4th August 2000 marked the launch of one of the most iconic MUVs in India, the Mahindra Bolero. It was meant to replace the Armada Grand. Powering the Bolero was a 2.5-litre diesel engine producing 72.5 BHP.
The Bolero received an update in 2007 with no mechanical changes, however, it got revised bumpers along with revised headlamps and taillamps.
In the meantime, it also got micro-hybrid and CRDe technology. The former was an initiative towards the environment and the latter was meant to make it more fun to drive, something which was lacking in the Bolero earlier.
In 2011, the third generation of the Bolero was launched which is currently on sale. It received a more refined engine along with a fresh look. It also got new features to make the cabin experience better. It’s needless to say that the Mahindra Bolero is an abuse-friendly and durable car. With an aggressive pricing point and a large sitting capacity, it makes it one of the most sought-after cars in rural India for whom an intimidating feature list and creature comforts are not a priority.
Pros – Practical, Indestructible, Road Presence
Cons – Outdated Interiors, Engine Lacks Punch, Lack Of Safety Features
Mahindra Bolero Exterior
Mahindra Bolero isn’t a snazzy-looking MUV that would grab attention but does enjoy a good road presence thanks to its boxy dimensions. It gets somewhat trapezoidal-shaped headlamps, with a big grille between the two headlamps and chrome finishing. The side is blessed with three rectangular-shaped windows and a footrest to get inside. A notable element is the placement of the spare wheel behind the tailgate. The rear gets a big glass window and a wiper.
Mahindra Bolero Interior
The cabin is simple and functional in nature. Since it’s less than four meters in length, the space might seem a bit congested considering it has three rows. Perks of the Bolero include a high seating position and good visibility. Talking about the feel and finish, the Bolero is basic and only gets the bare essential features. At the same time, it lacks useful features like electrically adjustable ORVMs and rear AC vents. In terms of safety, it gets remote locking, ABS, and a driver-side airbag.
Mahindra Bolero Space
There aren’t many storage spaces inside the cabin of the Mahindra Bolero. Three 1-litre bottle holders to be precise. Two in the centre console and one on the passenger door. There aren’t any door pockets in the second row of the Bolero. The same is the case with the third row. Not to forget about the space present inside the glove box which can accommodate some knick-knacks.
Mahindra Bolero Engine Performance
The Bolero gets a 1.5-litre, 3-cylinder, mHawk75 diesel engine producing 75 PS of power at 3600 RPM and 210 Nm of torque between 1600-2200 RPM. It is offered with a 5-speed manual transmission. The engine isn’t the one made for highway driving.
For city driving, the engine offers decent punch however out on the highway, it feels out of breath. Overtaking takes time and patience as one would be needing to plan the overtake in advance with frequent downshifts. The Bolero goes from 0-100 km/hr in 23.52 seconds.
Mahindra Bolero Mileage
The mileage of a vehicle depends upon a lot of factors one of which is the kerb weight of the car. The Bolero is a heavy MUV and is bound to consume more fuel. The fuel tank capacity of the Mahindra Bolero is 60-litres. The ARAI mileage is claimed to be 16.7 km/l. In real-world conditions, one can expect around 13-14 km/l from this oil burner.
Mahindra Bolero Handling
The car isn’t the best when it comes to suspension. It feels bumpy even at lower speeds and vertical movement of the passengers on bad roads is normal. Its not the comfiest suspensions one will find in a Mahindra, however, it’s durable and that’s the market the Bolero targets. The ride and handling is average while high-speed stability needs improvement since it doesn’t instil a lot of confidence past the 100 km/hr mark. There is a lot of body roll on offer. The steering feels heavy even at lower speeds, the gearbox isn’t the sleekest and the turning radius is quite big. The brake feels spongy and need improvement. Overall the Bolero isn’t the most refined and the gear lever seems to vibrate while the car is in motion.
