semi-urban India better, so we take a look at the factors involved and see if/how the CNG variant could improve the model’s sales.
The KUV100 is available with both 1.2-litre petrol and diesel engines. Small car buyers generally prefer petrol engines and with the recent anti-diesel sentiment, buyers have concerns over the long-term implications of buying a diesel car. A CNG variant could make up for the appeal the devil’s fuel lost.
Diesel engines generally cost around Rs 1 lakh more than their petrol counterparts. A factory-fit CNG kit should add around Rs 40,000 to the car’s price and buyers also benefit from peace of mind, as the add-on is from the company itself. As a fuel, CNG is widely available even in the more remote parts of India, as well as Tier-I cities like Mumbai or Delhi.
You may have spotted a few KUV100’s around you sporting yellow plates. The reason? Well, for a car that’s only 3,675mm long, the baby Mahindra’s quite spacious and practical on the inside, making it suitable for transporting 5 people with ease, increasing its appeal for fleet operators.
In fact, it is officially available as a 6-seater, which makes it quite a great people mover, though we do not recommend using the middle section of the front seat as it is cramped for adults, while children should always be seated at the rear. Petrol proves to be quite expensive when you’re looking at a lot of mile munching, while diesel leaves many wary – CNG to the rescue then!
Bonus: Ease for Mahindra
Producing the KUV100 CNG, unlike a hybrid or electric vehicle, won’t be complicated. Since the variant will simply use the 1.2-litre, 3-cylinder mFalcon G80 motor (83PS/115Nm) that’s already available, integrating the new model is relatively easy.
What are your thoughts on the KUV100 CNG? Would you consider buying it when introduced?