Mahindra Bolero Comfort
The first row is just about decent in terms of comfort. In the second row, a lack of knee room can be felt. However, the second row is a little kind than the third row as it gets two adjustable headrests and a centre armrest. A lack of AC vents, charging ports and bottle holders makes the experience less comfortable.
The third row doesn’t possess much space and it might not be sufficient for two passengers. It doesn’t even get a headrest and the width is not much either. The headrest of the second row would keep pestering the one sitting in the third row. A tall passenger might feel suffocated in the congested space and with not much headroom on offer. The third row is best suited for children or short rides.
Mahindra Bolero Safety
As far as safety is concerned, the Mahindra Bolero isn’t the safest car going around. It is equipped only with ABS, Central Locking, and a Side-Driver Airbag.
Mahindra Bolero Service
With Mahindra targeting the rural market for the Bolero, it is designed in a way that a roadside mechanic would be good enough if the car breaks down. However, Mahindra being an Indian manufacturer, one can find an array of services centres across India apart from remote villages where it still needs to stamp its footprint.
Mahindra Bolero Prices
Following are the prices (on-road Mumbai) of Mahindra Bolero :
- B4 Diesel Manual: Rs. 10.55 lakhs
- B6 Diesel Manual: Rs. 11.45 lakhs
- B6(O) Diesel Manual: Rs. 11.73 lakhs
Mahindra Bolero Resale Value
The Mahindra Bolero does hold its resale value which is usually not expected with a car as outdated as a Bolero. Even after driving it for more than 1-lakh kilometres, one can fetch a good value if the car is properly maintained. The resale value also depends upon the condition in which the car is in.
Mahindra Bolero Colours
The Mahindra Bolero is available in the following colours:
- Mist Silver
- Lakeside Brown
- Diamond White
Mahindra Bolero Specifications
Engine: 1498cc, 3-Cyl, Diesel
Power: 75 BHP @ 3600 RPM
Torque: 210 Nm @ 1600-2200 RPM
Transmission: 5-Speed MT
Fuel Type: Diesel
Tyre Size: 215/75/15 (Front & Rear)
Suspension: Coil Spring (Front), Leaf Spring (Rear)
Brakes: Disc (Front), Drum (Rear)
Safety: Driver Airbag, ABS
Dimensions (LxWxH): 3995 mm X 1745 mm X 1880 mm
Wheelbase: 2680 mm
Fuel Tank Capacity: 60-litres
Mahindra Bolero Variants
The Bolero is offered in the following variants :
Mahindra Bolero Rating
We gave Mahindra Bolero a rating of 3/5.
Mahindra Bolero Upcoming Models
It is rumoured that Mahindra Bolero might get a dual-tone colour scheme in order to keep the popular MUV fresh and help it maintain its strong sales numbers in this competitive segment.
Mahindra Bolero vs Maruti Ertiga
Maruti Ertiga has over time earned a family car reputation. Though both solve different purposes, with the Ertiga being a popular choice in the urban areas, the Mahindra Bolero continues to rule the rural and sub-urban localities with its durability and sturdiness. The Ertiga is only offered with a petrol engine option. The Bolero only gets a diesel engine option. The Bolero is a rear-wheel-drive vehicle whereas the Ertiga is a front-wheel-drive vehicle. If space and comfort are a priority the Ertiga would fair better since it has more cabin space. The Ertiga comes with far more equipment and features making it more comfortable and premium.
Mahindra Bolero vs Toyota Innova
A 4-cylinder engine compared to the 3-cylinder engine offered on the Bolero, producing nearly double the horses at a similar RPM band, torque output of nearly 130 Nm more than the Bolero, the Innova has all that it takes to outshine the Mahindra Bolero. The Innova gets 7-airbags compared to a single driver airbag offered on the Bolero. It is also equipped with EBD, Brake Assist (BA), Electronic Stability Program (ESP), Hill Hold Control (HHC) which is nowhere to be seen in the Bolero. All this happens to be available at more than double the price of a Mahindra Bolero. Thus, if one is looking for comfort, space, elegance, safety and is not tight on budget, the Innova is the way to go.